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Thursday, May 06, 2021

Baltimore Orioles’ John Means pitches no-hitter vs. Seattle Mariners, misses perfect game with wild pitch on strikeout

John Means was almost perfect for the Baltimore Orioles on Wednesday, but he will happily settle for a no-hitter and one of the greatest pitching performances in team history.

Means retired all 27 batters he faced in a 6-0 victory over the Mariners at T-Mobile Park in Seattle, but he did allow a baserunner when Sam Haggerty reached on a third-strike wild pitch in the third inning. The Orioles then caught Haggerty attempting to steal second base, but the wild pitch nullifies the perfect game bid.

Means is believed to be the first pitcher in major league history to lose a perfect game on a third-strike wild pitch. According to Elias Sports Bureau research, he is the first pitcher to throw a non-perfect no-hitter with no walks, no hit batters and no errors.

Instead, Means pitched the first individual no-hitter for the Orioles since Jim Palmer in 1969—the longest stretch for any team in the majors without an individual no-hitter (the Orioles had a four-pitcher combined no-hitter in 1991).

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: May 06, 2021 at 12:23 AM | 8 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: john means, no-hitter

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   1. BillWallace Posted: May 06, 2021 at 05:13 PM (#6017406)
Nice to have something for Orioles fans to be happy about.

Means is an interesting case because in addition to coming from non-prospect status, he did something pretty rare. He had a year where he performed way above his peripherals and was an all-star even though he really wasn't a great pitcher. But instead of regressing to the mean(s), he greatly improved his peripherals, so that now he's actually a pretty great pitcher.

His fastball is only low 90s, but his changeup and command and control are elite. When he's on, it's constant fastball/changeup/fastball/changeup, all on the paint.
   2. SoSH U at work Posted: May 06, 2021 at 05:38 PM (#6017415)
It's nice to have a new addition to the imperfect perfect games list, joining Harvey, Ernie, Pedro and Armando (plus Don on the unofficial list).
   3. vortex of dissipation Posted: May 06, 2021 at 07:25 PM (#6017438)
It's nice to have a new addition to the imperfect perfect games list, joining Harvey, Ernie, Pedro and Armando (plus Don on the unofficial list).


There's also the multi-pitcher perfect game, which has happened in NPB, but not in MLB. The amazing thing about the Japanese combined perfect game is that it came in the deciding game of a Japan Series - Game 5 of the 2007 Japan Series, which clinched the Series for the Chunichi Dragons against the Hokkaido Nippon-Ham Fighters. Hitoki Iwase threw a perfect ninth, after Daisuke Yamai threw eight perfect innings; the Dragons won 1-0, in the only perfect game in Japan Series history. Yamai wasn't a star - he was a surprise starter in the game. He started that season in the minors, and had a record of 6-4 that year, in only 83 innings and 13 starts, although he'd pitched well down the stretch. He had only one complete game that year. Manager Hiromitsu Ochiai felt he was tiring in the eighth, and with only a 1-0 lead and the title in reach, he went for Iwase, who was a star, coming off his third straight season of 40+ saves. Ochiai felt it was more important for the team to win the series than for Yamai to get the solo perfect game, but a lot of fans felt Yamai should have been given the chance to finish it. Yamai did later pitch a regular season complete game no-hitter, in 2013.
   4. SoSH U at work Posted: May 06, 2021 at 07:38 PM (#6017441)
There's also the multi-pitcher perfect game, which has happened in NPB, but not in MLB. The amazing thing about the Japanese combined perfect game is that it came in the deciding game of a Japan Series - Game 5 of the 2007 Japan Series, which clinched the Series for the Chunichi Dragons against the Hokkaido Nippon-Ham Fighters. Hitoki Iwase threw a perfect ninth, after Daisuke Yamai threw eight perfect innings; the Dragons won 1-0, in the only perfect game in Japan Series history. Yamai wasn't a star - he was a surprise starter in the game. He started that season in the minors, and had a record of 6-4 that year, in only 83 innings and 13 starts, although he'd pitched well down the stretch. He had only one complete game that year. Manager Hiromitsu Ochiai felt he was tiring in the eighth, and with only a 1-0 lead and the title in reach, he went for Iwase, who was a star, coming off his third straight season of 40+ saves. Ochiai felt it was more important for the team to win the series than for Yamai to get the solo perfect game, but a lot of fans felt Yamai should have been given the chance to finish it. Yamai did later pitch a regular season complete game no-hitter, in 2013.


That's cool. Thanks.
   5. The Honorable Ardo Posted: May 06, 2021 at 11:50 PM (#6017489)
Didn't see the game - was there any realistic chance of retiring Haggerty at first base? Or was it a lost cause?
   6. shoelesjoe Posted: May 07, 2021 at 08:49 AM (#6017516)
was there any realistic chance of retiring Haggerty at first base? Or was it a lost cause?


Nope. Pitch skipped between Severino’s legs and went to the backstop. It actually looked like the catcher got crossed up (obviously nobody on base, so the signs shouldn’t have changed) and was expecting a high fastball instead of a breaking ball in the dirt.
   7. Bret Sabermatrician Posted: May 07, 2021 at 11:17 AM (#6017546)
At least it was fairly early in the game, I feel like it's not as big a disappointment as if he's in the 7th or 8th and it happens.

Unless you're Chip Carey, you're not really paying attention to a no-hitter in the 3rd.
   8. Greg Pope Posted: May 07, 2021 at 02:24 PM (#6017602)
So the three no hitters that have been thrown in MLB this year were not perfect due to a hit batsman, a hit batsman, and a wild pitch third strike.

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