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Sunday May 8, 2011 1:26 am

Justin Verlander throws second career no-hitter




Posted by Adrien Griffin Categories: Athletes, MLB, News,

Justin VerlanderJustin Verlander was one pitch away from being perfect today. As a small consolation, he was awarded his second career no-hitter. He’s now the 28th pitcher in history to record multiple no-hitters, and has thrown two of the Detroit Tigers' seven in franchise history. The hard-throwing righty needed only 108 pitches for his nine innings of work, and he regularly hit triple digits with his fastball on the radar gun. Behind him, his teammates played exceptional defense as many Toronto Blue Jays put the ball in play.

Verlander wasn’t overpowering in the way Detroit fans have come to expect from him. He averages better than eight strikeouts per nine innings, but only recorded four in the game. However, he did induce 13 ground balls and six infield pop-ups. Less than a handful of balls were hit hard off him in the game. His only blemish was a 12-pitch walk to Toronto catcher J.P. Arencibia, who was quickly erased in a double play.

No-hitters seem to come in streaks. In the last 110 years of baseball, there have been less than two no hitters per season on average (in 2,430 games per season). Only 264 no-hitters have been thrown in history. Two have come this week. Last year we saw three of the 20 perfect games in baseball history. Seven no-hitters happened in 1990. Mother’s Day is also the one-year anniversary of Dallas Braden’s perfect game in 2010.

Even the Toronto fans showed some class. Known to boo the home team as much as cheer them, few members of the crowd had left by the ninth, despite the home team being on the wrong side of a 9-0 score, and the all-but-dead rivalry between the Jays and Tigers, dating back to the 80s. A standing ovation followed Verlander’s strikeout of Rajai Davis to clinch it, and it couldn’t be more deserved. Perhaps now the ghost of Armando Galarraga’s perfect game can rest easy.

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