How the mighty hath fallen

The evil empire has fallen quite a bit from their lofty 20-4 start, and this latest debacle handed them by the Astros is another low point for me to enjoy. Nevermind the fact that this took a record 6 pitchers, it’s the first no-hitter against the Yanks in 45 years – that’s 6980 games! And it’s been over 50 years since this happened in Yankee Stadium. The one thing I can say about the Yanks is that they certainly handled the loss with some class:

By the time the Astros returned to their clubhouse, the Yankees had left bottles of Mumms champagne in front of the lockers of all six pitchers.

Side note – the only other no-hitter this year was thrown by Kevin Millwood of my Phillies against San Fran. Hmm, both no-hit efforts this season have been against top-offensive team – do you think this means something? Nah.

Sportsline was nice enough to provide a complete list of all no-hitters ever thrown in the majors. Scrolling through was lie a stroll down memory lane, especially when I got to 1990-1. I was still really into baseball back then, and those seasons both became known as the “year of the no-hitter.” That span included no-hit performances by Phillies’ pitchers each year – the first by Terry Mulholland against San Fran (am I repeating myself) and the second by Tommy Greene against Montreal. The great Nolan Ryan put one up both seasons to bring his career total to a record 7. And an unknown (but up-and-coming) pitcher from Seattle threw the first complete game no-hitter of that stretch (second overall). He only went 14-10 with a 3.65 ERA that year, but became known for his intimidating 6’10” frame – Randy Johnson. By the end of all these shenanigans, the major leagues tallied 7 no-hitters each season (the previous high was 6 in both 1908 and 1969). And just because I love tossing the number 7 around so much, that happens to be the number of teams whose last no-hit game was during that stretch (thanks to Kevin Millwood as the Phils were number 8 ). 🙂

I’ll end this little frenzy of useless information with another bit of no-hit trivia. There is one unofficial Perfect Game in MLB history. June 23, 1917 – Ernie Shore retired 26 straight batters to lead Boston to a 4-0 victory over Washington. Unfortunately, the starter had walked Ray Morgan before he was ejected. And just because it wouldn’t be interesting without a little twist at the end, that starter was none other than #7 himself, Babe Ruth. (OK, just kidding about the #7 part, the Red Sox didn’t even wear numbers at the time – but it really was Babe Ruth)