Find of the Day: Kerry Wood 20 Strikeout Game 5-6-98
Today is the 10th anniversary of this game, the one that some would argue both defined Kerry Wood and ruined him at the same time. It may well be the most dominating single pitching performance of the modern era. (No bias there AT ALL.)
My favorites are the last two strikeouts (19 and 20) on breaking balls that are just ridiculous.
Of course, the action that he was able to put on such pitches eventually ruined his arm and required him to be shut down by the end of the ’98 season. He’s required several surgeries since, but has remained in town and is currently closing for the Cubs.
My wife (then my girlfriend) was horrified by the fact that shortly after this game, I proudly brought home a Kerry Wood plaque to display in our apartment. I was told that I couldn’t hang it up until Wood pitched a no-hitter. I’m still waiting for that to happen. She’s pretty clever, no?
They’ll show a replay of this game on WGN occasionally during rain delays, and it’s a great one to watch. I get goosebumps all over just thinking about it, and it’s one reason among many why I still love Kerry Wood to this day. Kinda hoping he makes an appearance today just for the ovation he’ll get 10 years later for this accomplishment in front of a Cincinnati crowd that is technically 30-50% Cubs fans.