Tigers Baseball Outsider

a thinking fan's perspective

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Verlander Tosses His Second No Hitter

Justin Verlander faced 27 batters on his way to pitching a no hitter against the Toronto Blue Jays.

Verlander was perfect through seven and a third innings when he gave up a close outside call for ball four and walked Arencibia to wreck the perfect game.

Arencibia doesn't bite on ball 4

But you know – you might ask yourself – if you’re pitching a perfect game, and find yourself 5 outs away from being perfect – and you have a 3-2 full count, do you throw just off the plate to get the hitter to swing?

That was the pitch to make – and Justin had the guts to make it.

Arencibia didn’t bite. And he got first base.

And Verlander’s bid for perfection ended. But not the no hitter.

The last time we saw a 28 batter no hitter by a Tiger pitcher was of course Armando Gallaraga’s perfect game spoiled by Umpire Jim Joyce’s bad call.

But no such call came today.

Last week at this time, Brad Penny was working on a no hitter when a hard hit ball behind third snagged by Brandon Inge resulted in a not so perfect throw right of the first base bag and in the dirt that Miguel Cabrera could not hang onto to tag the runner. The dispute was that Inge was not given an error for the poor throw, and it stood as the hit the broke up Penny’s no-hit bid.

But Penny was noticeably getting weaker – and his control was getting away from him. Watching the game, you really didn’t think Penny was going to last the rest of the game.

But we never got a chance to find out.

But Justin Verlander left us no doubt – from the third inning through the ninth.

In fact he was breaching the 100 MPH threshold throughout all nine innings.

This was Verlander’s second no hitter – the first in 2007 against Milwaukee.

And the Toronto fans, the same fans that threw garbage at the Tigers in last year’s opening series, well, this time they all stood up and cheered Verlander on.

And they cheered when he beat their Blue Jays.

He stepped off the mound – subtly pumping a fist – and unless you knew what was happening - Verlander’s reaction might suggest he won the game. Nothing more.

Now that’s command.


  1. Willie FergusonMay 7, 2011 at 9:31 PM

    hold on - 28 hitters? Surely he faced 27, as the runner on base was eliminated on a double play?

  2. Willie, you are certainly right... thanks for catching me and calling me out on it! I do appreciete it.

    I guess I am not as smart as I think I am :)


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