On September 9, 1987, Nolan Ryan of the Houston Astros strikes out 16 batters to surpass the 4,500-mark for his career, whiffing Mike Aldrete to end the seventh inning. Ryan strikes out the last five batters-and 12 of the last 13-he faces. At the plate, Ryan drives in the winning run in a 4-2 victory over the San Francisco Giants. Ryan now leads the N.L. in ERA (2.76) and strikeouts (226) but suffers an 8-15 record. Ryan predicts this “old dog” won’t reach number 5,000.
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