By Ashley Dunkak
With seven strikeouts Tuesday from Detroit Tigers starter Doug Fister, one from Drew Smyly and three each from Bruce Rondon and Joaquin Benoit, the Tigers set a new American League record for strikeouts in a season: 1,384.
With that number – and still four games remaining in the regular season – Detroit has a significant lead over all other teams this year. Cleveland is the only other club with at least 1,300, as the Indians have rung up 1,315. Boston is an even more distant third with 1,267 strikeouts recorded.
Three Tigers pitchers sit in the top 15 in the major leagues in strikeouts. Max Scherzer, he of recent 20-win fame, has 230. Struggling ace Justin Verlander has recorded 207. Anibal Sanchez, who missed several starts to injury, has 194.
The record the Tigers just broke only stood for one season; Tampa Bay struck out 1,383 in 2012. If Detroit can approach or break the MLB record, though, its staff might carve out a more significant legacy. The Chicago Cubs set the current record of 1,404 in 2003. The Tigers trail that mark by 20 strikeouts going into the last game of their second-to-last series.