On April 9, 2003, the Cubs and the Expos hooked up in a classic pitching duel. It was a crisp spring day in Chicago, with a gametime temperature of 40 degrees. On the mound for the Cubs was Mark Prior. The Expos sent Javier Vazquez to the hill.
Cubs Starter, Mark Prior
Javier Vazquez, starting pitcher for the Expos
The first inning set the tone for the game as each pitcher allowed a hit, but Prior struck out the side while Vazquez fanned two. In the second inning, Prior added one more K, while Vazquez struck out the side. However, he also allowed a single to Corey Patterson and a home run to catcher Damien Miller, putting the Cubs on top 2-0.
The strikeouts piled up during the game. In only one half inning, the bottom of the fifth, were no strikeouts recorded.
The Cubs added another run in the 8th on an RBI single by Mark Prior and won the game 3-0.
Vazquez went seven innings and ended up with 14 strikeouts. Luis Ayala pitched the 8th inning and added another strikeout. Mark Prior went the distance for the Cubs, scattering four hits and ending up with 12 strikeouts. That made a total of 27 strikeouts between the two teams.
Luis Ayala, who pitched the 8th and added one K to the total
And more evidence that the pitchers were throwing strikes, there were no walks in the game. The game was finished in a quick 2 hours and 15 minutes.
27 strikeouts without walking a batter, a major league record.