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Kernels: The agony and ecstasy of the week in MLB

AP Photo/Morry Gash

With apologies to Chris Heston, who has probably heard every possible reference to a variety of Charlton Heston movies over the course of his career, the headline above seemed to fit our weekly look at baseball's interesting and unusual.

Heston, of course, threw the season's first no-hitter on Tuesday, which got its own collection of analysis and factoids in this post (and one more bonus Kernel coming up).

• While Heston was dealing his no-hitter, Chris Young threw six hitless innings before Trevor Plouffe tripled off the right-field wall. That would be the team's only hit, marking the first time the "Minnesota Twins" have had every hit of a game be a triple. The franchise last did it at Griffith Stadium on April 20, 1951. Mickey Vernon and Sam Mele tripled against the Yankees (for whom Mickey Mantle tripled in the same game). The Senators received 13 walks and won 5-3.

Max Scherzer one-hit the Brewers on Sunday (just the second complete game of his career), and joined Michael Pineda and Corey Kluber in this season's 16-strikeout club. The most recent season in which three different pitchers had a 16-K game was 1998 (Randy Johnson, Roger Clemens, Kerry Wood). Bill Gullickson, who fanned 18 Cubs in 1980, holds the team strikeout record, but he gave up two runs. Thus Scherzer's is the first 16-K shutout in franchise history, and the first in the majors since Brandon Morrow's near-no-hitter in 2010. Morrow fanned 17 and Evan Longoria's infield single with two outs in the ninth kept him from a place in history.

• The Twins gave us more interesting hits on Saturday. They had nine total, but seven were doubles and all of those were by different players. And they lost. Minnesota hadn't recorded seven doubles as a team since July 2010, and the last time they had seven different players hit them was July 1998, in a 17-hit, 11-6 victory over Cleveland. However, with thanks to our friends at the Elias Sports Bureau, the Twins/Senators franchise had never before had seven different batters double in a loss.

• On Sunday it was back to triples as the Twins legged out four of them. They're just the third team in the last 10 seasons with a quartet of three-baggers; the Dodgers did it last July and the White Sox did it in a 14-inning affair in 2011. Minnesota's most recent game with four triples was more than a half-century ago: On June 2, 1964, four-fifths of their infield-- 1B Don Mincher, 2B Bernie Allen, 3B Johnny Goryl and catcher Earl Battey-- tripled in a 6-2 win over the Yankees.

• 1-0 games are always a tense way to win and a tough way to lose. The Orioles won one on Tuesday via wild pitch, the second such game in the majors this year, but the first for the Orioles since Sept. 2, 1973, when the Yankees' Lindy McDaniel wild-pitched Marv Rettenmund to both third and home in the eighth inning.

• The Angels made Albert Pujols' 538th homer hold up for a 1-0 win on Saturday. The only other time in franchise history that the Angels won a 1-0 game via first-inning homer was Aug. 31, 1965, at Dodger Stadium (the "Big A" didn't open until '66). Albie Pearson homered and Dean Chance threw a six-hitter against the Yankees.

• The two Pennsylvania teams played 12 scoreless innings on Friday before Starling Marte's RBI single in the bottom of the 13th. The Pirates had not won a 1-0 game of that length since July 28, 1976, when Richie Hebner homered in the top of the 13th at Shea Stadium. Their most recent 1-0 home win in 13 or more came on Aug. 29, 1914, against Brooklyn. Third baseman Alex McCarthy had the walk-off single to score Honus Wagner.

• Naturally the teams played 10 more scoreless innings on Sunday before Josh Harrison's game-winner. The last season when the Pirates won two extra-inning walk-offs by a 1-0 score was 1965. The Phillies hadn't lost two such games in a season since 1998, but the last time they lost two against the same opponent was 1958 … to the Pirates, on Friday and Sunday (May 9 and 11), to bookend a series.

• The Diamondbacks collected 11 hits on Friday, but 10 were singles and they managed to score only one run. They still won (another 1-0), helped by Chase Anderson not allowing a hit until the seventh. It was just the second time in franchise history that Arizona had an 11-hit game in which they scored only once (here's the other). The last visiting team to record 11 hits and only one run in a game in San Francisco, and still win, was the 1981 Reds.

• The 2015 Reds watched Anthony DeSclafani give up 10 hits on Tuesday and still win. He was the first Reds pitcher to do that … since Mike Leake did it on Monday. The most recent time the Reds had consecutive starting pitchers give up 10 hits and win was Aug. 30-31, 1969, against the Cardinals. Gary Nolan threw a complete-game 10-hitter; Jim Merritt gave up five runs in six innings the next day, but after the offense staked him to a big lead.

Bonus no-hitter factoid: A friend of Kernels noticed-- before Heston's no-hitter-- that Tuesday's date was 6/9/15. And that 6+9=15. There are no more than 12 such days in any year (a max of seven are during baseball season), and they can only happen in the years from '02 to '43. So it turns out that Heston's was the fourth no-hitter ever thrown on a date when "MM+DD=YY." The others (all from the 20th century) were by Jesse Haines of the Cardinals (7/17/24), Ray Caldwell of the Indians (9/10/19), and Johnny Lush of the Phillies (5/1/06).

More fun stuff from June 8 through June 14:

Houston Astros: 13-0 shutout on Sunday matches largest at home in team history (beat Braves 13-0 at Astrodome on May 20, 1978).

Christian Bethancourt: Called for catcher's interference with bases loaded Thursday. Last bases-loaded CI committed by Braves was in September 1985 with Pete Rose at the plate and Larry Owen behind it.

• A.J. Burnett: Nine scoreless innings on Sunday but no decision because the game was scoreless. Last to do that for Pirates was Francisco Cordova in 1997.

David Price: First individual shutout with zero walks and at least eight strikeouts for Tigers since rookie Jeff Robinson defeated the Yankees on Aug. 7, 1987.

George Springer: Five of Astros' seven total hits on Wednesday, first player since 1900 (according to Elias Sports Bureau research) to have five or more hits while the rest of his team had two or fewer.

John Lackey: First Cardinals pitcher to give up 12 hits and 10 runs, but not walk anyone, since Eddie Dyer did it in relief on May 30, 1925.

Roberto Hernandez: First Astros reliever to pitch four scoreless innings with five or more strikeouts since Jose Lima on May 6, 1997.

Yan Gomes: Two solo HR Tuesday were the only two runs scored by Indians; first to do that for Cleveland since Bill Selby in September 2002.

Matt Barnes and Junichi Tazawa: Each allowed three hits and three runs Friday without recording an out. They were first pair of Red Sox pitchers to do that in same game since Bob Stanley and Tim Lollar in 1986.

Carlos Correa: First Astros player with a multi-run homer in his first two games since Eric Anthony in 1989.

Miguel Montero: First Cubs catcher with three hits, home run and three RBIs from cleanup spot since Hall of Famer Gabby Hartnett in 1935.

Michael Lorenzen: First Reds pitcher with a triple and 2 RBIs since Mario Soto in 1985. The most recent to do it in a loss was Larry Benton in August 1930.

Jon Jay and Randal Grichuk: The Cardinals' 7-8 hitters each had an RBI triple on Friday, the first pair of Cardinals to do it from the bottom third of order since Willie McGee and pitcher Neil Allen in 1984.