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MLB 13 RTTS Starting Pitcher (Year 3 / GM 19) 
Posted on December 11, 2013 at 12:38 PM.
Youngster Sets 2 Records, Ties 3rd

Tuesday, July 14, 2015
MINNEAPOLIS, Minnesota (OS) - On a team filled with historic moments and performances for the ages, Yankees starter Brian Happel hurled one of the greatest outings ever by a player wearing the pinstripes. The 20-year-old righty collected 19 strikeouts en route to a dominating 9-1 victory over the Twins.

From the very first inning, it was clear that this night in Minneapolis was going to be a special one. Happel came out firing on all cylinders by striking out the side in the first inning. He did it again in the second inning. Then, three more batters went down via the K.

A single by Irving Falu to lead off the fourth finally broke up the string of strikeouts. But, Happel set two American League records and tied a Major League record in the process. His 9 consecutive whiffs shattered the previous A.L. high of 8 in a row held by four pitchers. The same accomplishment to start the game also set the standard in the A.L. and tied the Major League record.

VIDEO HIGHLIGHTS: A look at Happel's 9 straight strikeouts to start the game.

"I certainly wasn't going into the game looking to strike everyone out," commented Happel afterwards. "I was just focusing on executing good pitches and trying to get outs. The fact that they were all strikeouts to start the game was great. But, it wouldn't have meant much if we lost. Don't get me wrong, I'm excited to have had such a good game, but I'm just as happy, if not more so, that we won."

"That was a pitching clinic and then some," said Yankees Manager Joe Girardi. "You could tell early on that he was on top of his game. By the third inning, I actually wondered if he might just strike out all 27 batters, his stuff was that electric."

As good as Happel was, the single by Falu to start the fourth seemed to rattle the second year starter a bit. He gave up another single to put runners at the corners with nobody out. But, Happel got Justin Morneau to ground into a double play. Falu was able to score from third, but that was the only run the right-hander would allow the rest of the way.

The only other threat came in the fifth, when Happel gave up a lead off triple. But, the runner would stay there after a pop out to first baseman Ryan Howard in foul territory and two more strikeouts.

Happel walks off the mound after yet another inning-ending strikeout. He'd finish with 19, 1 shy of the MLB record for a game.

"As a player in the field, when you're watching something like this, it's just an amazing boost," said Yanks second baseman Robinson Cano. "Brian had a great pace, and you just felt like even if he got into a bases loaded, nobody out jam, he'd find a way out of it without giving up a run. It was just an awesome thing to watch tonight."

Those two K's to end the fifth propelled Happel on another potential record setting journey. Two more batters went down swinging in the sixth and seventh innings. Another strikeout got the youngster to 17 after eight innings. Back-to-back whiffs in the ninth had him within reach of tying the Major League record of 20 in a game held by Roger Clemens and Kerry Wood.

But, Happel would have to settle for second place, as Morneau popped out to end the game. The complete game effort was Happel's third of the season. And, the mind-numbing amount of strikeouts has him on pace for 300 this season. Curt Schilling and Randy Johnson are the last pitchers to reach that milestone, both accomplishing the feat in 2002 with Arizona.

"I'm not worrying about numbers right now. I just want to get outs and help the team win," said Happel. "I'll reflect on any other accomplishments in the offseason. Right now, it's all about winning."

New York Yankees at Minnesota Twins
Jul 14, 2015123456789RHE
New York (44-47)2020203009130
Minnesota (31-59)000100000142
W: Brian Happel (9-6) L: Trevor May (2-5)
New York Yankees
Williams CF611000.271
Brignac SS432110.230
Cano 2B511201.300
Granderson DH221130.243
Austin RF510000.200
Beltre 3B512100.212
Howard 1B503201.247
Buck C403211.231
Peguero LF500003.193
2B: J. Buck 2 (6), C. Granderson (20), R. Brignac 2 (13)
HR: R. Cano (31)
RBI: A. Beltre (28), R. Howard 2 (18), R. Cano 2 (67), J. Buck 2 (9), C. Granderson (59), R. Brignac (22)
PB: J. Buck (2)
New York Yankees
B. Happel (W, 9-6)9.04110192.37
Minnesota Twins
Falu SS412002.217
Dozier 2B401002.260
Morneau 1B400002.239
Plouffe 3B300002.245
Arcia RF301002.218
Buxton CF300001.189
Guyer DH300003.227
Ramirez LF300002.212
Smith C300003.198
3B: O. Arcia (2)
GIDP: J. Morneau
E: T. Plouffe (3), B. Buxton (6)
Minnesota Twins
T. May (L, 2-5)4.1766254.55
P. Walters1.2200105.31
B. Duensing2.0332216.75
J. Howell1.0100004.47

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