A shutout in baseball is a statistic assigned to a pitcher who throws a complete game allowing no runs by the opposing team. This term is also often used as a verb, as a team can be described as ‘shut out’ when they have failed to score for a period of time in a game, even if this is just for a short while and the team manages to score runs at a later point in the game.
When Are Shutouts Awarded to Pitchers?
Shutouts are only accredited to pitchers under either of the following two circumstances:
1: A pitcher pitches a complete game allowing no runs from the opposite team.
2: A pitcher enters a game where there is none out in the first inning before the opposing team has scored, they strike out the side without scoring, and then they pitch the remainder of the game without allowing the opposing team to earn a run.
For a game to be marked as complete, the pitcher must pitch at least 9 innings, as well as any additional innings that follow if the game goes into extra innings. If two or more different pitchers contribute to a shutout in a game, the league statistician will record this as such in the official pitching records of the league.