Carlos Ramirez finally surrendered an earned run.
After going the entire 2017 season — 47 1/3 innings between Double-A, Triple-A, and the Major Leagues — Ramirez was tagged by Whit Merrifield for a solo bomb in the sixth inning of Wednesday’s blowout loss to the Royals. Ramirez ended up getting drilled for four earned runs on three hits and a walk.
With that run, the book was closed on one of the few interesting storylines left in the Blue Jays 2017 season.
Obviously Ramirez’s streak isn’t the same because it was put together largely in the minors, but it goes down as one of the longest ever for a pitcher.
For the sake of comparison, Orel Hershiser’s shutout streak with the Dodgers in 1988, largely viewed as one of the most unbreakable records in sports, went for 59 innings. The only streaks in the Majors longer than Ramirez’s 47 1/3 are Hershiser, Don Drysdale (58 innings in 1968), Walter Johnson (55 2/3 innings in 1913), and Jack Coombs (53 innings in 1910). The longest streak for a minor leaguer is owned by Cardinals right-hander Brad Thompson, who tossed 57 2/3 scoreless innings for the Tennessee Smokies in 2004.
One especially impressive thing about Ramirez, beyond his excellent stuff and unhittable slider, is his perspective and maturity on the mound.
“You need to have a short mind,” Ramirez said earlier this week to Gregor Chisholm. “One day you do bad, but you’ve got the next day. That happened to me a lot. Don’t think about the last outing. Just keep moving forward.”
Regardless, Ramirez’s streak is damn impressive, and the hype for him is real. After dominating the minor leagues all season and looking excellent in his September big league stint, Ramirez is a sure bet to be a part of the Blue Jays bullpen next season. His breakout season — along with strong showings from Ryan Tepera and Danny Barnes — has given the Blue Jays the flexibility to stretch out Joe Biagini as a starter. Maybe they can even look to do the same with Roberto Osuna.