PITTSBURGH – Nick Kingham made on Sunday something that only a Major League pitcher had achieved in the past century.
In his debut in the premier class, Kingham brought a perfect game into the seventh inning, leading the Pittsburgh Pirates to a 5 -0 win over the St. Louis Cardinals. He joined Johnny Cueto in 2008 as the only pitcher allowed in the last 100 years with one stroke, at least nine strikeouts and no walks in his debut.
"So plan it to not let anyone in," Kingham said. "It's unbelievable how it happened, it's been fine from the beginning, it's cheesy, but it's all needed, I'm really happy and very happy about it."
The one-year rookie right-hander dropped out 20 times in a row before Paul DeJong split the left-field line with two from seventh place.
Kingham's 20 Straight Batters are most of a player in his MLB debut in expansion time (since 1
The local crowd responded with ovation before Kingham Marcell withdrew Ozuna. The fans stood up and cheered as Kingham left the field and waved. He finished with nine strikeouts on 98 pitches, 72 for strikes.
More than the numbers, Pirates manager Clint Hurdle was pleased with Kingham's attitude.
"It was his next start – watch him, it was just his next start," said Hurdle. "It had to be more than that. He split up very well."
Kingham, who was drafted by Pittsburgh in the fourth round of the 2010 Draft by the Sierra Vista High School in Las Vegas, got some love from fellow Las Vegan Bryce Harper
Another Vegas kid who left his mark on the game has pressed on! Congratulations to @NickKingham for an absolute star debut! Happy for You Great Man
– Bryce Harper (@Bharper3407) April 29, 2018
Kingham underwent Tommy John surgery in May 2015, allowing him to miss most of the 2015 and 2016 season.  In four starts with Indianapolis this season, Kingham was 2-1 with a 1.59 ERA.
Elias Diaz went 3 for 4 with three singles and two RBI as the Pirates won their fifth game in a row and completed a three-game round the Cardinals hours after Kingham was recalled by Triple-A Indianapolis for a startup spot. Right-handed Luke Weaver (2-2) took the loss after four runs on six hits with six strikeouts in 5 1/3 innings. He was impressed with Kingham's performance, but said he felt no additional pressure.
"He obviously has a good game, so you have to stay with him and set up the zeros as you usually do," said Weaver. "You just try to set that aside and let him do what he does, and concentrate on the task ahead, it was just a well-designed ballgame from him."
Weaver threw five goalless before he entered the bases with one loaded in the sixth.
Diaz dropped the right field line, earning Starling Marte and Josh Bell a 2-0 lead. Right-back Jordan Hicks replaced Weaver before Colin Moran extended the Pirates' lead to a 3-0 win with an RBI single-player who beat Corey Dickerson from third.
"Luke was good, very good," said Cardinal Manager Mike Matheny. Only unhappy in the sixth, an infield single and a bloop single. We are in trouble there. Tried to throw around, that's smart. Tried to give us a chance and (Diaz) came through with the big punch. "
Hicks beat Adam Frazier loaded with the bases, Pittsburgh gave a 4-0 lead after six, and David Freese had hit a pinch RBI single in the eighth to make it 5-0 Information from the Associated Press has been used in this report.