Wednesday night's Red Sox-Yankees game featured Rick Porcello versus CC Sabathia, in what has to be the least compelling matchup of former Cy Young winners ever. The Yankees won easily, 8-0, behind a very strong effort from Sabathia.
Sabathia went 8 shutout innings on 95 pitches, giving up only five hits. Not too shabby for the 36-year-old lefty. His game score—a stat created by Bill James—was 77. If you're unfamiliar with it, game score is pretty simple:
- Start with 50
- +1 for each out recorded (24 for CC)
- +2 for each inning completed after the 4th (8 for CC)
- +1 for each strikeout (5 for CC)
- -2 for each hit (-10 for CC)
- -4 for each earned run (0 for CC)
- -2 for each unearned run (0 for CC)
- -1 for each walk (0 for CC)
I know it's not a perfect way to measure a pitcher's effectiveness in any given start, but I think it makes for great debate and is an easy way to find dominant performances. Rick Porcello was not dominant on Wednesday, compiling a game score of just 38.
Sabathia's 77 was his highest game score since 2012—a stretch of 111 starts and 670 innings. The last time he topped 77 was October 12, 2012 in Game 5 of the ALDS against the Orioles. Sabathia threw a complete game, giving up just one run on four hits while striking out nine. That comes out to a game score of 82. The last regular season start to top 77 was just a couple weeks before that on September 21, 2012 against the A's: 8 IP, 3 H, 2 BB, 11 SO, 0 R (85 game score). Sabathia's highest career game score is 87, a four-hit shutout of the Rays on July 10, 2011.