The Stephen Strasburg flu game will go down in baseball lore.
After almost not starting Wednesday’s Game 4 of the National League Division Series against the Chicago Cubs – a must-win game for the Washington Nationals – Strasburg set a franchise record for strikeouts in a postseason game, punching out 12 batters over seven shutout frames.
Strasburg struck out the side in the third and seventh innings. In the fourth inning, the 29-year-old recorded three strikeouts around a Willson Contreras single. In total, the Cubs mustered just three hits and two walks before Adam Lind pinch-hit for the former first-overall pick in the eighth inning.
Strasburg held the previous record of 10 – set four days ago during Game 1 – so he technically set the new standard with his 11th K before collecting No. 12.
Not until Wednesday morning was Strasburg confirmed as the Game 4 starter, less than 24 hours after skipper Dusty Baker said he was too ill to make the start.
Ryan Madson and Sean Doolittle were summoned from the bullpen for an inning apiece to close out the shutout victory and force a Game 5 back in Washington. Over the final two frames, Madson and Doolittle combined to allow a pair of baserunners while striking out two.
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