The incredible Max Scherzer has done it again. For the second time this season, the Washington Nationals right-hander flirted with perfection and ultimately tossed a no-hitter, this time thoroughly dominating the New York Mets at Citi Field.
In his previous no-hitter against the Pirates on June 20, Scherzer was one pitch from perfection, but ended up hitting Pittsburgh’s Jose Tabata with a pitch. This time around, he was perfect into the sixth, losing his bid when third baseman Yunel Escobar short-armed a throw to first base for an error.
Two minor blips are all that separate Scherzer from becoming just the 24th pitcher in MLB history to complete a perfect nine-inning game. He also easily could have been the first pitcher ever with multiple perfectos. Instead, he’ll settle on becoming the sixth pitcher to throw two no-hitters in the same season, which is elite territory in its own right.
The others on that list are Johnny Vander Meer (1938), Allie Reynolds (1951), Virgil Trucks (1952) and Nolan Ryan (1973). Roy Halladay gets special mention because his second no-hitter in 2010 came during the postseason.
There are few words to describe just how good Scherzer was on Saturday night. He had the Mets overwhelmed right from the beginning, and only seemed to get stronger as the game moved along. Perhaps he drew strength from his frustration stemming from the error. From that point on, Scherzer left no doubts at all. He took matters into his own hands, striking out nine straight batters beginning in the sixth inning and leading up to the final out, when he got Curtis Granderson to pop up on the infield.
— MLB GIFS (@MLBGIFs) October 4, 2015
All nine of those strikeouts were swinging, by the way, and he started it right at the top of New York’s order. Overall, he fanned 17, which tied Nolan Ryan for the most strikeouts in a no-hitter. It’s also a new season high for Scherzer.
His fastball was blistering. His curveball was sharp. And his mentality was the same as always. Once he had the baseball, he attacked the Mets lineup and slowly killed their confidence. Then he finished them off and celebrated making history.
Also worth noting, Scherzer has now no-hit two postseason teams in New York and Pittsburgh. He also two other no-hit bids that lasted beyond the sixth inning. No other pitcher had more than two.
The no-hitter was the seventh in MLB this season, which is wild considering there we none in April or May. Aside from Scherzer, Chris Heston, Cole Hamels, Hisashi Iwakuma, Mike Fiers and Jake Arrieta have all made history.
Now we wait to see if there’s one more no-hitter to come on baseball’s final day. It’s happened each of the last two years. If it happens again this year, the regular season will be going out with an extra special bang.
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