Milwaukee Brewers reliever Josh Hader was called upon to get an 8-out save on Monday’s game against the Cincinnati Reds. Hader was certainly up to the task and accomplished it in record-breaking style. In his 8 out save, Hader recorded all 8 of his outs on strikeouts. As MLB’s Stat of the Day states, Hader is the first pitcher ever to strike out 8 batters in an outing of fewer than 3 innings.
Hader entered the game with 1 out in the 7th inning with the bases empty. Hader struck out superstar Joey Votto and Scott Schebler to end the 7th and that was far from it. Hader was brought back in for the 8th where he struck out Eugenio Suarez, Alex Blandino, and Adam Duvall after walking Tucker Barnhart with 1 out. Hader finished his historic night by fanning Billy Hamilton, Jesse Winker, and Jose Peraza to end the game and complete the save.
“I don’t know what to say about Josh,” Manager Craig Counsell said. “Literally, your mouth is kind of wide-open, watching it. It was absolutely incredible.”
When Hader was asked to describe his performance, Hader responded with, “Fun. A lot of fun.”
“Just attack the hitters, and whenever [manager Craig Counsell] comes up to me and says I’m out, that’s my mindset,” Hader said. “I don’t limit myself on how many I go. Whenever I hear, ‘You’re done,’ that’s when I’m done.”
Despite the loss of Corey Knebel, Milwaukee’s bullpen has been stellar in 2018 with a 2.43 ERA on the season, good enough for third-best in baseball behind the Arizona Diamondbacks and the Toronto Blue Jays. Josh Hader has been a big part of that success in 2018 and he now owns a 1.00 ERA with a 39/5 strikeout/walk ratio in 18 innings of work on the season.