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How unusual was Francisco Liriano’s no-hitter?

May 4, 2011, 3:06 PM EST

Jim Thome, Francisco Liriano

A Baseball Reference search brings up 171 no-hitters of exactly nine innings since 1919. Liriano’s 1-0 shutout of the White Sox on Tuesday night doesn’t match up with most of them.

– Liriano tied Lefty Chambers for the lowest game score of the 171 outings.  Since there are no hits and usually no runs associated with a no-hitter, the base game score for a nine-inning no-no is 87.  After that, just add the strikeouts and subtract the walks.  Nolan Ryan (16 K, 2 BB) and Sandy Koufax (14 K, 0 BB) had the highest game scores in nine-inning no-hitters at 101.  Liriano (2 K, 6 BB) and Chambers (4 K, 8 BB) came in at 83.

– Liriano is the only pitcher in the whole 171 to get three double-play balls in his no-hitter.  Jose Jimenez in 1999 was the last two get two double plays.

– His two strikeouts were the fewest in a no-hitter since Jerry Reuss fanned two on June 27, 1980.  In fact, one had to go all of the way back to Dwight Gooden’s no-hitter in 1996 to find someone with as few as five strikeouts.

– Because of the walks and double plays, White Sox hitters were a mere 0-for-24 against Liriano.  The last no-hitter with just 24 official at-bats was Joe Cowley’s for the White Sox against the Angels on Sept. 19, 1986.

  1. BC - May 4, 2011 at 3:19 PM

    I was gonna say, Cowley’s game score had to be pretty low for a no-hitter – he generally walked everyone including the hot dog vendor.

  2. jwbiii - May 4, 2011 at 3:19 PM

    I’m thinking that his 9.13 ERA coming into the game was the highest for a no hit pitcher. I’m too lazy to check it and probably can’t go back past the early ’50s Retro Sheet public years. . .

    • sknut - May 4, 2011 at 3:38 PM

      Its the second highest, some guy back in the 30’s I think had an era of around 10.

      • rynev - May 4, 2011 at 4:49 PM

        That guy’s was after only one start though, so if you move the start threshold up to, well anything above 1 I suppose, Liriano’s was the highest.

      • Lukehart80 - May 4, 2011 at 4:55 PM

        Better than looking at his ERA before the no-hitter might be to look at it afterward, that way you eliminate someone who threw one after a bad first start to the season.

  3. yankeesfanlen - May 4, 2011 at 3:19 PM

    Maybe he’ll do better next time when he’s pitching for the Yankees and has a Gold Glove SS behind him.

    • bigxrob - May 4, 2011 at 3:23 PM

      The Yankees are getting a new SS?

      • yankeesfanlen - May 4, 2011 at 3:31 PM

        Oh, how I wish.

    • Manni Stats - May 4, 2011 at 3:27 PM

      I’m sure Francisco would prefer an actually-good SS to one who has a GG but sucks.

    • Mr. Jason "El Bravo" Heyward - May 4, 2011 at 3:27 PM

      Damn Len, you made me puke a little with that comment. Well done.

      • yankeesfanlen - May 4, 2011 at 3:33 PM

        I was going to add a little /snicker, snicker/ but I knew you guys would figure it out.

    • Jonny 5 - May 4, 2011 at 3:41 PM

      What are the Yankees going to only use him against the Wsox?

      • yankeesfanlen - May 4, 2011 at 4:24 PM

        Yeah, at the pittance we would pay him (a trade for THE FAT TOAD) we could use him for 2-3 games.

  4. Jonny 5 - May 4, 2011 at 3:43 PM

    Holy “Gamer” Batman!!

    • Jonny 5 - May 4, 2011 at 3:46 PM

      just act like you don’t see that, it was meant for another thread and something went very wrong.

      • Utley's Hair - May 4, 2011 at 4:00 PM

        Blame it on the pie, Jonny. Blame it on the pie….

    • Mr. Jason "El Bravo" Heyward - May 4, 2011 at 4:04 PM

      You fail, Jonny. You fail. The rain is to blame. Pie did no crime.

      • Utley's Hair - May 4, 2011 at 4:15 PM

        Damn. Throwing a fellow piebaby under the bus for a simple mistake. Stay classy, Heyward.

      • Utley's Hair - May 4, 2011 at 4:17 PM

        And you should be flogged for the Milli Vanilli paraphrase, too.

      • Jonny 5 - May 4, 2011 at 4:17 PM

        Damn you rain!! Even though I know for a fact that pie is wayyyyyy far superior than cake is, have I ever told anyone how happy I was to hear that tastykake co. will not go out of business? I have an affliction, like an addiction. To kandy kakes with peanut butter. OMFG! If they made a pie out them I’d be in heaven. I am ordered to ship these things to Texas regularly so my sis can get her fix. She sent me an E-mail today, and she’s out.

      • yankeesfanlen - May 4, 2011 at 4:23 PM

        Jonny- Thirty-ish years ago I was running a [insert derogatory chain store name here] in Harrisburg. The Tastykake route guy and I became buddies- I would promote the excess product on his truck, he would give me “samples” and take me to a couple of Phillies games per year. It got to be a tradition.
        Moral: Phillies Phans should like CAKE, as Ut well knows.

      • Jonny 5 - May 4, 2011 at 4:30 PM

        Yes, I like CAKE. But I love PIE. Me Love it long time.

      • Mr. Jason "El Bravo" Heyward - May 4, 2011 at 4:31 PM

        One more person with “stay classy” and I turn the car around.

      • Utley's Hair - May 4, 2011 at 4:41 PM

        Are we there yet, Classy Heyward?

  5. Utley's Hair - May 4, 2011 at 3:59 PM

    And it was against Edwin Jackson, who walked eight and struck out six en route to his own no-no last year—and he only needed 26 more pitches than Liriano.

    By the way, why does Baseball Reference still have the team in Tampa named the Devil Rays?

  6. cur68 - May 4, 2011 at 5:23 PM

    When Ozzie [Expletive] Guillen sees what a monumental offensive let down the CWS hat to put forth in order for this to happen he’s gonna ‘splode.

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