Logan Webb entered the 2021 season with 94 undistinguished major-league innings under his belt: A 5.36 ERA over 21 games pitched across 2019 and 2020. Bigger things were expected from the 24-year-old who had worked to master the intertwined art of sinkers and sliders, but it’s unlikely anyone saw Saturday night coming.
After proving himself as the most reliable starting pitcher on MLB’s best team, Webb took the mound as the San Francisco Giants stared down a monster NLDS matchup against the rival Los Angeles Dodgers — who finished a single game behind the Giants in the NL West.
Squaring off against playoff-tested ace Walker Buehler, Webb made the night his own — stifling the Dodgers for 7 2/3 innings, striking out 10 and notching 11 ground-ball outs. By the end, he was the hero as the Giants took a crucial 1-0 series lead with a 4-0 victory.
Economical with his pitches, Webb worked deep into the game, evoking the legendary starts of Madison Bumgarner and adding his name to all sorts of historical lists.
10+ strikeouts, 0 walks, 0 runs allowed in postseason debut:
2021 Logan Webb
2015 Jake Arrieta
— Sarah Langs (@SlangsOnSports) October 9, 2021
For some historical context here: What Logan Webb did tonight for the Giants was awfully rare and awfully special. In postseason history, only 30 times has a pitcher gone 7.2+, allowed 5 or fewer hits, 0 runs and struck out at least 10. Look at the names. An absolute who’s who. pic.twitter.com/bYAqZNIJX6
— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) October 9, 2021
Urged on by an invigorated Oracle Park crowd, he took his turn at bat even in the seventh inning. Giants manager Gabe Kepler only pulled his young starter after a Mookie Betts single presented a threat with the top of the Los Angeles lineup up.
Next up, the Giants will send Kevin Gausman to the mound against 20-game winner Julio Urías in Saturday night's Game 2.