StaTuesday: Freddy Peralta’s magnificent Brewers debut
The undersized right-hander is just 21 years old, playing in his first Triple-A season and was with Single-A Carolina a year ago.
Peralta had earned some acclaim since joining the Brewers as part of the Adam Lind trade in 2015 — he was the organization’s Pitcher of the Month last August — and entered his first major-league start as Milwaukee’s ninth-ranked prospect per MLB Pipeline.
He got the call Saturday, just before he was set to start for Triple-A Colorado Springs, when Brewers starter Chase Anderson went down with an illness.
But with his family in the stands, Peralta turned in a debut for the ages, racking up 13 strikeouts in 5 2/3 innings. Manager Craig Counsell laughed when asked if the Brewers will give the rookie another look.
“I think we’ll be able to find … room for one, yeah,” Counsell said. “He was just magnificent.”
Peralta is just the fifth player all-time to rack up at least 13 strikeouts in his major-league debut, and came up just two Ks short of leaders J.R. Richard and Karl Spooner. He’s just the second Brewers pitcher to have more than 10 Ks in Game 1, breaking a record set by Steve Woodard, who had 12 against Toronto on July 28, 1997.
|J.R. Richard||9/5/1971||HOU||SFG||CG, W||9||7||3||3||15|
|Karl Spooner||9/22/1954||BRO||NYG||SHO, W||9||3||0||3||15|
|Stephen Strasburg||6/8/2010||WSN||PIT||GS-7, W||7||4||2||0||14|
|Freddy Peralta||5/13/2018||MIL||COL||GS-6, W||5.2||1||0||2||13|
|Cliff Melton||4/25/1937||NYG||BSN||CG, L||9||6||3||2||13|
|Steve Woodard||7/28/1997||MIL||TOR||GS-8, W||8||1||0||1||12|
|Juan Marichal||7/19/1960||SFG||PHI||SHO, W||9||1||0||1||12|
|Elmer Myers||10/6/1915||PHA||WSH||SHO, W||9||2||0||5||12|
|Matt Harvey||7/26/2012||NYM||ARI||GS-6, W||5.1||3||0||3||11|
|Don Aase||7/26/1977||BOS||MIL||CG, W||9||9||3||2||11|
|Bob Shirley||4/10/1977||SDP||CIN||GS-9, W||8.2||4||4||4||11|
|Luis Tiant||7/19/1964||CLE||NYY||SHO, W||9||4||0||4||11|
|Danny McDevitt||6/17/1957||BRO||CIN||CG, W||9||7||2||5||11|
|Dick Hall||7/24/1955||PIT||CHC||CG, W||9||9||5||1||11|
|Thomas Diamond||8/3/2010||CHC||MIL||GS-6, L||6||7||3||3||10|
|Johnny Cueto||4/3/2008||CIN||ARI||GS-7, W||7||1||1||0||10|
|Daisuke Matsuzaka||4/5/2007||BOS||KCR||GS-7, W||7||6||1||1||10|
|Aaron Harang||5/25/2002||OAK||TBD||GS-7, W||7||3||0||3||10|
|Mark Prior||5/22/2002||CHC||PIT||GS-6, W||6||4||2||2||10|
|Kazuhisa Ishii||4/6/2002||LAD||COL||GS-6, W||5.2||2||0||3||10|
|Tim Wakefield||7/31/1992||PIT||STL||CG, W||9||6||2||5||10|
|Pedro Astacio||7/3/1992||LAD||PHI||SHO, W||9||3||0||4||10|
|Dave Morehead||4/13/1963||BOS||WSA||SHO, W||9||5||0||4||10|
|Marty McHale||9/28/1910||BOS||CLE||CG, L||8||10||4||3||10|
Only four pitchers in franchise history have managed more than 13 strikeouts in any game, while Peralta’s debut was just the 13th time a Brewers pitcher has had 13 or more.
|Ben Sheets||5/16/04||ATL||CG, W||9||3||1||1||18|
|Mike Fiers||8/14/14||CHC||GS-6, W||6||3||0||1||14|
|Yovani Gallardo||7/15/12||PIT||GS-7, W||7||4||1||0||14|
|Moose Haas||4/12/78||NYY||CG, W||9||5||3||3||14|
|Freddy Peralta||5/13/18||COL||GS-6, W||5.2||1||0||2||13|
|Wily Peralta||9/27/14||CHC||GS-7, W||7||5||1||1||13|
|Yovani Gallardo||9/17/11||CIN||GS-6, W||6||2||1||2||13|
|Dave Bush||7/10/08||COL||GS-8, W||8||3||1||0||13|
|Ben Sheets||8/12/04||ATL||CG(8), L||8||7||4||2||13|
|Jason Bere||6/29/00||PHI||GS-8, W||8||6||3||2||13|
|Teddy Higuera||6/28/87||TOR||GS-7, W||7||9||4||1||13|
|Teddy Higuera||5/19/87||CHW||CG, L||9||8||5||1||13|
Still, his magnificent debut wasn’t entirely without precedent.
Peralta was sharp in his most recent Triple-A start, fanning eight and allowing just two hits in five innings, and has shined at every level as a pro. He made his full-season debut in 2016, breaking out last year in stints with Single-A Carolina and Double-A Biloxi, finishing with a combined 2.63 ERA and 1.16 WHIP in 25 appearances.
He made the jump to Triple-A earlier this year and immediately impressed, pitching 10 shutout innings across his first two starts and allowing just four hits. The only outlier — a three 2/3-inning, 91-pitch dud in late April — was quickly corrected. Peralta allowed five hits and three runs in his next start, then turned in that eight-strikeout performance before joining the Brewers.
Statistics courtesy of MiLB and Baseball reference