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Clayton Kershaw throws first no-hitter; misses perfect game by an error

Jun 19, 2014, 1:09 AM EDT

Clayton Kershaw Clayton Kershaw

It was baseball’s best pitcher at his absolute best Wednesday night, as Clayton Kershaw struck out a career-high 15 in a no-hitter against the Rockies.

The only Colorado hitter to reach base in the game was Corey Dickerson on a soft grounder to shortstop in the seventh. Hanley Ramirez, who was iffy to start tonight because of an injured finger on his throwing hand, charged it well, but then threw wide of first base for the error. Ramirez ended up coming out of the 8-0 game for defense after the inning.

Kershaw entered the ninth at 101 pitches, but he got an easy grounder from D.J. LaMahieu on his first pitch of the frame and a popup from Charlie Culberson on the second. He then struck out Dickerson on four pitches to end it.

Kershaw joined teammate Josh Beckett as the only pitchers to throw no-hitters so far this year. Beckett got his May 25 against the Phillies. They became the first set of teammates to throw no-hitters in the same season since Burt Hooton and Milt Pappas did so for the Cubs in 1972.

Kershaw topped his previous high of 13 strikeouts established April 15, 2009 against the Giants. It was his eighth career shutout and first in 10 starts this season.

  1. kkkershaw22 - Jun 19, 2014 at 1:13 AM

    Not a perfect game but a perfect pitcher, way to go

  2. dannymac17 - Jun 19, 2014 at 1:20 AM

    Thanks Hanley.

    • sarenaencizo - Jun 19, 2014 at 1:33 AM

      Ok what your name and how old are you

      • dannymac17 - Jun 19, 2014 at 1:42 AM

        im 30. i live in los angeles. anything else?

      • dannymac17 - Jun 19, 2014 at 1:50 AM

        after multiple attempts to comment on my wordpress i just want to know what is wrong with you.

      • daviddmsvcp - Jun 19, 2014 at 6:24 AM

        Well doctor, what is your diagnosis?

      • kindasporty - Jun 19, 2014 at 6:47 AM

        Who’s your daddy? And what does he do?

    • eas21 - Jun 19, 2014 at 8:23 PM

      that play was disappointing yes.. but just a couple of thoughts. physical errors are part of the game as opposed to mental errors which are unaceptable. if his head wasnt in the game, he wouldnt have charged the ball or he would have charged it late or would have thrown it to 2nd or some other crazy move. look at it this way; if he hadnt thrown the ball, it the play most likely would have been scored a hit and there goes the no hitter. in short, at least he was in the game and tried to make the play; was just unfortunate it was an error.

  3. thetoolsofignorance - Jun 19, 2014 at 1:22 AM

    The joy on his face as he was closing out the game was delightful. He was fully in the moment and aware of what he’d done so far. Then he’d gather himself and face the next batter and repeat. Just a great series of moments from a great pitcher.

  4. 2bbige - Jun 19, 2014 at 1:22 AM

    Thing of beauty from a great Dodger teammate and player. GO BLUE!

  5. kiwicricket - Jun 19, 2014 at 1:24 AM

    Can’t do much more than that! He pitched perfectly.

    Hanley might be picking up dinner after the game.

  6. antaresrex - Jun 19, 2014 at 1:24 AM

    Thrilled for Kershaw. He’s a treat to watch, and I hope we get to see another decade of this from him.

  7. elmo - Jun 19, 2014 at 1:26 AM

    Look out Giants, Dodgers are finally coming to life.

  8. yahmule - Jun 19, 2014 at 1:28 AM

    So thrilled and excited for Clayton. Completely dominant. The Rockies squared up just a single ball all night, a line drive that Rutledge pulled a few feet foul in the eighth inning. The 15 strikeouts were the second most ever in a no-hitter. AJ Ellis – fresh off knee surgery – literally tried to run through a brick wall to end the ballgame.

    I look forward to posing next to Clayton’s statue in front of Dodger Stadium some day.

  9. jya87 - Jun 19, 2014 at 1:31 AM

    Awesome. You knew it would happen sooner or later. Congratulations to Kershaw! Hopefully the first of many more.

  10. lanflfan - Jun 19, 2014 at 1:35 AM

    Congrats to Kershaw. He better buy dinner and a new car for Rojas for that great play on Tulo’s grounder.

  11. beavertonsteve - Jun 19, 2014 at 1:56 AM

    102 Game Score. That is insane. Second best 9 inning score behind Kerry Woods’ 20 K performance.

    • yahmule - Jun 19, 2014 at 2:02 AM

      His curveball was just a thing of beauty tonight. I’ll rewatch this game many times.

  12. ch0psuey - Jun 19, 2014 at 2:00 AM

    Nice job Kershaw. Would have been a lot more sweet against a contending team however.

    • yahmule - Jun 19, 2014 at 2:08 AM

      Instead of the team that’s leading the major leagues in OPS.

      • paperlions - Jun 19, 2014 at 8:51 AM

        A non-park adjusted stat for the Rockies?

        The Rockies road OPS is 20th in MLB, right behind the Mets.

        I agree that it was a dumb comment, but citing what Colorado does at home doesn’t win the argument, especially when the no hitter is one of the most pitcher friendly parks in MLB.

  13. infieldhit - Jun 19, 2014 at 2:24 AM

    I hope Hanley doesn’t get too much grief. Once the final out is made, settling for a no-hitter instead of a perfect game probably feels like settling for a championship in 5 games instead of 4.

    • daviddmsvcp - Jun 19, 2014 at 9:10 AM

      I have to disagree. There have only been 24 perfect games. There have been many more no hitters.

      Sadly, for Hanley, this was a bit of a “Bill Buckner” moment. Hanley made a crucial error. I say that with no emotion. Hanley is simply going to have to live with it. It won’t be easy for him.

      • koufaxmitzvah - Jun 19, 2014 at 10:05 AM

        This wasn’t Bill Buckner. That lost a World Series which would have ended a 60+ year drought. This was an error in the 8th. On a slow bouncer that he had to throw on the run.

      • daviddmsvcp - Jun 19, 2014 at 10:56 AM

        Yes, I know it was not Bill Buckner. That is why I said that it was a bit of a “Bill Buckner” moment. As in, not quite a “Bill Buckner” moment. But kind of like one.

        Hey, look on the bright side. At least the official scorer ruled it an error and not a hit.

        A no hitter looks a lot better than a one hitter.

        But a Perfect Game looks a lot better than a no hitter.

  14. wfon1 - Jun 19, 2014 at 3:53 AM

    I would like to know… where was the game played… In L.A:? When was the last no-hitter thrown by a Dodger in Dodger Stadium? This article should have included that.

    • nothanksimdriving123 - Jun 19, 2014 at 4:01 AM

      1995 Ramon Martinez, Los Angeles vs. Florida, NL, July 14, 7-0.

    • nothanksimdriving123 - Jun 19, 2014 at 4:07 AM

      The Rockies have only been no-hit 3 times, and amusingly the last two times have been by the Dodgers (Nomo in 1996 the other).
      And personally, I was thrilled to get an email from my nephew at the end: seems his dad, my brother, took him and his 2 siblings to the game!!! This after my other two brothers went to last Friday’s Kings game and saw them win the Stanley Cup. Good week for the family!!!

  15. Brian Murphy - Jun 19, 2014 at 4:30 AM

    I was there. It was my first no-hitter, and it was amazing. Many hours later, I can’t describe my feelings other than stunned.
    I’ve been to several hundred baseball games in my life and never thought I would see one. My father has been to close to 1,000 games and was assured he would pass away before he ever saw one. I was able to share this with him tonight. That is why you go to baseball games: You never know when something special will happen, on the field and off.

    • Old Gator - Jun 19, 2014 at 7:56 AM

      I was at Al Leiter’s no-hitter against these same Rockies. Yeah, you never believe you’ll be “at one.” As it unfolds, you keep telling yourself that something’s just got to bust the bubble. When it doesn’t, things keep getting more and more surreal, and by that last batter you’ve got your heart in your throat. And then you scream your guts out and you float out down the ramps to your car – stepping out of the stadium and back into the real world is like the shower suddenly turning cold. It’s a great experience.

    • CyclePower - Jun 19, 2014 at 10:13 AM

      Best comment I’ll read here.

    • jashton11 - Jun 19, 2014 at 1:19 PM

      Awesome! That’s a fan’s dream come true. Glad you got to experience it.

  16. Jonny 5 - Jun 19, 2014 at 6:15 AM

    I think it’s up for debate on who the best pitcher in baseball is honestly. One of the very best for sure. Congrats to Kershaw.

  17. DelawarePhilliesFan - Jun 19, 2014 at 7:26 AM

    Terry Mulhollands no-hitter was the same thing – only base runner was an error, and that guy was retired on a Double Play to the next batter.

    I think these should count as Perfect Games.

    • johnnysoda - Jun 19, 2014 at 7:47 AM

      Only they’re not perfect games. The definition of a perfect game is that no runner reaches base. An error counts as reaching base.

      The same thing happened to Jonathan Sanchez for the Giants in 2009.

      • DelawarePhilliesFan - Jun 19, 2014 at 9:07 AM

        Yes – I know what the definition is.

        I guess I am saying it would be nice if they defined perfect game as No Hit, No Walk, No HBP. There isn’t anything a pitcher can do about an error.

      • infieldhit - Jun 19, 2014 at 12:21 PM

        Yeah, but I feel like no-hitters and perfect games are almost as much about the defense as the pitcher, even if the latter gets all the glory.

    • sabatimus - Jun 19, 2014 at 9:00 AM

      And if there were replay at the time Armando Galarraga would have had a perfect game. But there wasn’t, and that’s just the way it goes.

      • DelawarePhilliesFan - Jun 19, 2014 at 9:10 AM

        Right – I know. Just would be nice to recognize a No Hit No Walk No HBP game as effectively the same thing.

        Armando’s game would have been really bizarre in this day….everyone would be huddled around the field, the announcers would be saying “Oh, I think this is definitely going to be overturned”, and the from the dugout the sign would come, and the celebration would start. Would be a weird scene

      • tmc602014 - Jun 19, 2014 at 3:21 PM

        We need a new category. Leave Perfect Game alone, even if it would be more perfect if every hitter was struck out. Leave no-hitter alone. Have an in-between category for a Perfectly Pitched Game.

  18. nottinghamforest12 - Jun 19, 2014 at 7:59 AM

    Hot Dog Hanley once again doing what he can to spoil someone’s moment in the spotlight. Get a grip man. It’s not always about you.

    • koufaxmitzvah - Jun 19, 2014 at 8:08 AM

      Huh? Did Hanley say or do something afterward? From what I can tell, he was upset at himself. He wasn’t one of the guys in the dance circle. He wasn’t jumping with Clayton by the mound.

      But please let’s do some anonymous character assassination because your impressions are bigger than the story. Sweet.

    • American of African Descent - Jun 19, 2014 at 8:53 AM

      I some people need to adjust their sarcasm fonts.

      • koufaxmitzvah - Jun 19, 2014 at 10:06 AM

        Possibly, but Hanley is getting grief he doesn’t deserve, and mostly from himself.

      • daviddmsvcp - Jun 19, 2014 at 2:24 PM


        Cost the pitcher a perfect game.

        Just the facts.

    • thetoolsofignorance - Jun 19, 2014 at 11:25 AM

      The badly bruised throwing hand & the ailing shoulder for which he received a cortisone shot didn’t have anything to do with it, right? Nope, he was a hot dog or some other sausage.

      Meanwhile, in reality land, he”s playing through a lot of pain and was able to work a walk and come across to score the second of two runs in the first. But never mind the hit and RBI he also had. Lets just blame poor injured Hanley Ramirez because he was helping his team win and made an error that was meaningless to the outcome of the game.

      • raysfan1 - Jun 19, 2014 at 12:32 PM

        Yes, and one could also add a couple more points–(1) sometimes even uninjured players make bad throws, being human, and (2) with the Dodgers up 8-0 after 4, the manager could have easily put in a defensive sub earlier to rest Ramirez’ injured hand and shoulder.

        No matter how anyone looks at it, the ire some are directing at Ramirez over that error is just nuts.

  19. kastout11 - Jun 19, 2014 at 9:09 AM

    He is just nasty. Without a doubt, far and away, the best pitcher in MLB. Some would argue, it is Scherzer, but Kershaw is clearly the best. Ramirez is taking a beating, but really he shouldn’t have even been in the game. The scary thing is Kershaw has not even hit his prime yet, and he is only getting better.

    • claymatthewshairplugs - Jun 19, 2014 at 11:53 AM

      Anyone that would even think Scherzer is in the same class as Kershaw needs to watch more baseball. Scherzer had one great year and this year he’s coming back down to Earth. Kershaw is no doubt the best pitcher in baseball and this is coming from a Giants fan.

  20. JT - Jun 19, 2014 at 9:35 AM

    I wonder who elbow dropped Hanley?

  21. serbingood - Jun 19, 2014 at 12:29 PM

    Wonderful for Kershaw.

    I am a MLB.TV subscriber. When does Dominoes start the pizza give-a-way?

  22. jimeejohnson - Jun 19, 2014 at 8:55 PM

    Clayton Kershaw could be the best pitcher in baseball. The Dodgers are fortunate to have him. You’ve got a lot of great pitching between San Francisco and Los Angeles, but no one is better than Kershaw.

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