Tampa Bay Rays pitcher Chris Archer tossed seven shutout innings during Sunday’s 5-1 win over the Toronto Blue Jays, setting a franchise record by going a fourth consecutive start without allowing an earned run, per ESPN Stats & Info.

Going back to 2000, the 26-year-old righty is one of just six American League pitchers to go four straight starts without surrendering an earned run, with Cory Lidle of the 2002 Oakland Athletics the only hurler to extend such a streak to five starts.

The list includes Zack Greinke (2009) and Johan Santana (2004), both of whom won the Cy Young Award during the respective seasons in which they put together their streaks.

While few had Archer pegged as a Cy Young candidate heading into this season, his early statistics are impossible to ignore.

He owns a 3-2 record, 0.84 ERA and 0.74 WHIP through five starts, with the traditional numbers backed by a superb 37-6 strikeout-to-walk ratio.

Since allowing four runs (three earned) in an Opening Day loss to the Baltimore Orioles, Archer has surrendered just one unearned run in his subsequent four starts, though the unearned run did lead to his second loss of the season, with the Rays falling 1-0 to the Boston Red Sox back on April 21.

The right-hander was untouchable during the three starts that led to victories, as he allowed two or fewer hits over exactly seven scoreless innings in each game. Per Elias Sports Bureau (via ESPN.com), Archer is the only player in the modern era (since 1900) to toss three outings of seven or more scoreless innings with two or fewer hits allowed within his first five starts of a season.

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