Ok first off let me say that if I could pick I would rather see a No Hitter for my team and not against. But since you can’t pick if you’ll ever get to see a No Hitter or a Perfect Game live I’ll take what I can get. “T” and I were in Cincinnati for the second part of our baseball road trip. The Giants lost two of three in Colorado (they won the game we didn’t go to). They had four games in Cincy and we were seeing the first two there. We still had high hopes for a few wins, but with the way the team was playing my hopes were not high.
After a miserable loss in game one where the Reds scored 8 runs in the first two innings and the Giants starter was pulled after two innings with almost a 14 ERA, there was really no shot for a win that day. So after three games in four days we’d seen three losing affairs. In fact the Giants were riding six losses out of seven games. Ouch. So June 2nd rolls around, Tim Lincecum was pitching against Homer Baily neither of which were having good seasons, both had losing records Timmy was 4-8 and Homer was like 5-7. After a few lackluster seasons I didn’t expect much from Timmy, I think I have not seen him win a game since 2009, and I’ve been lucky to see him play many times over the past five or six years, and have even seen him pitch in the 2010 playoffs. For a guy to have two Cy Young awards in back to back seasons just a few years ago, and fall as far as he has minus an amazing 2012 playoff stint from the bullpen. Oh well, but the Giants had history against Baily he was throwing a one hitter last year in the playoffs, and Dusty Baker, the Reds coach, pulled him in the first round series and the rest is history. Oh and by the way Baily threw a No No last year only 19 starts ago.
Anyhow, by the fifth inning I was thinking we were looking at something special. Baily was efficient on the field he had a few strike outs and was managing to keep a sad line up from making any contact with the ball. By the sixth, the Reds fans around us, “T” and I thought of the almost impossible A Perfect Game. By the seventh the stadium was electric; with every out the fans were going crazy. I was saying everything you would normally not talk about during A Perfect Game. If you’re a baseball fan you know what I mean. This was the Reds for crying out loud, if it was the Giants throwing this amazing game, I would never ever ever say Perfect Game or No Hitter. Alas in the seventh Bailey gave up a walk, the fans were still cheering but we were all a bit sad that the Perfect Game was not intact. Just in case I have a few readers that don’t know the difference between a Perfect Game and No Hitter.Alas in the seventh Bailey gave up a walk, the fans were still cheering but we were all a bit sad that the Perfect Game was not intact. Just in case I have a few readers that don’t know the difference between a Perfect Game and No Hitter. A PG is not allowing any batter to reach base in any fashion. There are 27 outs, so that means recording all 27 out’s by strike out, fly out or ground ball. In the history of Baseball there have only been 27 PG’s. A NH is when a batter reached based either by walking, error or hit by pitch. In other words, not getting a hit, but still allowing a runner to reach base. In the 100 plus years of baseball there have been 327 No Hitters. In that span there have been roughly 200,000 regular season games. So seeing a No No is incredibly special. I personally only know four people besides myself that have seen one in person. I know I’m geeking out here, but what can I say. I never thought I’d get to see one and I’m just tickled pink that I got to check off another bucket list item.
So fast forward to the ninth inning and the Gants have still only had one base runner on that walk in the seventh, no one else has even gotten close to getting a hit, so the No No was still intact. By this time, there was no choice but to root for the No No, we were standing and cheering along with the other 27,000, hoping to see history in the making. I was cheering and getting horse like everyone else. With two out and Gregor Blanco at bat, all it took was a soft liner and the ballpark exploded when history was made. What a damn cool experience to be a part of. To think “T” and I planned this trip in February with no other criteria that this series was after Colorado, and I could get the time off from work. Plus it let us see four games on the road and knock off another ballpark, neither of us had seen.
Some funny stats form the game and more recently. The No Hitter was on July 2, 2013 the losing pitcher was Tim Lincecum. 11 days later Tim Lincecum on July 13 threw his own no hitter in San Diego against the Padres. It was the first time since 1906 that a pitcher was involved in two No No’s in the same year. Crazy, let’s hope that they can keep this crazy stuff up. The Reds are in San Francisco this week to play four games against the Giants, and Timmy is pitching but not against Baily. Stay tuned.