On Wednesday night, New York Yankees pitcher Domingo German achieved a perfect game against the Oakland Athletics, allowing no hits or walks on 99 pitches in an 11-0 victory. Despite a turbulent season marked by a suspension and a sub-.500 record, German displayed exceptional skill against the last-place Athletics, recording nine strikeouts while mixing his pitches effectively. This marked the fourth perfect game in Yankees franchise history and the first in Major League Baseball since 2012. German became the first Dominican-born pitcher to achieve a perfect game and the first player in MLB history to do so after allowing 10 or more runs in his previous start. German’s stellar performance brought him back to form after a couple of rough outings, receiving praise from his teammates and coaches. The win improved the Yankees’ recent performance, and Giancarlo Stanton’s homer and three RBIs contributed to the offensive surge.
ESPN News Services; June 29, 2023
OAKLAND, Calif. — Domingo German authored a perfect game against the Oakland Athletics on Wednesday night, as the New York Yankees starter allowed no hits and no walks on 99 pitches in an 11-0 victory.
In an up-and-down season that has included a suspension and a sub-.500 record headed into Wednesday’s start, German was masterful against the last-place Athletics, mixing his pitches, keeping his defense busy and engaged and posting nine strikeouts along the way.
German’s effort was the fourth perfect game in franchise history, and across MLB, it’s the first perfect game since Seattle’s Felix Hernandez delivered one on Aug. 15, 2012.
The first pitcher born in the Dominican Republic to pitch a perfect game, German also became the first player in MLB history to reach that feat after allowing 10-plus runs in his previous start, according to ESPN Stats & Information research. He joins Don Larsen (1956), David Wells (1998) and David Cone (1999) as Yankees pitchers to achieve the milestone. Larsen’s gem came in Game 5 of the 1956 World Series against the Brooklyn Dodgers.
When asked on his postgame interview on the YES Network when he started thinking about throwing a perfect game, German, through an interpreter, said “all game long.”
“I’m just happy for Domingo. He’s had a rough last couple starts and been dragging a little bit,” New York catcher Kyle Higashioka said. “For him to do this and get back to being himself? I always felt like if anyone, he had a really good chance to do something like this. For it to all come together tonight, it’s just amazing.”
German, who allowed 15 earned runs on 15 hits in 5 1/3 innings over his previous two starts, appeared to get stronger as the game wore on. In the ninth inning, he needed only six pitches to complete the game.
“So exciting. When you think about something very unique in baseball, you know not many people have an opportunity to pitch a perfect game,” German said. “To accomplish something like this in my career, you know, it’s something that I am going to remember forever, be part of history, so exciting.”
Winless in six previous outings against Oakland, German threw 72 of 99 pitches for strikes. He mixed 51 curveballs and 30 fastballs that averaged 92.5 mph with 17 changeups and one sinker.
“He threw strikes, he pounded the zone, obviously. You don’t not throw strikes when you go nine innings and don’t get a baserunner,” Oakland manager Mark Kotsay said. “Overall, offensively, our approach wasn’t great. We didn’t make any adjustments tonight to what he was doing.”
The win was New York’s third in its past four games and the first of a Yankees road trip that will also include a weekend stop in St. Louis.
Just more than a month ago, German was suspended 10 games by Major League Baseball after using too much rosin on his hands in a start vs. the Toronto Blue Jays. He told reporters a week later that he would use less rosin and apologized to his teammates.
German was disciplined after being ejected in the fourth inning of New York’s 6-3 win in Toronto on May 16. He retired the first nine hitters before his hands were checked by first-base umpire D.J. Reyburn as German headed to the mound for the fourth inning.
After the game, crew chief James Hoye said German had “the stickiest hand I’ve ever felt.”
The win in Oakland, however, boosted his record to 5-5 and saw an uncharacteristic burst of offense from German’s teammates. The Yankees broke out in the sixth inning, plating six runs, and tacked on three more in the ninth.
Giancarlo Stanton homered and drove in three runs in the win. It was his seventh long ball of the season.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
Photo: Wikimedia Commons