10 cool facts about Arrieta's Wild Card shutout

10 cool facts about Arrieta's Wild Card shutout

Jake Arrieta continued his historically dominant run on Wednesday night, spinning a shutout in the Cubs' winner-take-all game against the Pirates.

The National League Cy Young Award candidate was in top form in the NL Wild Card Game presented by Budweiser, not just stifling Bucs hitters in the Cubs' 4-0 victory, but making more history in the process. As if Arrieta's performance on the mound wasn't enough, he also contributed both at the plate and on the basepaths. With the win, the Cubs advanced to face the Cardinals in the NL Division Series, which begins on Friday at 6:30 p.m. ET on TBS.

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Date Result
Oct. 7 CHC 4, PIT 0

Arrieta also received more than enough offensive support from his teammates, while the Cubs continued a Wild Card Game trend of road teams emerging victorious. Here's a look at 10 of the top facts and figures to come out of Wednesday's game.

• Arrieta became the first pitcher to fire a postseason shutout while striking out at least 10 batters and walking zero. The previous high for strikeouts in a no-walk shutout was nine, set by Cole Hamels in Game 3 of the 2010 NL Division Series.

• The 11 strikeouts also match the Cubs' franchise record, originally set by Kerry Wood in Game 1 of the 2003 NLDS against the Braves. Wood tallied 11 strikeouts, while holding Atlanta to two runs off two hits and five walks over 7 1/3 innings in a 4-2 victory. It's only the third time in Cubs postseason history that a pitcher has tallied double-digit strikeouts, with the other such effort coming courtesy of a 10-strikeout performance by Orval Overall in Game 5 of the 1908 World Series.

Arrieta escapes a jam

• This marked the second straight year that the Pirates were shut out in the NL Wild Card Game, as they were blanked 8-0 by Madison Bumgarner and the Giants at PNC Park last season. The back-to-back shutouts mark the 18th time a team has been shut out in consecutive postseason games -- and the first since the Tigers were held scoreless in Games 2 and 3 of the 2012 World Series. Only two teams -- the 1905 Athletics and '66 Dodgers -- have been shut out in three straight postseason games.

• Along with tossing another gem on the mound, Arrieta became just the 10th pitcher to be hit by a pitch in a postseason game. Though it's a rare occurrence, it's now happened twice in as many postseasons, as Cardinals starter John Lackey was also plunked by a pitch in Game 3 of the 2014 NL Championship Series. Prior to Lackey, a pitcher hadn't been hit by a pitch in the postseason since Hall of Famer Steve Carlton was hit by Tommy John in the 1977 NLCS.

• After being hit, Arrieta then promptly swiped second base to become just the fifth pitcher -- and the first since Cliff Lee in 2009 -- to steal a base in postseason play. Along with Arrieta and Lee, the others to do so are John Smoltz (one each in 1991, '92 and '95), Billy Loes ('52) and Bill Donovan ('08).

Arrieta swipes second

Dexter Fowler became just the seventh player -- and only the second NL player -- to both homer and steal a base in a winner-take-all postseason game. The others to do so are Curtis Granderson (2012 American League DS), Daniel Descalso ('12 NLDS), Dustin Pedroia ('08 ALCS), Johnny Damon ('04 ALCS), Ray Durham ('02 ALDS) and Chris Chambliss (1976 ALCS). Fowler is the first Cubs player to accomplish the feat.

• Fowler was also the first leadoff hitter to collect at least three hits and a home run in a winner-take-all postseason game since Pedroia in Game 7 of the 2007 ALCS. Pedroia went 3-for-5 with a homer and five RBIs to help the Red Sox eliminate the Indians with an 11-2 victory.

• At the other end of the spectrum, Bucs first baseman Pedro Alvarez went 0-for-3 with three strikeouts after entering the game as a pinch-hitter in the bottom of the third inning. By striking out three times off the bench, Alvarez joined Richie Hebner (1971 NLCS) and Eric Bruntlett (2005 NLDS) as the only players to strike out at least three times in a postseason game they did not start.

• The Cubs' victory snapped a nine-game postseason losing streak for the club, tied for the sixth-longest postseason streak all-time. Their last postseason win had come in Game 4 of the 2003 NLCS against the Marlins. Chicago had been outscored 57-21 in its nine postseason contests since.

• Arrieta finished the night with a game score of 90, the highest in a winner-take-all postseason game. The previous high was 89, set by Tigers starter Justin Verlander in his four-hit, 11-strikeout shutout against the A's in Game 5 of the 2012 ALDS.

Paul Casella is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.