While Detroit Tigers pitchers Justin Verlander and Max Scherzer are leading Major League Baseball in strikeouts (Scherzer is currently first with 224, Verlander is next with 223) from an individual standpoint the Tampa Bay Rays pitching staff has been recording third strikes with regularity in 2012 as well. Tonight James Shields was on the mound for Tampa Bay and when Toronto Blue Jays catcher J.P. Arencibia went down swinging in the second inning he became part of history.
The Rays recorded eleven strikeouts in their 12-1 victory over the Jays, bringing the team’s season total to 1,275 with eleven games remaining. The previous AL record was held by the 2001 Yankees who were led by Mike Mussina (214), Roger Clemens (213), Andy Pettitte (164), and Ted Lilly (112).
Here’s the current breakdown of the Rays staff via MLB.com.