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20 | The History Behind Kerry Wood's 20 Strikeout Game

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47:07   |   Sep 19, 2018

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20 | The History Behind Kerry Wood's 20 Strikeout Game
20 | The History Behind Kerry Wood's 20 Strikeout Game thumb 20 | The History Behind Kerry Wood's 20 Strikeout Game thumb 20 | The History Behind Kerry Wood's 20 Strikeout Game thumb

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  • - [Chip Caray] We have a treat for you today. Youngster from Texas will take the mound.
  • He is Kerry Wood.
  • - [Pat] His name starts with a K, and you're going to see a lot of Ks
  • in the score book.
  • - [Jim Riggleman] Everybody was just in awe of what they were watching.
  • - [David Kaplan] "You've got to turn this game on." Because we were seeing history.
  • - [Pat] I'm just happy that I got to see it.
  • - [Chip Caray] The 0-2. Got it. He's tied the record.
  • - Those of you lucky enough to have witnessed this have seen something
  • you might not see again.
  • ♪ [music] ♪
  • - [Chip Caray] As Chicago natives would say, it was a typically beautiful early
  • May day. It was cloudy. It was gray. It was misty. It was raw.
  • - [Brian Garza] It was a weekday game in May, so you're not expecting a huge crowd
  • inside the ballpark.
  • - [Joe Mantegna] And in a way it's perfect that it was only about 15,000 people and it was kind
  • of a rainy day. It was like, this is hardcore Cub fan day.
  • We went out on the field before the game. Because of bleacher bums,
  • I got to know some of the Cubs pretty well, like Santo, like Billy Williams.
  • Some of...especially the old guard. And Billy was out there. He said to me,
  • he says, "Well, you'd better watch this young boy pitching today, this Kerry Wood.
  • He's something. He's got some fire today."
  • - [Chip Caray] Big day today. The gunslinger Kerry Wood takes the mound.
  • - [Carrie Muskat] First round pick, hard-throwing kid. There was always hype
  • every time Woody would start.
  • - [Ron Santo] Been around baseball a long time, and haven't seen a kid like this come
  • up to the big leagues.
  • - [Terry Adams] We were struggling a little bit and needed a guy, and they brought him up.
  • - [Broadcaster] Three-two pitch. Struck him out.
  • - [Terry Adams] Of course, you know, everybody was keeping tabs on this,
  • game-to-game basis.
  • - If you did have butterflies, you didn't show it outwardly.
  • - [Kerry Wood] I guess I pitch a little better on nerves, I guess. The media attention,
  • as a 20-year-old, it was uncomfortable. I mean, my comfort zone was on the field
  • and on the mound. So it was a little bit overwhelming.
  • - [Caray] I think that when a young guy comes up, you wonder, "Okay, just how good is
  • his stuff?" And hitters usually tell you pretty quickly how good his stuff is.
  • - [Broadcaster] His dad schooled him to be like Nolan Ryan in the leg kick and that whole thing,
  • and he's followed Roger Clemens as well.
  • - [Jim Deshaies] The whole Texas angle. But no one...Clemens had been pitching
  • against the Astros. It was, like, a storybook kind of theme.
  • - [Caray] Houston leading the Central Division with a record of 20 and 11.
  • Here is Larry Dierker starting lineup.
  • - These were the killer bees. I mean, this was a team that
  • everybody heard about.
  • - [David Kaplan] He's got to face Bagwell, and Biggio, and Derek Bell,
  • and that team is loaded.
  • - [Broadcaster] And they can hit. They can hit for power. They can run.
  • The Houston Astros probably are the toughest task for any starting pitcher.
  • - [Wood] I knew who they were, for sure. I just didn't know what that lineup
  • together was capable of doing, which was probably a good thing.
  • - [Broadcaster] Last night they ran at will. Today may be a different story.
  • Sandy Martinez in the lineup today.
  • - [Caray] He's one of the great trivia questions of all time. Who was the catcher that
  • caught Kerry Wood's 20-strikeout game? It wasn't Scott Servais,
  • but it was Sandy Martinez.
  • - [Kevin Orie] Anything, coming off the bench in baseball is probably the hardest thing,
  • I think, in any sport, to do.
  • - [Wood] I was the young guy. He was, you know, the backup catcher. Our starting catcher
  • probably got the top of the rotation guy.
  • - [Kaplan] Usually you're looking for chemistry with your battery mate,
  • and they think alike, and, "Hey, we've got to face this guy,
  • and we both know how we're going to get him out." They had never really done
  • anything like that.
  • - [Wood] Got out to the bullpen and started warming up for the game,
  • and I don't think I threw one strike in my 40-something warm-up pitches.
  • I grabbed the ball, and then turned to Phil Regan and flipped him the ball
  • and said, "I mean, it can't get any worse."
  • - [Caray] Jerry Meals, the home plate umpire, he may be a key man in this ball game
  • for Kerry Wood. You talked about that a bit last night.
  • - [Steve Stone] Well, I think it really depends on just exactly what strike zone Kerry Wood is
  • going to get.
  • - [Wood] I'd warmed up, like I said before, and didn't throw any strikes.
  • And I figured I wasn't going to lay one in there. Just threw it as hard as I could.
  • - [Caray] And the first pitch.
  • - [Stone] That knocked the mask right off the head of Jerry Meals.
  • - Sandy just misses it. - [Caray] Wow. That is some heat, folks.
  • - [Jerry Meals] I was like, "What just happened?" You know,
  • I was running through my head at the time, "What happened yesterday?
  • Did something happen on the field that the Cubs are upset with me or something?"
  • You know, I'm running it through my mind, "Do I need to run this guy?"
  • - [Wood] I don't think Meals was looking for, you know, 98 off the face on the first
  • pitch of the game. It kind of caught everybody off-guard.
  • - [Deshaies] Oh, that is not going to endear Sandy Martinez to Jerry Meals. What a start.
  • - [Billy Williams] The ball went all the way to the backstop. That ball went all the way
  • to the backstop. And I said, "Man, he's throwing hard today."
  • - [Caray] Two strikes. Got him with the heat.
  • - [Stone] And Biggio swinging way late, and that's one of the worst swings
  • you'll see him take.
  • - [Caray] As the day, it continues, and he changes speed, so Bell strikes out.
  • - The gunslinger ready, the two-two. Strike, three tall. He punched out
  • the order in the first. That will do it for the Astros.
  • - [Wood] So, even though I struck out a side in the first inning, I sat down and was like,
  • "How did I just strike out a side?" Like, "What just happened?
  • I didn't throw a strike in the first last 30 minutes, and I just struck out a side
  • the first inning."
  • - [Hughes] What an opening inning for Kerry Wood, striking out the side. Wow.
  • - The fans still kind of buzzing after Kerry Wood banned Biggio, Bell,
  • and Bagwell in the top of the first.
  • - [Matt Erickson] I was one of the first ones into the bleachers that day.
  • And this guy showed up. He's got this stack of Ks on the back of,
  • you know, poster board, and ridiculously energetic,
  • and kind of asking, "Who wants to hold up K signs and watch this kid make history?"
  • You didn't have to follow the Cubs too closely to think, "Well,
  • you're crazy, dude." But that's how I met Tom.
  • - [Kim Corning] "Kerry, you have a tremendous career ahead of you,
  • not only as a pitcher but as an influence on kids all over Chicagoland.
  • Thanks for your time, Tom Bujnowski. P.S., I will have the K signs in the bleachers
  • for your next home start." And he really did,
  • but he didn't have enough.
  • - [Jake Bujnowski] The Ks definitely were for Kerry. As a rational 24-year-old now, yeah,
  • it's crazy that he made the signs for this one guy when he wasn't proven yet,
  • you know? It was just, there was hope that he
  • was going to be good.
  • - [Broadcaster] Jack Howell is going to try to become the first man to make contact
  • in this game.
  • - [Erickson] I was the fourth K in the bleachers that day, and at that point I'm going,
  • "This is fantastic. I'm going to get to hold one of these up
  • without question," right? I mean, Jack Howell was my guy,
  • the clean-up guy that day.
  • - [Hughes] Here's the wind-up and the one-two, and Howell strikes out swinging.
  • That's four in a row.
  • - [Erickson] From the first out in the second inning all the way onward for the rest
  • of the game, I was getting a workout.
  • - [Hughes] Ronnie, we were wondering who has the record for the most strikeouts to start
  • a game, consecutive strikeouts. Well, the Major League record's set by a guy
  • in the press box today, Jim Deshaies.
  • - [Santo] I'll be darned. - For the Astros.
  • - [Broadcaster] Well, Jim's going to think this one over a little bit now. He's got seven.
  • He's working on eight in a row to get this ballgame underway. This is amazing.
  • Eight consecutive strikeouts. Every player is up on the railing
  • applauding along with the crowd. Look at them, everybody.
  • - [Deshaies] For a lot of folks, it was more of a curiosity. It was, you know,
  • "How did that happen?"
  • My fastball doesn't really record.
  • It's not a, you know, real high, 90-plus fastball. But as long as it's
  • working for me, I don't care what the number is.
  • So, I started with eight in a row to start the ballgame. I finished with 10.
  • I mean, you expend a lot of energy. So, you know, I went the whole game,
  • but I only struck out 10. To maintain that stuff and to dominate
  • hitters for nine innings the way he did, there's no comparison. You know,
  • mine was kind of a neat thing and something I could always hang on to,
  • and I had a real nice game. His is, you know, probably the most dominant game
  • ever pitched.
  • - [Broadcaster] Whoa, and he comes up and in for his fifth consecutive strikeout.
  • - [Deshaies] That's one of the few times this year we've seen Moises Alou get beat
  • by a fastball.
  • - [Ricky Gutierrez] Moises was hitting in front of me. Always gauged my...a guy that I knew
  • had good stuff and threw hard, I always gauged, you know, went to him.
  • That day was probably the only day I've ever seen a fastball dominate him.
  • - [Stone] And yet another strikeout. Five in a row.
  • - [Gutierrez] That day when I asked him, "How's he throwing?"
  • He just gave me a look, like... Then he said, "Good luck."
  • - [Broadcaster] Six consecutive outs for Kerry Wood,
  • but Clark kept the ball in play. Nothing-nothing.
  • - [Caray] People who think pitching performances or pitchers' duels are boring,
  • watch this game. You had Shane Reynolds matching Kerry Wood pitch for pitch.
  • No quarter given, no quarter taken. I mean, these guys just went
  • after each other, and it was unbelievable.
  • - [Riggleman] Reynolds, I managed, you know, clubs against him in the minor leagues.
  • I had a lot of history with him, and he was an extremely tough pitcher,
  • and he was tough on us that day. But we scratched out one early.
  • - [Caray] That's deep enough to score the run.
  • Tagging from third is Grace. Cubs lead it one to nothing.
  • - [Riggleman] Kerry just...he made that enough.
  • - [Deshaies] He's given up an unearned run and probably thinks he can't allow too much
  • more the way things are going.
  • - And I'm sure Wood's thinking the same thing watching Shane Reynolds pitch,
  • realizing that he's got to be at the top of his game to compete with Shane.
  • - [Wood] It really kept me from getting caught up and focusing on the strikeouts,
  • and it was a one to nothing game until the eighth inning. I would have hated
  • to have been, you know, in his shoes that day, to have, you know,
  • have a gem like that go to waste and get an L for it. But he was definitely
  • locked in, too.
  • - [Caray] An unearned run the difference so far. The Cubs lead it one to nothing.
  • Ricky Gutierrez will lead off the Astro third. And he finally makes contact.
  • - [Gutierrez] I was just trying to put the ball in play, you know? I had two strikes,
  • so I was just trying to make contact, you know? Either fight off a fastball or,
  • you know, and he was...he happened to throw a curveball at me.
  • Probably the worst pitch of the game.
  • - [Wood] It was a backup, bad breaking ball and just a dumb pitch.
  • - [Caray] Long outing for it. To the left side, off Orie's glove into left field for
  • a base hit.
  • - [Wood] And it wasn't a good swing, and it wasn't a hard hit.
  • It just found the hole, and... but, base hit all the way.
  • - [Kaplan] And that turns out to be, like, "Oh my goodness, he could have had
  • a no-hitter." And that one moment in time will always be linked to this
  • 20-strikeout performance.
  • - [Gutierrez] The two years I was there, I always gave him crap about it.
  • I once told him, I said, "You'll remember me for the rest
  • of your life." I said, "You'll remember that name,
  • Ricky Gutierrez, for the rest of your life." He would just tell me,
  • "Get outta here."
  • - [Wood] He brought it up to me every day. Every day. Every time he walked by me,
  • he would say something. I can't repeat it here,
  • but he would say something.
  • - [Gutierrez] It's always nice to go down in, you know, history with a guy pitching
  • a great performance like that and you mess it up.
  • - [Broadcaster] I'm not sure he got his glove on it. On that replay, it didn't appear that
  • he did. At first I thought he had.
  • - [Deshaies] Yeah, I thought he did. I'm surprised that's not an error.
  • - [Orie] I thought I should have made that play. If I would have been, like, maybe,
  • in a comfortable spot defensively to get that little extra angle or just commit
  • to the dive right away. And worst case, you get up, you try to throw him out
  • to be safe, and then you might have somebody say, "Why did he dive?'
  • - [Erickson] I don't know where they got the poster board from, but the E-5 was really almost
  • a lobbying to the official scorekeeper thinking, "God, if he sees this,
  • maybe he'll change it."
  • - [Orie] I came right in to the clubhouse. The media was everywhere.
  • Right away I just said, "Hey, just give me an error.
  • Let's just make this simple." They didn't. And so, so here we are.
  • - [Wood] You know, I could tell he was physically...not emotional,
  • but he was a little distraught and worried that it was going to be the only hit,
  • and then when it happened, he was apologetic and wanted the error.
  • You know, for him to come out and say "Yeah," you know, like,
  • "Give me the error, give me... I want to..." You know, he should do that.
  • But that's...it was a hit all the way.
  • - [Stone] There's no doubt that Sandy Martinez is the best-throwing of the Cub catchers.
  • He's got a quick release. He's normally very accurate.
  • - [Caray] Got him swinging. Snap throw to first.
  • - [Muskat] The guy who deserves some credit is Sandy Martinez. Here's a guy who hadn't
  • caught him that much, and he's part of history.
  • - [Hughes] You can hear Sandy Martinez's glove popping all the way upstairs.
  • - Sandy did an excellent job behind the plate. Kerry obviously felt comfortable
  • working with him.
  • - [Wood] I liked his visual. I liked throwing to Sandy.
  • I liked his energy. I liked the way he was... You know, there's a game
  • between...there's a game within the game, as most people know.
  • The catcher and the pitcher have their own game going on with the hitter, and then,
  • you know, the game that everybody else gets to see. And we were on the same page.
  • - [Adams] And we could see him fist-pumping, telling him to put the ball right here.
  • He was on one knee. I mean, he was doing the Tony Peña, squatted down.
  • You know, doing a split back there, getting low.
  • - [Wood] He's confident enough to sit down where he...if I spike this,
  • he can't get out of the way. So he must think that I can throw
  • this where... "Right here."
  • - [Caray] Say, it looks to me like Sandy's got a brand new catcher's mitt.
  • - [Stone] Well, he'd better have a little extra padding in there or his hand's going to be
  • about twice the size as the other.
  • - [Orie] To come in as a catcher and be able to do that with a guy that had the stuff that
  • Kerry did was also something that needs to be respected and certainly discussed.
  • - [Broadcaster] You notice the number Kerry Wood is wearing?
  • - Thirty-four. Nolan Ryan's number. I wonder if he asked for that
  • for that reason.
  • - Seems to fit so far.
  • - [Wood] I saw Nolan Ryan's last no-hitter. I was at that game. I was 13.
  • It was unbelievable. I mean, I was in the outfield. We got there early.
  • I caught a BP home run ball. It was, like, the greatest day of my life.
  • They were cheering after every out. I did feel the same way during my game.
  • - [Broadcaster] That's it. Number seven is in the books.
  • - [Wood] You watch the game, you see the no-hitter,
  • everybody's going crazy. And then you're a kid,
  • so what you're doing, you're picking up all the ticket stubs
  • because you think, "Oh, this is the greatest day ever."
  • I was told early in my career by a veteran player that, you know,
  • every time you go out there to pitch... he always imagined there was a bunch
  • of 10-year-old kids watching the game for the first time. And you're the example he
  • has of what a baseball player's supposed to do, or how he's supposed to act.
  • And that stuck with me as a young player, so I always look at that.
  • I have a responsibility to act a certain way, to be a certain way on the field,
  • because someone out there is getting a moment, a memory in their life, you know,
  • that they're not going to forget.
  • - [Caray] Got him with it again. - [Hughes] Two-two to Howell.
  • - Fastball got him looking. - [Caray] The oh-two.
  • - Strike three called.
  • - [Hughes] Now the strike two pitch on the way. - Got him looking.
  • - [Caray] Struck out the last four men he's faced. Make it five in a row
  • and 11 in the game.
  • - [Caray] I don't remember seeing a guy whose fastball had such unbelievable movement
  • and whose breaking stuff had such unbelievable movement.
  • - [Wood] My stuff was always there. It was just a question of whether I knew
  • where it was going to go.
  • - [Caray] His slider was exploding. It had another...you're getting
  • to the plate, and then it just dropped. And we're talking 16,
  • 18 inches of vertical break. The hitters, when that pitch was on, had no chance.
  • - [Adams] It was just unbelievable for Sandy to sit there and say, "Here,
  • put it right here," and Kerry rear back and throw it 98, 99, and put it...
  • that glove didn't move.
  • - [Gutierrez] After I got that hit, I guess he got mad at me.
  • I didn't see anything else but fastballs. I remember he threw a fastball
  • and I didn't even see it.
  • - [Mantegna] What I often take my cue from is the opposing batter. They seemed a little
  • baffled by things.
  • - [Deshaies] There's a lot of guessing. You've got no chance to catch up to a 97,
  • 98 mile fastball when you're, you know, telling yourself to stay back
  • on the curveball.
  • - [Caray] Wood's pitching not like a 20-year-old but like a 20-year veteran today.
  • - [Williams] And what if I had have been up there at the plate with Woody throwing the
  • ball today? And I say, it was similar to Sandy Koufax.
  • He had a good fastball. The fastball was about 98. 97, 98,
  • and had a good breaking ball. Good slider, ball was moving real good. And I said,
  • "This is the closest thing to Sandy Koufax's perfect game as I've seen."
  • - [Wood] I was able to do things that, you know, I've searched for the rest of my career
  • to try to do. I was chasing those moments, you know, for the next 15 years.
  • But I was able to do things that day that, I don't know, it was just one of those
  • days I can't really describe other than it being just slower motion,
  • and it just seemed to be a lot easier that day.
  • - [Caray] The lights are on and no one's home. At least that's the case for the
  • Astros today. See ya later. Twelve strikeouts and two outs
  • in the Houston sixth.
  • - [Stone] You can see 12, right across the board.
  • - [Wood] I didn't really start noticing until about the fourth inning. You know,
  • there was...you know, a few more of them starting to add up.
  • I didn't count them. Couldn't tell at the time what it was.
  • I could just see that it was "K," something white in the middle,
  • and I could see the red and blue.
  • - [Brad Hofvander] What Tom did is he got clip art, for lack of a better term,
  • of two baseball bats and a baseball.
  • - [Bujnowski] The broken baseball bats with the ball in the center to form the "K."
  • It was this idea that the pitcher, you know, if they're getting strikeouts,
  • if they're racking up Ks, they're missing bats.
  • - [Erickson] And they were pretty big. They were on the back of poster board.
  • He had laminated over the top of them.
  • - [Hofvander] And he made eight in red and eight in blue. Brought them all out there and ended
  • up using all 16 of them.
  • - [Muskat] The kids were smart enough that they did a called strike, I think they turned
  • them backwards, which was good.
  • - [Santo] Different colors, Ks. You know, I've never seen that since I've been
  • a player or a broadcast, ever, anybody having the Ks out there
  • in the bleachers.
  • - [Erickson] Not only did Tom show up with all these "K" signs, but he also showed up with any
  • jersey that he could find that had a "34" on it.
  • - [Bujnowski] The idea was that Kerry was going to be the next great 34. Hakeem Olajuwon,
  • Charles Barkley, and then there's a Shaq jersey in there, too.
  • - [Wood] Lakers, yeah. The Lakers jerseys, yeah. I do remember the jerseys,
  • now that you say that, yeah, and the Lakers jersey sticks
  • out for some reason.
  • - [Erickson] And people put those on to help, kind of, boost just the morale of,
  • "We're here for Woody today." And again, that was that kind of crazy thing
  • about him is that he knew what he was getting into when he went to the park
  • that day. None of the rest of us did. How he knew, I don't know.
  • I don't think we'll ever understand that. But he just...he knew.
  • - [Hughes] Jerry Meals, the home plate umpire today, has certainly been busy pumping
  • out that right arm.
  • - [Santo] He really has, and he's giving about two or three inches off the plate,
  • that expanded strike zone for both sides.
  • - [Wood] I've made comments in the past about the strike zone, and I think what we see is
  • the strike threes. And a lot of them, I think, were maybe a little generous
  • at times.
  • - [Meals] Back in the day before all the electronics that we have now,
  • guys were hitting spots all day long. Doesn't matter who it was,
  • you were an inch off the plate or two inches off the plate, nobody said a word.
  • They expected it to be called a strike.
  • - [Orie] You had it going as a pitcher, and the umpire knew you had that stuff,
  • and you were consistent in those spots, and getting, really,
  • hitters to look foolish consistently? You will get the benefit of the doubt.
  • - [Wood] I mean, I wasn't getting Maddux and Glavine stuff like they were in the '90s,
  • but it was...you know, I got, there was five or six that were
  • questionable to today's strike zone.
  • - [Meals] And again, Shane Reynolds had 10 strikeouts that day.
  • That's baseball then and earlier compared to the way it is now.
  • - [Kaplan] You'd see balls this far off the plate, ring them up. But they couldn't have hit
  • Kerry with a boat oar that day.
  • - [Caray] Got it.
  • - [Meals] Kerry was dominant, and they were frustrated with not being
  • able to put the bat on the ball.
  • - [Hughes] And the payoff pitch. Swing and a miss. Strike three. That's 14 for Kerry Wood.
  • - [Caray] One ball, two strikes. Did he go? Yes, he did.
  • - [Meals] Moises Alou was upset with Terry Tata because he rung him up when I went
  • to check for...on a check swing. Threw his bat and got an equipment fine
  • out of it, so...
  • - [Wood] I always liked seeing Moises slam his bat down and yell at the umpire,
  • so I like his check-swing strikeout.
  • - [Caray] He strikes out the side again as we go to the seventh inning stretch.
  • ♪ Take me out to the crowd ♪
  • - [Mantegna] When I got to that end of the song, you know, because normally, you know,
  • there's, "One, two..." ♪ ...two, three strikes you're out ♪
  • ♪ at the old... ...at the old ball game. ♪
  • "Let's go Cubbies." But that day I yelled, "Go Kerry."
  • Go Kerry.
  • So I'd like to think that I was somewhat responsible for those last
  • couple strikeouts.
  • - [Caray] The rain really starting to come down now here in the bottom half of the
  • seventh inning. You have to wonder how long the umpires are going to let this
  • thing go on.
  • - [Wood] I really just was hoping he wasn't going to call the game or pull the tarp.
  • - [Broadcaster] I think, Tim, if you're Larry Dierker right now, what you pray for is
  • about an hour-and-a-half rain delay, get Kerry Wood out of there,
  • and hope to come back at the bullpen.
  • - [Hughes] Ron Santo said, "It's raining pretty hard. If it gets any harder,
  • they're going to have to delay the game." And of course it would have
  • been heartbreaking, because that could have meant that it would have been an hour
  • rain delay, and Kerry Wood, despite his phenomenal game,
  • might not have been able to return after the delay,
  • and he would never have struck out 20.
  • - [Brown] The rain is moving in. That's the last thing we need
  • for a pitcher's duel, Jim Deshaies.
  • - [Deshaies] Yeah, it's raining pretty hard out there right now.
  • - If it starts to get to the point where it's slippery and he's starting to lose it
  • a little bit, it can influence the umpire's decisions. I've seen that where
  • guys were...literally will call the umpire out.
  • - [Caray] The rule of thumb is, if the pitchers are uncomfortable,
  • they first do some work on the mound. Add Diamond Dry, tamp down the clay on the
  • slope of the mound. They do everything they can to make sure that the pitchers'
  • footing is secure.
  • - [Wood] I threw three or four pitches, I think, where I slipped six,
  • seven inches when I landed, and the ball just still went right
  • to the glove. So it was just one of those days. Reynolds didn't seem to be having
  • a difficult time gripping the ball, and landing, and all that stuff.
  • It was just in such a zone and such a groove and didn't want to stop.
  • - [Orie] He was able to not think about any of that distraction weather-wise and go
  • out and execute the way he did, which is another tap on his shoulder.
  • - [Wood] Came down pretty hard there for about 10 minutes, and then it tapered off a little
  • bit and we were able to, kind of, finish the game.
  • - [Hughes] The Cubs in back of Kerry Wood lead the Astros one to nothing. Wood with no walks.
  • - [Santo] If he doesn't walk anybody, he's going to strike out a lot of guys.
  • - [Hughes] And he's going to win a lot of games. - [Santo] You'd better believe it.
  • - [Wood] In the minor leagues, their biggest concern when they sent me
  • down is, "We want you to stop walking guys and get the control issue under control."
  • - [Caray] The learning curve for guys is making adjustments. It's difficult to get to the
  • Major Leagues. It's even more difficult to stay, and if you don't adjust, you won't.
  • - [Broadcaster] We go to the eighth inning. Dave Clark, the former Cub, will lead off for Houston.
  • - [Wood] I went three-one on Clark, and Gracie had told me before the game,
  • "I don't care if you're throwing 120 miles an hour, you throw him too many fastballs
  • and he's going to hit it on to Sheffield.
  • - [Caray] The three-one to Clark. Three and two.
  • - [Wood] So I got three-two on him and remembered that. I was kind of afraid to throw him
  • a fastball, so I, you know, broke him off.
  • - [Caray] Got him.
  • - [Orie] He was out front waiting, and then the bottom just dropped off.
  • And most guys probably would not have been able to hold the bat the way they
  • did without, you know, breaking their wrist.
  • - [Hughes] Clark with a half swing. It'll cost him a full strike.
  • - [Orie] And the grimace on his face, it was...that was enjoyable.
  • - [Hughes] The control was amazing. Whenever you think about 20 strikeouts and
  • no walks, that pretty much tells you all you need to know right there.
  • - [Wood] Just because there's a little backstory, that's probably my favorite one
  • of the group. But...and there's not a strikeout I don't like.
  • - [Santo] How about the Ks out in left field? - [Hughes] Hope they brought
  • a good supply of those today, Ron. - Yeah.
  • - [Caray] I just remember seeing the strikeouts adding up, and I was thinking,
  • "Those folks are going to have to go to a Kmart or a Circle K to get
  • a few more signs."
  • - [Santo] Probably, if they run out, those bleacher bums are...one thing
  • they'll do, they'll take their shirt off and put a K on their chest.
  • - [Wood] I feel like they ran out. I feel like there were some people that
  • didn't have shirts on.
  • - [Erickson] I know that he was in the background in the second row and the third row trying
  • to get people that were willing to take their shirts off and figure out a way
  • to get four more, because we can't have 16 signs if he strikes out 17.
  • I don't know who he recruited, but there were four people who were
  • willing to do it.
  • - [Caray] The oh-two. Got him. He's tied the record.
  • ♪ [music] ♪
  • - [Muskat] The phones are ringing like crazy in the press box. I'm on the phone with my
  • editors in New York and telling them...we're counting the Ks.
  • You're going through the record books trying to figure out,
  • "Is that a rookie record?" There was a major buzz in the press box.
  • - [Hughes] Two outs in the eighth inning, and here's Brad Ausmus.
  • - We realized that there was possible history in the making.
  • I knew that Roger Clemens was the only guy who had ever struck out 20.
  • And then you start doing the math.
  • - [Caray] You're figuring, "Wow, he's got a chance, if his pitch
  • count's okay, to really have an unbelievably high strikeout total."
  • - Wood has tied the team record for strikeouts in a game.
  • It's a 92-year-old record.
  • - [Mantegna] I remember, at that point, they kind of explained to me, "Hey,
  • we're getting close to the top Major League record for strikeouts."
  • And I'm like, "Whoa, hello."
  • - [Caray] Couldn't think of a more appropriate singing of the seventh inning stretch,
  • the "One, two, three strikes you're out."
  • - [Mantegna] This is fantastic. This is what everybody comes for,
  • to hopefully come to that special game, which this one's turning out to be.
  • - [Kaplan] There's only 15,000 people, max, in the ballpark. And I remember feeling
  • like we were all part of this group, this exclusive club.
  • - [Stone] They're being treated to one of the fine performances by a rookie pitcher that they
  • have ever seen.
  • - [Brian Garza] We noticed people coming to the ticketing windows that were still looking
  • to get a ticket once they had heard. You know, if they were listening on the
  • radio or if they were watching at one of the local establishments.
  • And the one that I remember specifically is a guy walked up with two kids.
  • And he lived in the neighborhood, and he said that he had pulled his kids
  • out of class. And he wanted them to see, you know, this potential
  • history-making performance.
  • - [Stone] He's threatening to strike out the side for the fourth time in the game.
  • - [Caray] What can you say? Eighteen strikeouts. It's a new Cub record.
  • - [Hughes] And that's one of the beauties of baseball. Sometimes a magical event will
  • come out of nowhere. And I would put Kerry Wood's epic
  • 20-strikeout game in that category of just coming right out of the blue.
  • - [Santo] Is this exciting or is this exciting?
  • - Oh my God.
  • ♪ [music] ♪
  • - [Caray] Kerry Wood awaiting the top of the ninth.
  • - [Williams] You're seeing games through the years that when a guy's pitching good,
  • he's the most lonely guy on the bench. Nobody go up there and talk to him because
  • everybody go up there and start talking, they feel that, you know,
  • they get him out of his rhythm.
  • - [Wood] You're really just trying to focus and do exactly what you did the last inning
  • in between innings, and try to drink the same amount of water and spit on the same
  • sunflower seed shell that's on the ground.
  • - [Stone] Kerry Wood sitting there contemplating what his ninth inning is going to look
  • like, and it will be a lot more comfortable for him if the Cubs
  • can push one across.
  • - [Caray] One and two. Hit towards third. He'll try to turn two. Howell took forever,
  • Well, the Cubs get a run.
  • - [Orie] Guys weren't talking about it, because it's almost kind of taboo
  • in baseball. You don't want to jinx somebody, go up and, "Hey." You know,
  • it's like golf. You're six under through five, and then suddenly you go out and
  • bogie in the next hole, and you want to strangle that guy.
  • - [Wood] People were leaving me alone. Even though I'd given up a hit already,
  • they still kind of thought something was different going on.
  • - [Stone] For a young man on the mound with everything going for him,
  • you can't wait to get out there. He wants this inning to end.
  • He feels with two runs he's got enough.
  • - [Wood] I think they kind of were struggling at the end of the game with the pitch count
  • and deciding what to do. I think there was conversations there
  • at the end of how I felt, and I didn't...I'm not sure I even
  • answered him.
  • - [Riggleman] With that dominating performance he was having, if I'd have taken him out,
  • I would probably need security to get out of the stadium, you know?
  • - [Caray] We go to the ninth inning. The man of the afternoon, Kerry Wood
  • has already set the Cubs' all-time record for single-game strikeouts with 18.
  • The National League record 19, the Major League record 20.
  • - [Wood] We'd talked before the game. We know, you know, who was going to come off the
  • bench later in the game. Obviously it was going to be dealing
  • with a lefty late in the game.
  • - [Caray] Spiers hitting .242, 0 for 6 as a pinch-hitter.
  • - [Wood] Didn't know much about him. Didn't know much about any of these guys.
  • Just tried to attack the strike zone the way I was all day.
  • - [Broadcaster] It's strike one on Spiers.
  • - [Deshaies] You feel a sense of pity for Spiers to have to come off the bench, right?
  • He'd been sitting there for a couple hours. And you can almost envision
  • a situation where, you know, anybody, all the bench guys are kind of looking
  • the other way so the manager doesn't, you know, call them to hit.
  • - [Caray] Got it. He ties the National League record.
  • - [Orie] It had so much English to it, it was weird. The swing was weird. I mean,
  • he went to it and then just... he just gave up.
  • - [Caray] That was a floating slider that came well inside to Spiers.
  • - [Wood] I've seen it on the replay. And, you know, Sandy's glove is behind him.
  • And you can actually see the glove and the ball when he finishes swinging,
  • and it just went straight sideways. It was like...I think that's the only one
  • I threw that day that went straight that way.
  • - [Hughes] And if you think about it, Kerry Wood struck out every single man
  • who appeared in the game for the Houston Astros. So he gets Spiers.
  • [Caray] Biggio comes up.
  • - And to the top of the order we go, and Craig Biggio.
  • - And you're thinking, of all the people who are going to
  • get a clean hit and ruin a chance for Kerry Wood to get to 21 strikeouts,
  • you figured it was going to be Craig Biggio.
  • - [Kaplan] He's choked up a little bit. He's got that nasty, dirty helmet on.
  • It's all scuffed up. I mean, this guy is a warrior.
  • - [Wood] I still just didn't want to walk anybody. You know, obviously I get
  • a runner on base, Bell pops one, we're a tied game. It's all for not.
  • - [Deshaies] I used to talk to him. He's like, "I hate making the last out of the game."
  • - [Caray] He goes for number 20 right here.
  • - [Deshaies] I'm sure being part of history to be, you know, the 20th punch-out was not
  • something he would want to be a part of.
  • - [Caray] To the shortstop. Two down. And the fans boo Craig Biggio
  • for making contact.
  • - Sure enough, he swung at the pitch, made an out, and the crowd booed him.
  • [Kaplan] But I remember him, as he ran by Kerry Wood, he just looked at him
  • with a smile, like it was a victory for a Hall of Fame hitter to ground out.
  • - [Erickson] We knew that 21 was possible. When it was no longer possible, yeah,
  • there's a little bit of disappointment. You've come that far.
  • - [Caray] He's got a chance to tie Clemens, though, if he can retire Bell.
  • - [Erickson] Not nearly as disappointing as it would have been if he would have been stuck
  • on 19, though.
  • - [Broadcaster] Derek Bell struck out in the first inning. He's made contact twice
  • since then. Fly ball to right field and a foul pop. Ball one.
  • - [Riggleman] You know, I really was anxious for it to happen. You know, we were going to be
  • a little concerned if Bell scratched out an at-bat with 10 or 12 pitches and then,
  • you know, got on base.
  • - [Caray] One and 0 to Bell.
  • - Nasty. - One and one.
  • - [Orie] Bell was...he was beaten. You know, he was already done at that point,
  • because you could see his lower half was out, removed, and kind of, like,
  • that effortless swing.
  • - [Deshaies] I think there was an air of, "Let's get this over with."
  • - [Gutierrez] Everybody knew how many he had, so we were just trying to be, like,
  • "Let's not be this one," or "Let's not be this number or
  • that number." But you know, there was nothing we can do.
  • - [Deshaies] Guys are just, kind of, beat up a little bit mentally from being
  • dominated all afternoon. It's probably one of those things where
  • you're like, "I wish this thing had ended before I got one more turn."
  • - [Caray] One and two.
  • - [Hughes] Everyone is standing. So, it's dramatic. And I'm working with Ron Santo,
  • and I said something like, "Ronnie, it's only May, but it feels like it's
  • a World Series game." It really did. It had that kind of drama.
  • And Ron came up with a great line. He said...
  • - [Santo] And if this kid keeps pitching like this, we may be in a World Series.
  • - [Wood] You've got two outs, it's just, you know, empty the tank right here
  • on this hitter. So I emptied it.
  • - [Caray] The greatest ammunition a TV broadcaster has during a broadcast is the picture.
  • Fans can see what's going on, and the fans who have been watching
  • the game know that he's sitting on 19 strikeouts and has a one-hit
  • shutout working. What they can't see, perhaps, is what the catcher's call is
  • going to be. You figured with Derek Bell up there, a right-handed hitter,
  • it was going to be a breaking ball of some sort, which Stone, I think,
  • had set up before.
  • - [Stone] One more curveball, and that should be about it.
  • - [Wood] Yeah, I don't know how I knew I was going to throw. He must have knew my sign.
  • He called it before I threw it.
  • - [Caray] So, Sandy Martinez gets in that low crouch, puts the two down,
  • and I just said, "Here comes the hook."
  • - Here comes the hook. Got him, 20 strikeouts.
  • He ties the Major League record. Unbelievable.
  • - [Wood] And that last pitch was just, I gripped my slider, slurve,
  • or whatever we were calling it at the time, and just threw it as hard as I could
  • that way and spun it. And that was probably the best one of the day.
  • - [Gutierrez] And to this day, I laugh at it when I see it because it was like a wiffleball.
  • I mean, it was just, the way he let go of that ball
  • and how it broke, it's just funny now.
  • - [Broadcaster] Twenty-year-old Kerry Wood gets Derek Bell for his 20th strikeout,
  • a National League record.
  • - [Wood] The next series, I think, in Houston, I think Derek Bell came over.
  • We were laying around stretching, and he says, he's like, "Hey, man,
  • I just want you to know, I swung at that on purpose for you."
  • You know, the last pitch kind of thing. And I was like, "I know you did.
  • I know you did."
  • - [Mantegna] Here I am sitting next...with Pat Hughes, Ron Santo,
  • Ron Santo who I idolized. And he was just so excited and
  • so thrilled. Hey, I'm an Italian guy from Chicago, too. We're related.
  • We were like, "Yeah."
  • - [Hughes] Yeah, and a miss. Strike three, 20 strikeouts for Kerry Wood.
  • - [Kaplan] I'm in the back row of our booth, and Mantegna throws his arms around me.
  • And we're both pumping our fists, we're hugging, and I just couldn't stop.
  • And if you listen to the tape today, I remember going, "Woo."
  • - Woo, unbelievable.
  • - That is, you know, 20 years ago. That's a 37-year-old David Kaplan
  • acting like a lunatic, but I wouldn't trade that moment for anything.
  • - [Mantegna] In all the games throughout my lifetime, for me to be in that time and place,
  • I got lucky with that one.
  • - [Muskat] The best part of the game, to me, was at the end, you know,
  • everybody sees him do that fist pump. I've had people ask me, well,
  • wasn't he counting the strikeouts? Well, no, he wasn't counting the strikeouts.
  • The reason he did that was because he didn't walk a batter.
  • - [Wood] I'd been told about it all through my career in the minor leagues,
  • and I had struggled with it in the beginning of my career in the first
  • few starts. And for me, it was my first complete game ever
  • and the first time I'd ever not walked anybody. So, the fist pump for me
  • was for complete game and no walks.
  • - [Riggleman] If he would have been jumping around and stuff, that just would have been so
  • uncharacteristic of Kerry. I think that that little bit of emotion
  • he showed there was typical of the class act that he was.
  • - [Caray] I don't know if Kerry Wood knew what he did at the time that he did it.
  • I know that he knew he won the game, but I don't really know in my heart
  • of hearts in that instant if he realized he had struck out 20 guys.
  • - [Hughes] He is being mobbed by his teammates right near the mound at Wrigley Field.
  • - [Wood] I didn't really know what was going on. I mean, we just won a game two to nothing
  • in May. I didn't know why everybody was out there.
  • - I think Sandy gave me the ball, and then...and Grace grabbed me
  • by the neck.
  • - [Adams] I think when he did it, we all rushed the field like we'd just
  • won the World Series. We were just so happy for him.
  • - [Orie] He just looks young. You see him baby face in there. For him,
  • it's just a swirl of emotions trying to encapsulate all of that.
  • - [Wood] And the next thing I know, I was in front of the camera shaking
  • like a leaf trying to do a post-game interview.
  • - [Caray] Kerry, congratulations. What a ball game today.
  • - [Wood] Thank you very much.
  • - [Caray] Whatever nerves he had between the white lines, they weren't there until
  • that microphone got shoved in his hand and that earpiece went on.
  • - [Wood] Now I'm live on TV and doing something that I hated to do, which was talk
  • to cameras and talk to the media. I think it was Chip that actually said,
  • "Well, it was 20, and you just broke the record."
  • - [Caray] Did you know how many men you had struck out and that you were chasing
  • the Major League record that you tied today?
  • - [Wood] No, I couldn't even tell you how many I had.
  • - [Caray] Well, you had 20. Did they give you the baseball at least?
  • - [Wood] No, not yet.
  • - [Caray] Make sure you get that, young man, because that's one for the mantelpiece.
  • - All right.
  • - [Wood] Still, at the time, it didn't register. I mean, I was still just trying to get
  • the interview over with. And I was like, "Oh, that's great," kind of thing.
  • And then when I went through, somebody, one of the photographers from a baseball
  • card company, I don't know who it was, like, pulled me in a tunnel and had
  • already written "21" on a ball. And I just...this guy just...and they'd
  • just told me, Chip had just told me it was 20. So I was like, "Hey, man, it's not 21.
  • I'm not holding this up." Because he wanted to take a picture and do
  • a baseball card, and it said 21, and I was like, "It's not 21, it was 20."
  • So he took the one and tried to make it like a round...so it looks like I had "2D"
  • strikeouts on the baseball card, actually, is what it looks like. And then,
  • obviously, I get into my locker and get into the clubhouse, and we celebrate.
  • And then the media comes in and it's, you know, my life has changed.
  • - [Reporter] Did the idea of equaling something that Roger Clemens has done to set a record,
  • is that sunk in yet?
  • - [Wood] No, but it will later on. I won't be able to sleep tonight.
  • I'll be...you know, that's just the greatest honor that I could ever ask
  • for right there.
  • - I was doing all the media stuff, and someone worked their way
  • through and said, "Hey, you've got a phone call in the
  • trainer's room." And I was like, "I've been here for a month.
  • Who's calling me? I don't even know the number. Like, who's calling me in the
  • trainer's room?" And I just picked up the phone. I was like, "Hello." And he's like,
  • "Hey, Kerry, it's Rocket." And I was, like, blank. I was not expecting anything.
  • I was like...and so I had to ask, like, "Who?" And he's like, "The Rocket."
  • And I still had nothing. I was like, "Who?" And, you know, he said,
  • "Roger Clemens." And I was like, "Oh. Hey, Rocket. Hey, what's going on?"
  • So I was just caught off guard. And then, obviously, he was welcoming me to the club
  • and saying, "Congratulations. Saw the end of the game.
  • You looked amazing." So, I mean, that was a pretty special moment for me
  • as a rookie, as a young player.
  • - [Caray] I remembered, "Wow, he really is 20." And I think we all forget that.
  • This is a 20-year-old kid who just went to the mound at baseball's most historic
  • ballpark and did something that had never been done before there. I'm thinking,
  • this kid's life has changed forever because of this one performance.
  • - [Wood] Off the field stuff was...we got crazy. I didn't see the opportunity. I was just,
  • like, "Make it go away. I just want to...I've got to pitch
  • in two days." Like, "I just want to go back to being a kid trying to make it
  • in the game." I think the expectations changed as well with that,
  • after that fifth start.
  • - [Deshaies] You've got a guy who I think scouts felt like, "Here's a guy who's got a chance
  • to be an all-time great." And then he has this game at such
  • a tender age, so early in his career, and that's not just scouts now,
  • it's the whole baseball world. And all the fans and casual fans are like,
  • "Wow," you know, "sky's the limit."
  • - [Caray] And that became kind of a benchmark game for Kerry, and that people around
  • the country would come watch him pitch and were almost disappointed if all he did was
  • strike out 10 and win the game 7 to 2.
  • - [Adams] When you strike out 20, I'm sure everybody thinks you're going
  • to go out there and strike out 20 again, and strike out 20 again.
  • - [Wood] Even for me, I mean, I expected to go out and do it. You know,
  • I think I struck out 13 at the next start and, you know, felt disappointed that I
  • didn't get more, went seven innings. So, it set the bar for me.
  • It kind of elevated it for myself, but I think also, I mean,
  • for fans and everybody else in the media, it became, you know,
  • every time, "He's going to... Kept throwing out, every time he pitches,
  • he could throw a no-hitter. He could do something special.
  • It's going to be this. He's going to win 20.
  • He's going to be the next Doc Gooden. He's going to be the next Roger Clemens."
  • That stuff changed.
  • - [Kaplan] Ron Santo says, "That kid keeps pitching that way, we may be in a World Series."
  • And that's what everyone expected. "Kerry Wood is going to deliver us
  • the Holy Grail that we've all dreamed about for so long."
  • And it made it really tough on him.
  • - [Wood] You see your career being, "You're supposed to do this," when,
  • you know, two days ago I was just trying to make it in this...I didn't know if I
  • belonged or not yet.
  • - [Muskat] Unfortunately, he had the elbow issues.
  • - [Wood] And it really was the fist pump after it that I first felt it.
  • But I pitched the rest of the season, you know, and got to the end
  • of the season. Like, missed the last month,
  • so it wasn't like it was an injury that happened right then.
  • You feel things in different times. That particular day, it was on the last one.
  • - [Muskat] I think he was on the DL 16 times in his career, which is not something anyone
  • wants to be known for.
  • - [Deshaies] You saw a kid with all this talent, and in the end, he had a very nice career.
  • But without the injuries, we always have that "What if."
  • - [Hughes] Kerry Wood was meant to pitch that one magical 20-strikeout game.
  • He had a lot of great games thereafter, but unfortunately for Kerry,
  • he never quite was able to match that historic performance,
  • which is not really that surprising because it was such an unusual game.
  • - This is the last big league game he will ever pitch in in his career.
  • - [Len Kasper] Talking to Pat Hughes before the game, he said this was the most dominating game
  • he's ever seen, 20 strikeouts in his rookie year against the Astros.
  • Swing and a miss, he's struck him out.
  • - [Broadcaster] His teammates are congratulating him, and he will leave with the memory of
  • the last guy he faced, he struck out swinging.
  • - [Hughes] Kerry Wood has just walked off for the final time in his big league career.
  • - [Kasper] Wow, what a moment. His son Justin giving him a big hug.
  • - [Wood] I think he ran out there, right here. Right about here, he realized there was
  • 40,000 people out there and he would not let go of my leg.
  • That was a good day, though. Justin came. I took him to the field with me that day.
  • Remember that? Went up in the scoreboard. - [Justin] Yeah.
  • - [Man] We were talking his 20-strikeout game. Have you seen highlights of it?
  • What do you... - Yeah.
  • - [Justin] Yeah, I've seen it. It's pretty cool.
  • - [Wood] I show him every day before school, over breakfast.
  • - [Mantegna] He fulfilled a lot of people's dreams, just even in that moment, what he did.
  • He is certainly one of the heroic aspects of Cubdom.
  • - [Wood] I've had people come and say, "That game single-handedly made me
  • a baseball fan, made me a Cubs fan." You know, 20 years later,
  • to still have people say that that was, like, one of their best baseball memories
  • is pretty cool.
  • - [Mantegna] Ernie Banks was my guy, you know, growing up. That's the guy that
  • I idolized. But I'm sure for a lot of younger people, you know,
  • Kerry Wood is that guy. You know, you mention Chicago Cubs and say,
  • "Who is your favorite player of all time?" And it's going to be...there's going to be
  • a contingent that are going to say, "Kerry Wood."
  • - [Bujnowski] Well, I don't think I'll ever care about any player as much as I care
  • about Kerry Wood. After my dad passed away, Brad Hofvander,
  • one of my dad's friends, brought a couple of the miniature-sized Ks
  • to an autograph signing with Kerry.
  • - [Hofvander] He was like, "I carried a sign," and Kerry knew exactly what it was.
  • - [Wood] Super passionate, is what I remember about Tom. Very passionate about the Cubs,
  • very passionate about the K signs and the thing that happened,
  • the way it just became a part of history when it...he was just a fan.
  • He had more confidence in me, I think, at the time when I first came in than I
  • probably did. They really believe in what you're doing, and they think you're going
  • to come out of your slump or you're going to be the next greatest thing.
  • We feed off of all of that stuff. To be able to give a family or
  • a person...a family, you know, memories like that, and to be able to be
  • a part of that and give them some great lasting memories, it's humbling.
  • - [Bujnowski] It was closure in a way, you know? Knowing that my dad wasn't doing all
  • of this, you know, as a crazy Cubs fan for nothing. Knowing that Kerry recognized
  • the effort. It's a cool reminder to have of all the history that's wrapped
  • into that K.
  • ♪ [music] ♪
  • - [Wood] I didn't collect a whole lot of stuff over the years, but this is all of...
  • the majority of the balls I have. So he said "Ties the record with 20
  • strikeouts," and "Win number 3." And then put the zeroes up, and that's it.
  • Biggio signed this for me. Sent a bat over. "To Kerry, May 6th, 1998,
  • the single most dominant game I've ever been a part of. Best wishes,
  • Craig Biggio." Pretty cool.
  • - [Orie] This is the most dominant performance stuff-wise all across the board that...
  • I put that up against any performance. I don't know how you can do better
  • than that. His stuff was that good.
  • - [Adams] When I watch the highlights, I still get chills and get emotional,
  • because it was just unbelievable.
  • - [Caray] I have never, ever seen a pitcher with the kind of command that Kerry Wood had.
  • It was the single most dominant pitching performance I have ever seen.
  • - [Kaplan] That one day, you take that as a snapshot of Kerry Wood's career,
  • is the single greatest pitching performance I have ever seen.
  • - [Meals] That's a record for Major League Baseball. And you think of how many games
  • have been played in Major League Baseball, and it's been done five times,
  • 20 strikeouts, which is quite an accomplishment.
  • - [Deshaies] Twenty punch-outs, no walks, over a good team? I challenge somebody
  • to find me a better one.
  • - [Muskat] The Kerry Wood game is my favorite game of all time. You have this
  • 20-year-old kid, you have no idea what he's going to do, and boom.
  • He goes out there and strikes out 20 players. It's a perfect example of how
  • great baseball is.
  • - [Hughes] It's been almost 20 years ago. it's as vivid as something that happened
  • last week.
  • ♪ [music] ♪

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Description

Through the memories of those who were there, relive the day that a 20-year-old Kerry Wood threw his historic 20 strikeout game. Kid K's 20 strikeouts, 20 years later. Which strikeout was your favorite?

"It was the single most dominant pitching performance I have ever seen." -Chip Caray

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