MIAMI -- If a 300-game winner is starting a World Series game, it must be time for yet another edition of the World Series Useless Information Department:
With his 310 career wins, Roger Clemens came into Game 4 with nine more than all the Marlins who had pitched in this World Series combined (301). Only one Marlin is even within 250 wins of Clemens -- Rick Helling (90).
Clemens became the sixth pitcher to appear in a World Series game after winning his 300th game -- and the first since Steve Carlton in 1983. Most career wins by pitchers at the time they pitched in a World Series game, courtesy of the Elias Sports Bureau:
Walter Johnson, 1925 -- 397
Cy Young, 1903 -- 379
Grover Cleveland Alexander, 1928 -- 364
Christy Mathewson, 1913 -- 337
Clemens, 2003 -- 310
Carlton, 1983 -- 300
Last 300-game winner to win a World Series game: Grover Cleveland Alexander, in Game 6 of the 1929 World Series.
Clemens (41 years, 2 months, 18 days) is almost older than the two youngest Marlins -- Miguel Cabrera (20 years, 6 months, 2 days) and Dontrelle Willis (21 years, 9 months, 10 days) --- combined. They beat him by approximately one year and three weeks. Clemens was drafted by the Red Sox about six weeks after Cabrera was born.
But when Cabrera homered off Clemens in the first inning, they combined for one of our favorite World Series records ever -- biggest age differential between a player who hit a home run and the pitcher who gave it up. Clemens is 20 years and 257 days older than Cabrera -- blowing away the previous record, according to Elias. The old record was 16 years, 236 days between Mickey Mantle and Preacher Roe (1953 World Series).
Then turned around and got a hit himself, of course. He was only the second pitcher in his 40s ever to get a hit in a World Series. The other was Dolf Luque, of the 1933 Giants. And it had been 20 years since a player as old as Clemens got a World Series hit. Tony Perez and Pete Rose both got hits at age 41-plus in the 1983 Series.
Clemens' start Wednesday, coming four days after David Wells started Game 1, made the Yankees the third team ever to use two 40-year-old pitchers in a World Series. The others, according to Elias: the 1947 Yankees (Spud Chandler, Bobo Newsom) and 1934 Cardinals (Jesse Haines, Dazzy Vance).
How long ago was Clemens' first postseason start, in Game 1 of the 1986 ALCS? Aaron Boone's father, Bob, started in it (and got two hits off Clemens). Other players in the Angels/Red Sox lineups that day: Reggie Jackson, Don Baylor, Dick Schofield, Doug DeCinces, Tony Armas and the immortal Rob Wilfong.
No 300-game winner before Clemens has ever made the final appearance of his career in a World Series game. In fact, according to Elias, only one Hall of Famer ever threw his final pitch in a World Series game. That was Sandy Koufax, who lost Game 2 of the 1966 World Series to Jim Palmer, 6-0.
But coincidentally, as the Detroit Free Press' John Lowe reports, Palmer's last career win also came in a World Series -- in relief in 1983. He pitched briefly the next season and was winless in five appearances.
Meanwhile, Lowe also reports that two other 300-game winners finished their careers with teams that went to the World Series -- Tom Seaver (1986 Red Sox) and Don Sutton ('88 Dodgers). But neither pitched in the Series.
Finally, here are the opposing pitchers in Clemens' six previous World Series starts:
More Useless Info
Does anyone else find it as amazing as we do that the Marlins are the 12th different team the Yankees have played in the World Series? They've played four clubs from each of the three NL divisions -- missing only the Expos, Astros, Brewers and Rockies.
Here are the teams they have played:
NL EAST -- Phillies, Braves, Mets, Marlins
NL CENTRAL -- Cubs, Reds, Cardinals, Pirates
NL WEST -- Dodgers, Giants, Diamondbacks, Padres
Which franchises besides the Yankees have played the most different opponents in a World Series? Here are the five who have played seven or more: Cardinals 10, A's 9, Red Sox 8, Giants 7, Dodgers 7.
Amazingly, the Yankees have now played 22 of the other 29 teams in baseball in at least one postseason series. They played the Brewers in the 1981 Division Series, back when Milwaukee was still in the American League. So the only clubs the Yankees have missed, aside from the Expos, Astros and Rockies, are the Devil Rays, Blue Jays, Tigers and White Sox.
If it weren't for Derek Jeter's three hits, Josh Beckett would have thrown a no-hitter in the 7 1/3 innings he was out there in Game 3. So how often do you see a pitcher give up three or more hits in a World Series game -- all to the same hitter? Almost never. According to Elias, that has happened in only two other World Series games ever played.
Game 5, 1923 -- Bob (Irish) Meusel off Joe Bush -- 3 hits
Game 2, 1988 -- Dave Parker off Orel Hershiser -- 3 hits
Speaking of Jeter, he made five outs in his first three trips to the plate Wednesday (ground-out and two double-play balls). But if it makes him feel better, he was still one short of the record for grounding into DPs in a World Series game. And Willie Mays was the guy who set it, in Game 4, 1951.
Luis Castillo's three-strikeout game Tuesday might not have looked particularly historic. But Castillo hadn't whiffed three times in any game this season OR last season. Last time he did it: June 21, 2001 (an 0-for-4, 4-punchout game against the Braves). That was 381 games ago, counting this postseason.
Miguel Cabrera keeps on making history. According to the Sultan of Swat Stats, SABR's David Vincent, his homer off Clemens made him the second-youngest player ever to homer in a World Series game. The top five:
Andruw Jones 19 years,.180 days, Oct. 20, 1996 (2 homers)
Miguel Cabrera 20 years, 187 days, Oct. 22, 2003
Mickey Mantle 20 years, 351 days, Oct. 6, 1952
Mickey Mantle 20 years, 352 days, Oct. 7, 1952
Tony Kubek 20 years, 358 days, Oct. 5, 1957 (2 homers)
And when Cabrera drove in the Marlins' first run in Game 3, he became the fourth-youngest player ever to drive in a run in a World Series, The three who were younger, according to Elias:
Freddie Lindstrom, 1924 Giants, 18 years, 320 days
Andruw Jones, 1996 Braves, 19 years,181 days
Willie Mays, 1951 Giants, 20 years,153 days
Josh Beckett struck out 10 Yankees in Game 2, nine days after whiffing 11 Cubs in his Game 5 NLCS start. That made him only the fifth pitcher to strike out 10 or more in back-to-back postseason starts. The others, courtesy of Elias:
Bob Gibson (3 in row) 10 in 1967 WS Game 7, 11 in 1968 WS Game 1, 10 in 1968 WS Game 4.
Sandy Koufax 10 in 1965 WS Game 5, 10 in 1965 WS Game 7.
Mike Mussina 15 in 1997 ALCS Game 3, 10 in 1997 ALCS Game 6.
John Smoltz 10 in 1996 WS Game 5, 11 in 1997 NLDS Game 3.
Jorge Posada's bases-loaded walk in Game 3 was one of the big plays of the night Tuesday. ESPN research guru Jeff Bennett reports that Posada drew five bases-loaded walks during the season, second only to John Olerud in the majors.
What's Aaron Boone's place in World Series trivia? He made the all-star team in the National League, but he's playing in the World Series for the American League entry. Only three other players have ever done that, according to David Vincent. The others:
Johnny Mize 1949, made ASG as a Giant, played in WS for Yankees
David Cone 1992, made ASG as a Met, played in WS for Blue Jays
Mike Bordick 2000, made ASG as an Oriole, played in WS for Mets
Since Pro Player Stadium pays homage to more football players than baseball players, it's fitting to note that Dan Marino was once taken in the baseball draft. As the East Valley (Ariz.) Tribune's Ed Price reports, Marino was the Royals' fourth-round pick in the 1979 draft -- two rounds ahead of Harold Reynolds, 15 rounds ahead of Don Mattingly. By the way, the Royals also drafted John Elway that year (19th round).
Baseball America draft historian Jim Callis reports that two other famous Dolphins in history also were once taken in the baseball draft. Fulton Walker, who returned a kickoff 98 yards for a touchdown in Super Bowl XVII, was a 25th-round pick by the Pirates in 1977. And Terrell Buckley, who led the Dolphins in interceptions in three straight seasons (1996-97-98), was a 38th-round pick by the Braves in 1992.
Finally, as ESPN Radio's Todd Wright observes , the Yankees not only dominate the baseball postseason, they could also qualify for the NFL postseason. Their win in Game 3 made the Joe Torre Yankees 8-1 in World Series games in stadiums that were once or currently used for football:
Atlanta Fulton County Stadium 3-0
Qualcomm Stadium (San Diego) 2-0
Shea Stadium (NYC) 2-1
Pro Player Stadium 1-0
Jayson Stark is a senior writer at ESPN.com