James Paxton made history last night as the first Canadian-born pitcher to throw a no-hitter in Canada. The Mariners pitcher struck out seven Blue Jays batters while Seattle’s defense stepped up, making several spectacular plays to preserve the no-no.
I asked on Twitter last night what design I should use to commemorate the feat, and the most obvious answer came from the venerable Joe Shlabotnik of The Shlabotnik Report:
Seems like it should be something O-Pee-Chee for Big Maple.
— The Shlabotnik Report (@Shlabotnik_Rpt) May 9, 2018
Sean Manaea pitched the first no-hitter of the 2018 season last night against the Boston Red Sox. He struck out ten batters and only walked two. Marcus Semien score all three Oakland runs, crossing the plate after doubles by Jed Lowrie in the first inning and Stephen Piscotty in the third, and hitting a solo home run in the fifth.
The 2015 regular season is in the books, but the narrative is far from over. Clayton Kershaw struck out 300 batters, the first time a pitcher has reached that mark since 2002. Another cheater reached the 500-home run mark. And Max Scherzer pitched two no-hitters this year; the last pitcher who did that in the regular season was Nolan Ryan in 1973.
The National League Central is sending three teams to the postseason, but the Reds will be watching from home. Johnny Cueto, traded to the Royals in July, will attempt to put Kansas City over the top after the team fell to the Giants last year. The upstart Houston Astros, powered by Dallas Keuchel, will try to derail that plan. There are only two teams in the playoffs that I despise, so I fully expect a Yankees/Cardinals World Series this year.
I will post a few more highlights cards for the World Series winners and award winners as they are announced, but the regular season cards are finished. 125 “revamped” cards, 13 “highlights” so far, and 18 All-Star cards. Prior to the “revamped” design, 65 cards were posted, along with ten Will Ferrell cards plus four tribute cards to legendary players who have passed away. Add to that 200 “preseason” cards, and I would say 2015 was a busy year for TWJ cards.
You can see all the cards at TWJ cards on tumblr. Plans are already underway for an even better set in 2016.
Chris Heston of the San Francisco Giants became the first rookie since Clay Buchholz in 2007 to toss a no-hitter when he mowed down the New York Mets last night at Citi Field. Heston’s gem was the first no-hitter of 2015, after five were thrown in 2014 (including one by Giants teammate Tim Lincecum).
I was so caught up in self-pity over the awful Reds season that I totally missed the news that Jordan Zimmermann pitched a no-hitter for the first-place Washington Nationals. When I found out this afternoon, I did the proper thing and made a “highlights” card for him to post at TWJ cards on tumblr. But because I like you non-tumblr folks so much, I’m going to post it here as well…
This isn’t Zim’s first appearance in the TWJ cards set, but his earlier card is an UER with the incorrect spelling of his last name, made way back when I was putting a black border around the cards (which involved an extra step and I just got too lazy to do it)…
Unless something extraordinary happens in the playoffs (such as a no-hitter or perfect game), I don’t plan to make any more 2014 TWJ cards until the Series is decided, and then when the awards are handed out.
Speaking of awards, you have less than 24 hours to get your picks in to me. There are some very tight races so far, and your votes could make the difference. Click here if you have no idea what I’m talking about.
Yesterday’s combined no-hitter by four Philadelphia pitchers brings the total of 2014 TWJ highlights cards to twelve so far, with a thirteenth scheduled to be added later tonight/early tomorrow morning. Cole Hamels and the Philadelphia bullpen threw the eleventh combined no-hitter in MLB history; the first combined no-hitter occurred in 1917 when Babe Ruth and Ernie Shore shut down the Washington Senators without a hit. Interestingly, Ruth only pitched to one batter, and was ejected from the game for arguing balls and strikes after that batter walked; the batter was subsequently thrown out trying to steal, and Shore retired the next 26 batters without incident.
All three of baseball’s no-hitters this season have been thrown by pitchers from the Golden State: Josh Beckett, Clayton Kershaw, and today, Tim Lincecum. As I did for Beckett and Kershaw, I created a special 2014 TWJ card for the no-hitter.
So far this season, six special “highlights” have been created for the 2014 TWJ set. Albert Pujols‘ 500th home run, Pete Rose‘s return to managing, and the passing of Hall of Famer Tony Gwynn have been featured in addition to the three no-hitters. All six cards can be seen here.
To view the entire 2014 TWJ set, click here. To see cards created for your favorite team, type http://twjcards.tumblr.com/tagged/cincinnati-reds (replacing cincinnati-reds with your favorite team, dashes between each word) in the address bar of your browser. If you have a special request, you can submit those at this link. TWJ cards are web-only “virtual” cards, or “fun cards.” They do not exist in real life, unless you print them out on your inkjet printer at home.
The first no-hitter of the 2014 season was thrown by Josh Beckett, who shut down the Philadelphia Phillies on May 25 in Philadelphia. The Dodgers won the game 6-0. Beckett walked three and struck out six batters; this is the fifth time a Dodgers pitcher has no-hit the Phillies.
Congratulations, Josh Beckett.
Special card, unnumbered, Josh Beckett “NO-HITTER”
See more at TWJ cards on tumblr.
Only one walk…that was all that separated Homer Bailey from a perfect game in July. TWJ contributor Patrick commemorates the third Reds pitcher to pitch multiple no-hitters with a “fun card” of a set you don’t see very often: 1961 Nu-Card Baseball Scoops.
Joining Nolan Ryan as the only other pitcher to throw the last no-hitter of one season and the first no-hitter of the next, Homer Bailey keep the Giants at bay in Cincinnati Tuesday night for his second career no-no. Only two other Reds pitchers have thrown multiple no-hitters: Johnny Vander Meer and Jim Maloney.