CINCINNATI (AP) -Ten years later, Kerry Wood still has vivid memories of his greatest game.
The Chicago Cubs closer remembers everything about the day he struck out 20 batters in his fifth major league start, joining Roger Clemens as the only pitchers to accomplish the feat.
Wood remembers how he felt warming up on May 6, 1998. He remembers how the strikeouts piled up. He remembers certain pitches he threw to certain batters. He remembers what he ate for dinner to celebrate.
``It was one of those days I just had it,'' Wood said Monday before the start of a series against the Cincinnati Reds. ``Very few days stick out like that.''
Wood was a 20-year-old rookie when he delivered one of the greatest pitching performances of all-time. He allowed only one hit, a third-inning single by Ricky Gutierrez, in a 2-0 victory over the Houston Astros.
When he fanned Bill Spiers in the ninth for his 19th strikeout, Wood tied the NL record. He struck out Derek Bell to end the game and tie Clemens' major league mark. It wasn't until after the game, when he was being interviewed, that Wood realized he had struck out so many.
Wood finished the 1998 season ranked third in the NL in strikeouts and won the league's Rookie of the Year award. He missed the final month with a sore right elbow, then had reconstructive elbow surgery the next April, starting a run of arm and shoulder problems that undercut his career.
``It's been a roller coaster of good, bad, indifferent - sometimes not even here,'' Wood said. ``I've experienced a lot in Chicago.''
Ten years after his greatest game, Wood is the Cubs' closer, something he never envisioned as a possibility when he was a rookie.
``I probably would have said, 'No chance,''' Wood said. ``Probably with somebody else at some point in my career, but not with the same team.''

Recent MLB Discussions

dod 1st 5 thats it on Thu, Oct 2016 by Timmy1961
dod/cubs on Thu, Oct 2016 by Michael Cash
mlb early play on Wed, Oct 2016 by sharkey11

Top MLB Public Bets

MLB Top Stories

Thumbnail Kershaw tries to keep visitors' run going The Cubs seized a 3-2 edge in the NLCS by winning Games 4 and 5 in Los Angeles. Will Clayton Kershaw be able to save the Dodgers’...
Thumbnail North Siders' bats rise as NCLS progresses Anthony Rizzo is still batting well below .200 in the playoffs. Yet the Chicago first baseman seems to be heating up at precisely...
Thumbnail Hosts ask Urias to give them 3-1 NLCS edge Tonight, Julio Urias will make history in Game 4 of the NLCS. The Dodgers simply hope that it’s for all the right reasons.
Thumbnail Francona needs relief corps to thrive again The Blue Jays suddenly have life in the NLCS. Now, though, can they truly put fear in the Indians and send the festivities back to northern...
Thumbnail Arrieta tries to lift visitors at Chavez Ravine After getting punched in the mouth in Game 1 of the NLCS, the Dodgers struck back on Sunday night. Can they keep running with the Cubs as the action...
More inMLB Articles  

MLB Team Pages