Kentucky's Webb chasing history

What’s the greatest sports record held by a Kentuckian?

That’s not a rhetorical question. I’m really asking. Mary T. Meagher’s records in the butterfly? Muhammad Ali reclaiming his heavyweight title three times? I’m sure there are many candidates.

We may be getting closer to another one.

Former University of Kentucky star pitcher Brandon Webb is the best pitcher in the National League, and it’s not even close. But now, he’s shooting for a mark that could put him among the best names in history.

The Arizona Diamondbacks pitcher and reigning NL Cy Young Award winner will take the mound tonight against the Atlanta Braves with a streak of 33 scoreless innings — the longest in major league baseball this year. He’s thrown two straight complete game shutouts, and another would put him within conversation distance of Orel Hershiser’s record of 59 straight.

That’s still a long way off. As Webb surmised, “that’s Cal Ripken territory.”

But Webb has been as sharp in his last two starts as any pitcher I’ve seen in some time. Like Hershiser, he has a wicked sinker, and it has been particularly nasty lately.

The low-key Webb hasn’t gotten much attention for his streak yet, as this Arizona Republic story notes. But one more shutout performance will get the baseball world perked up.

As for the greatest records held by Kentuckians, let ’em rip. You can post them to the comments section of this blog, or email me at ecrawford@courier-journal.com .

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3 thoughts on “Kentucky's Webb chasing history

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