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SD-LA: “There goes the no-hitter, the shutout, and the ballgame”

Posted by John Autin on July 9, 2011

-- In Los Angeles today, five Padres pitchers held the Dodgers hitless for 8-2/3 innings, but Juan Uribe doubled and Dioner Navarro singled him home for a 1-0 win. Uribe was batting .208 before today, Navarro .176 with 8 RBI in 40 games. The Padres were held to 1 hit by Rubby De La Rosa and 3 relievers.

A few facts and figures on this titanic clash:

  • Aaron Harang was replaced on the mound (not by a pinch-hitter) after 6 innings and 95 pitches. It was the 8th time in the last 20 years that a pitcher was lifted after 6+ IP with a no-hitter going and less than 100 pitches.  Three relievers got the next 6 outs, and Luke Gregerson got the first 2 outs in the bottom of the before surrendering the two hits. The last combined no-hitter was by the Astros over the Yankees on June 11, 2003. (Had Gregerson retired Uribe, it would not have immediately been a no-hitter, since the game would have gone into extra innings and only a full game qualifies as a no-hitter.)
  • It was the first game in which neither team topped 2 hits since a July 21, 2008 duel between Randy Johnson (ARI) and Rich Harden (CHC), and the first game with no more than 3 total hits since Matt Garza's no-hitter against Detroit on July 26, 2010. (That game, in turn, was the first of its kind since 1997.)
  • It was LA's 2nd straight 1-0 win over SD, and their 3rd straight shutout over all -- the longest streak this season and matching the longest team shutout streak since 1995, when the Orioles closed out a 71-73 season with 5 straight shutouts. No other team has had more than 3 straight shutouts in the last quarter-century.
  • It's just the 6th time in the last 20 years that a team has won back-to-back 1-0 games; the Dodgers were the victors in 3 of those 6 pairs. The Phillies were the last to do it, against Cincinnati in July 2010.
  • No truth to the rumor that the Dodger Stadium mound has been surreptitiously raised back to a Koufaxian 18".
  • The Dodgers had 5 hits in their previous win. No team has won more than 2 straight games with 5 hits or less since Cleveland won 3 straight in 1993.
  • San Diego's only hit was a 5th-inning single by Cameron Maybin. Despite a team BA of .246 last year (15th in the NL) and .233 this year (last), it was the first time the Pads were held to 1 hit or less since June 10, 2010 (a CG 1-hitter by Jonathon Niese); the last no-hitter against SD was by Jonathan Sanchez on July 10, 2009. (By the way, Sanchez also lost a 7-IP 1-hitter to the Padres exactly 3 months before his no-no.)

Finally ... While we may never see another "double-no-hitter" (in the Hippo Vaughn/Fred Toney sense), the conditions this year are better than at any time since 1968. Five teams began play Saturday with batting averages under .240: Atlanta .239, Washington .235, Oakland .234, San Diego .233, and Seattle .224 (that is not a misprint). The recent 3-game series between the Padres and Mariners saw a combined total of 11 runs and 33 hits; Seattle then played 3 games with Oakland that saw a combined total of 11 runs and 30 hits. And there have already been 20 games this year in which neither team topped 4 hits; that's more than the average of the previous 10 full seasons.

Thoughts? Tangents? You know you're looking for an excuse to talk baseball without mentioning DJ3K. Our blog lines are open!

40 Responses to “SD-LA: “There goes the no-hitter, the shutout, and the ballgame””

  1. DoubleDiamond Says:

    OK, I'll mention something else.

    The most interesting home run today for me was not Jeter's.

    On June 2, 1926, a player with the same last name and known by the same first name but with a different given first name hit his last career home run. It was for a team that today's home run hitter has played for in his career, but it's not the team he plays for now. (For instance, let's say that the guy who homered today is named Edward Smith and is known as Ed Smith, while the guy who homered in 1926 was named Edgar Smith and was also known as Ed Smith.)

    On May 31, 1924, the same player noted above who would later homer 2 years and 2 days later homered while playing for the same team that his namesake hit his home run for today. It was the last home run that the earlier player with that name would hit for this team.

    The guy who homered today first appeared in the major leagues in 2002, but today's was his first career home run. He has played for four different teams at the major league level, including two different stints with his current team, and he also played in the minors for a fifth franchise.

  2. NRPS Says:

    @1: Cliff Lee

  3. John Autin Says:

    This might sound weird, but I've gotten so used to typing "Phifer Lee" in the B-R player search field -- to directly bring up "the" Cliff Lee, instead of having to pick him from a list -- that I've begun to actually think of that as his name.

    (Yeah -- it sounds weird.)

  4. Naveed Says:

    Sanchez's one-hitter was actually the year after his no-hitter.

  5. statboy Says:

    @3, I can save you a little typing. Just type in "the le" and you'll be taken to his page.

  6. John Autin Says:

    @4, Naveed, thanks for the correction.

    @5, Statboy, thanks for the tip. But why does that work?

  7. statboy Says:

    @6, I'm not sure, but typing in "the ____" will usually take you to the most popular(?) player named ____, or with those letters in their name OR nickname.

    So, "the b" = Barry Bonds
    "the f" = Tim Lincecum
    "the k" = Ken Griffey
    "the jerk" = Jake Northrop (heh)

  8. Doug Says:

    The Blue Jays today picked up both a save and a blown save. They now have 15 blown saves for the season, and are converting save opportunities at a lowly 57% rate.

    At what point does John Farrell just start staying with whoever's pitching and only go to someone else if they run into trouble in the 9th?

  9. Charles Says:

    Two pitchers were lifted twice after pitching 6 or more innings of no-hit ball, Jim Maloney and Kent Mercker. All 4 were shutouts to that point. Both years, Kent Mercker, normally a reliever, had his longest stint as a starter. His 1993 incomplete game was a no-hitter with 3 pitchers. Kent Mercker's only career shutout (2 complete games) was a no-hitter vs the Dodgers. Jim Maloney had two career complete game no-hitters and one was 10 innings. Vida Blue pitched the first 5 innings of a no-hitter and also had a complete game no-hitter.

  10. John Autin Says:

    @9, Charles -- Thanks for the info on Maloney, especially. Any insight on why he was taken out of those 2 no-hitters? In the first one, 4/18/1964, he had thrown only 94 pitches (a pittance, in those days), had a 3-0 lead (over Sandy Koufax), and was not pinch-hit for. I'd guess he had a minor injury, since his next start came 7 days later. (Also, reliever John Tsitouris came within 1 out of completing the no-no; Frank Howard broke it up.)

    In the second one, 8/16/1967, Maloney left after a walk with 1 out in the 7th that broke up his perfect game; he had a 4-0 lead, and made his next start on schedule (a 2-hit shutout). I'd have to guess it was another minor injury; maybe he would have fought to stay in the game if he hadn't already thrown a no-hitter in 1965.

  11. Dukeofflatbush Says:

    @ John Autin & Statboy

    I am also guilty(?) of either lazy or creative (or just stupid) search queries.
    One of my favorites is Mariano Rivera, whom I type in as MO RIVER.
    I don't know why I find that funny. It sounds like a depression era rhythm and blues musician - like Ledbelly.
    But Statboy, why does "the f" give you Linceum?
    And for two of my favorite people, Timmy P. and Juan Pierre. I type - d'v - to get to Juan's page. His middle name is D'Vaughn and he just adores cheeseburgers from his home town, Mobile, Alabama.

    @ John Autin,

    I watched the game (1996) where DavidCone made his return from that scary aneurysm in his shoulder. There was a chance his career was done when the doctors first discovered the clot. It was his first game back in exactly 4 months and even before he threw a pitch, Torre (ironically) told the media that he was coming out of the game at 75 pitches whether he had a no-hitter or not.
    I recall this all to well because it was my 21st birthday. I had never to that point watched a no-no from beginning to end. Plus David always was one of my favorites from those rascally Met teams of the eighties. But my Mom had made me a cake and my family was waiting for me (I was in my college dorm). It was a 1pm game, and I think I told my folks to expect me at 2:30, well - I kept calling to ask for another 20 minute reprieve as the hitless innings mounted - And as is the sad but true case with many college dormitories today throughout America, some of the badder kids, from time to time, will engage in a can of beer or two. But after about my 9th beer and my 5th call home of postponement, I was told there was to be no cake. It turned out to be my last cake, my mom stopped after this, so I have no one to blame but David Cone for the 14 cakeless birthdays since.
    Coney threw 20 pitches in the first, walking the lead-off batter on 4 pitches, so i thought he'd be out of the game (and possibly baseball altogether) in an inning or two more. Then he settled down, but the Yankees, who were 17 games over .500 and had a great lineup were getting shutdown as well, but Coney was zipping through, then the Yanks lit it up for 4 runs in the top of the 7th, giving Coney the lead. Though Cone had 73 pitches thrown through 6 and was due to face Giambi and McGwire back to back in the 7th, he still had a no-hitter and Torre loosened the leash a bit and sent him out there. 1-2-3, he sent down the Giambi, McGwire and Berroa(?), going a few pitches over his 75 limit. And that's when I started funneling beer ("its so cold once it hits your lips")* - but Torre pulled Coney after that, and in steps some skinny 26 year old washed-up, no good, one dimensional failed starter named Mariano Rivera who proceeded to set down the next 5 A's before giving up a hit and ruining my birthday.

    Some funny notes on that game:
    From both line-ups, only Jeter, Mariano, Giambi and Matt Stairs are still in the majors.
    It was Matt Stairs' 37th PHing gig.
    Mariano Rivera's 5th career save.
    Jeter got his 150th hit.
    Joe Girardi caught the entire game, now misuses both Jeter and Rivera.
    Mariano Duncan hit .340 that year, but walked 8 times in 417 PAs.
    It was Charlie Hayes' 3rd game as a Yankee that year and Cecil Fielder's 30th. They both homered.

  12. Imbroglio21 Says:

    Cliff Lee's home run against the Braves was the 15th this year by a pitcher in MLB. Here are the other ones : ... Anyone noticed that this could almost be named "The Zac list"?


  13. ToddWE Says:

    @11, Duke -- Must be because he's...The Freak!

  14. Charles Says:

    @10 Jim Maloney also pitched 10 innings of no-hit ball on June 14, 1965. He gave up a home run and a single in the top of the 11th to lose 1-0 in a complete game.

  15. Anon Says:

    Just a note on the VIda Blue, 1st 5 innings of a no hitter in 1975. That was the final game of the year (9/28) and the A's had wrapped things up so Alvin Dark was getting everyone a little use just to get fresh for the playoffs which didn't start until 10/4. Blue went 5, Abbott & Lindblad each went 1 and FIngers went 2 to finish

    They played the entire last week of the season this way - starter goes 5 and 2 or 3 relievers finish up. You have to go back to Sept 23rd before the playoffs were wrapped up to find a game where the starter went more than 6. Didn't work very well as the A's were swept by the Red Sox in the playoffs FWIW. . . . .

  16. Dukeofflatbush Says:

    @ Doug

    Because relieving has become a sun-moronic part of baseball.
    I'm not talking about relief pitching, which is one of the better innovations in the game. The moronic part, is the no thought, robot mentality managers use in pitcher selection. It is often talked about on this site, that a team's 'closer' - would be better used in other situations. Say a two run lead in the 7th, and your starter has just walked the bases full. Do you want your best bullpen pitcher in? Or you do you want your third best pitcher in?
    Or choosing to take out a righty when he still has 3 to 6 outs in him, with the bases empty and a comfortable lead, just to bring in your lefty specialist to face a David Ortiz, wasting two arms.
    Or reling more on media scrutiny then your baseball know how, when making pitching match-ups.
    A manager would rather live with a mistake that followed the relief 'rules' - than having to answer to a beat reporter asking him why he left so-n-so in?

  17. Dukeofflatbush Says:

    @ Todd

    Yeah, a 'Doh!' on me. I forgot about nicknames for a second. sometimes they are not in the query results though. but any one with the last nam Rodriguez seems to ( )-rod. I'm going to Query '-rod and see how many pop up.

  18. Charles Says:

    @ 15 Good observation. They did the same thing in 1974 when they won the WS.

    In 1974, Oakland went 7-8 in their last 15 games with no Oakland starter giving up more than 3 unearned runs. Holtzman lost his last 3 decisions (1 in relief) to finish with 19 wins. 1975 was not as impressive.

  19. Neil L. Says:

    Doug, assume that the Blue Jays could convert their save opportunities at the ML average rate of 67%. That would be 0.67 x 34 = 23 wins, instead of the current 19 wins in save opportunities. Four more wins means 48-43 instead of 44-47. And that's only assuming the average save efficiency.

    But woulda's, coulda's, shoulda's are for non-contenders, like my beloved losers. 🙂

  20. stanmvp48 Says:

    I am not sure I recall the entire history of the save definition. It seems as though at one point you had to face the tying run or pitch at least an inning or something. Last weekend, the Rockies had a four run lead at home in the ninth. Betancourt came in to start the inning. (not a save situation) He retired two batters and then allowed a double and a single. Now with the tying run on deck and two outs Street came in and got a one out save. The ESPN win probability calculation had actually gone up for the Rockies.

    Undoubdetdly this will be worth money to Street and his agent when his next contract is negotiated.

  21. Mustachioed Repetition Says:

    I don't know how much team save percentage means. I'm sure a bad one is a bad thing. But that includes all the "blown saves" which occur in the 6th or 7th innings. Another team might leave its starter in, and he could give up the lead too, but it's not a save opportunity.

  22. Jim Says:


    Be careful with the save statistic and percentages. While a save can only be picked up by a pitcher who closes a game in the last inning a "Blown Save" can be picked up by any relief pitcher who relinqueshes the lead at anytime during the game. A better percentage would be to look at saves + holds

  23. BSK Says:

    "The S" brings up Jeter. What?

  24. BSK Says:

    Here are the rest of the "The _" searches...

    A –Arod
    B – Barry Bonds
    C – Derek Jeter
    D – Derek Jeter
    E – Arod
    F – Lincecum
    G – Ruth
    H – Pujols
    I – Ichiro
    J – Derek Jeter
    K – Ken Griffey, Jr.
    L – Barry Bonds
    M – Derek Jeter
    N – Derek Jeter
    O – Oswalt
    P – Pujols
    Q – Carlos Quentin
    R – Arod
    S – Derek Jeter
    T – Pujols
    U – Randy Johnson
    V – Vlad
    W – Oswalt
    X – Jimmie Foxx
    Y – Joe DiMaggio
    Z – Zack Greinke

    Some are obvious (Z, V). Some a bit less so, but make sense (Jeter has M and N presumably for Mr. November; Oswalt has W for Wizard of Os, though I'm surprised that Ozzie Smith doesn't have that). Some make no sense (E for ARod???).

    You can also do multiple letter searches (for instance, "the AB" brings up Felix Hernandez), but I am entirely too lazy to go through every possible permutation.

  25. BSK Says:

    Attempts at explanations for all the "the _ " searches (I'm bored and essentially unemployed so LAY OFF ME!)

    A – Arod - A for ARod or Alex
    B – Barry Bonds - B for Bonds
    C – Derek Jeter - C for Captain or Captain Clutch
    D – Derek Jeter - D for Derek
    E – Arod - E for Emannuel (middle name)
    F – Lincecum - F for Freak
    G – Ruth - G for George
    H – Pujols - Absolutely no idea
    I – Ichiro - I for Ichiro
    J – Derek Jeter - J for Jeter
    K – Ken Griffey, Jr. - K for Ken or Kid
    L – Barry Bonds - L for Lamar (middle name)
    M – Derek Jeter - M for Mr. November
    N – Derek Jeter - N for Mr. November
    O – Oswalt - O for Oswalt
    P – Pujols - P for Pujols
    Q – Carlos Quentin - Q for Quentin
    R – Arod - R for Rodriguez
    S – Derek Jeter - Absolutely no idea
    T – Pujols - Best I got is T for The Machine, but that is a real stretch
    U – Randy Johnson - U for Unit
    V – Vlad - V for Vladimir
    W – Oswalt - W for Wizard of Os
    X – Jimmie Foxx - X for having two X's in Foxx
    Y – Joe DiMaggio - Y for Yankee Clipper
    Z – Zack Greinke - Z for Zack

    The list obviously skews very recent. However, I have to assume these are programmed in. I can't think of a way for the search feature to be intuitive in any way. Who programs these things? And any ideas about the two mysterious ones and the very big stretch?

  26. Fantusta Says:

    his middle name

  27. BSK Says:


    Completely missed that, but it must be it. Still no idea about H for Pujols and I really think the T as I've offered it is a stretch.

  28. kds Says:

    @ 25, "The H" = El Hombre!

  29. Fireworks Says:


  30. BSK Says:

    H and S solved!

    Anything better than T for The Machine for Pujols? It doesn't even make a T sound!

  31. DoubleDiamond Says:

    Yes, I was thinking Sanderson, too. There was a hockey player named Derek Sanderson in the 1960s and early 1970s. Is that where Jeter's name comes from? His family was from Michigan, a hockey hotbed in the U.S.

  32. statboy Says:

    I wish that "The E" took you to Bill Buckner's page.

  33. BSK Says:

    Statboy FTW.

    There definitely are far better choices for many of these. Any other suggestions, either legitimate (like T for Teddy Ballgame) or hillarious like Statboys?

  34. BSK Says:

    Here's a few...

    U for Youkilis... fans chant "Youuuuuuuuuuk" which really just sounds like they're saying the letter U.

    Canseco for P, E, and D (HIYO!)

  35. Neil L. Says:

    @21 @22
    MR and Jim, believe me the Jays' relievers blown saves are "real" ninth-inning stinkers, not the slightly tainted seventh inning variety!

    There is no trustworthy closer to give the ball to late so the blown saves are spread around this year instead of being centered on one pitcher.

  36. mceraolo Says:

    Game Four of the '47 Series had two of the three: Cookie Lavagetto's hit off Bill Bevens with 2 outs in the bottom of the ninth broke up the no-hitter and won the game (the Dodgers had earlier scored a run without a hit).

  37. Charles Says:

    @ 36 Harvey Haddix's game

  38. Kahuna Tuna Says:

    "The 3" brings up Willie Davis. I was hoping "The 6" would bring up Antonio Alfonseca, but alas, no.

  39. Thursday Links (14 Jul 11) | Ducksnorts Says:

    [...] SD-LA: “There goes the no-hitter, the shutout, and the ballgame” (Baseball-Reference). John Autin examines last week’s debacle (well, one of them anyway) at Chavez Ravine. [...]

  40. Johnny Twisto Says: