Los Angeles Dodgers right-handed pitcher Josh Beckett recorded his first career and this season's first no-hitter in the Dodgers' 6-0 win over the Philadelphia Phillies on May 25.
Josh Beckett recorded his first career no-hitter in a 6-0 win over the Philadelphia Phillies on May 25.
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MLB.com's Michael Radano reports it was the first Dodgers no-hitter in almost 18 years. Hideo Nomo last pulled it off on Sept. 17, 1996:
"Beckett, who has one career one-hitter, entered elite territory, as he threw the first no-hitter of his career in a 6-0 win over the Phillies at Citizens Bank Park on Sunday. He struck out six and walked only three.
"The last no-hitter for the Dodgers came on Sept. 17, 1996, in a 9-0 win at Colorado for Hideo Nomo. In that game, Nomo struck out eight and walked four on 110 pitches.
Beckett's masterpiece was the 24th in Dodgers franchise history, and the 11th since the franchise moved to Los Angeles in 1958.
"'I'm really touched by that,' said Beckett, who threw 80 strikes in his 128-pitch gem. 'The Phillies showed what a class organization they are by getting that to me. I thought maybe they would send it to L.A. But to get it that quickly really meant something. I have a pretty big ranch, I'll figure out some place to put it."
"Beckett, whose previous closest call to a no-hitter was 6 2/3 innings against (the) Detroit (Tigers) when he was with (the) Boston (Red Sox) on June 3, 2009, struggled to find the plate early. His first three pitches of the afternoon were balls, but he was effectively wild, as he survived the first inning with just one walk on 24 pitches.
"A walk to Marlon Byrd opened the second inning, and then Beckett zoned in as he retired the next 23 batters before a walk to Jimmy Rollins in the ninth with two out."
"'I didn't think about the no-hitter,' said Beckett, who took a deep breath before No. 3 hitter Chase Utley Chase Utley. 'I thought, 'Chase Utley is up next. I have to deal with him.'
"Beckett fell behind Utley 2-0 -- and then 3-1 -- but struck out the Phillies second baseman on the next two pitches, much to Utley's dismay. Utley felt strike two was a ball and actually started on his way down to first."
Dodgers catcher Drew Butera gave credit to Beckett's impressive fastball for the no-hitter on Sunday, per Radano's colleague, Erick Bacharach.
"He had a really good split-changeup today. In the scouting report, I'm sure they say, 'OK, he throws a changeup every once in a while.' But we had that working today, so off his fastball, that changeup was pretty good."
For his part, Los Angeles manager Don Mattingly told Bacharach that Beckett's performance was flat-out impressive.
"It's just impressive, period. You see so many guys get deked and not really be able to finish it -- and he kind of talked about it for half the game.
"He was one of those guys, he wasn't afraid to talk about it. He was basically, (when I checked on him) after, like, seven, he's like,'You're not taking me out.' And he was talking about the no-hitter the whole time."
MLB.com's Austin Laymance then puts Beckett's achievement in historical perspective.
"Sandy Koufax threw four no-hitters, one in each season from 1962-65. Three of those games came at Dodger Stadium -- including Koufax's perfect game against the (Chicago) Cubs on Sept. 9, 1965. That's the only perfect game in the history of the Dodgers.
"Koufax also no-hit the (New York) Mets and (San Francisco) Giants at home, and the Phillies on the road. The Hall of Famer is the only Dodgers pitcher with more than two no-hitters.
"Bill Singer held the Phillies hitless on July 20, 1970, the club's only no-hitter of the decade.
"The Dodgers then went without a no-no for nearly 10 years, until Jerry Reuss ended the drought on June 27, 1980, in San Francisco.
"Another decade passed before Fernando Valenzuela no-hit the (St. Louis) Cardinals on June 29, 1990. Valenzuela had the second no-hitter in baseball that day.
"Oakland's Dave Stewart completed his no-hitter in Toronto roughly 30 minutes before Valenzuela took the mound at Dodger Stadium.
"(Los Angeles) Angels manager Mike Scioscia caught Valenzuela's no-hitter, and he was also behind the plate two years later when Kevin Gross no-hit the Giants on Aug. 17, 1992."
The 34-year-old Beckett is in his 14th MLB season. He has previously suited up for the then-Florida Marlins, and Boston Red Sox.
He has an all-time win-loss record of 134-101 (.570) with 1,840 strikeouts and a 3.91 ERA in 1,982 innings pitched, per ESPN stats.
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