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  1. One could argue that Anibal Sanchez’s no hitter is up there with Clay Buchholz as well due to the fact he was a rookie. Then again some would argue it shouldn’t have been a no hitter b/c Eric Byrnes beat the throw on the last ground out in the game.

    Really enjoyed this article.

    Comment by JD — April 12, 2010 @ 4:31 pm

  2. Yeah, but it was in 2006…. I’m too lazy to do more than this. Maybe some other time.

    Comment by Matt Klaassen — April 12, 2010 @ 4:35 pm

  3. Matt,

    Why rank them by wOBA? It’s a no hitter – wOBA is of course a wonderful measure of total offensice effectiveness, but we just need plain old team BA.

    That’s really the only appropriate way to calculate BA.

    A team full of Mark McGuire’s would be ungodly effective at scoring runs, but they wouldn’t be – relatively speaking – all that hard to no hit. Sure, you might walk the bases loaded and THEN walk in a run, but they aren’t that hard to no hit.

    Vs a team full of Juan Pierre’s (insert your favorite high BA low OPS “grinder” here :)), would be MUCH harder to no hit.

    Comment by Patrick — April 12, 2010 @ 4:59 pm

  4. Err, not “appropriate way to calculate BA”. Wow. I meant “appropriate way to rank no hitters”

    Comment by Patrick — April 12, 2010 @ 4:59 pm

  5. I thought about this, but I figured I just wanted to see how impressive it was as a display of shutting down an offense, not just avoiding hits.

    Comment by Matt Klaassen — April 12, 2010 @ 5:11 pm

  6. Good fun stuff! I wonder, sort of along JD’s query, what the ranking would be if you (rather, one) also took into account the pitcher who threw them in addition to the offense.

    Comment by Bah! — April 12, 2010 @ 6:03 pm

  7. “…no-hitters are fun to watch (unless your team is the victim, of course)…”

    I know that this is not the point of the article, but I am going to disagree with you here. I may be a Seattle Mariners fan, but I am also a Baseball Fan. If I go to a game at Safeco Field and some kid named Jeff Niemann takes a no-hitter into the 7th, then I am going to root for him to finish it. Witnessing such a performance would be a treat, even if it was the Mariners who were getting mowed down.

    Of course, it would be different if the game was being played in October…

    Comment by max — April 12, 2010 @ 6:10 pm

  8. Can’t disagree enough. I despite it when my team is getting no-hit, I don’t care if the pitcher is a rookie war-veteran cancer survivor and the score is 15-0, I pray for him to give up a hit. Maybe I’m a terrible person but that’s my visceral reaction.

    Comment by Joseph — April 12, 2010 @ 6:12 pm

  9. Quick, meaningless comment on the Verlander no hitter: Ryan Braun was not in the lineup for Milwaukee that day (although i can’t remember if he made a pinch-hit appearance). This would probably knock the team wOBA down a few points.

    Comment by brett — April 12, 2010 @ 7:21 pm

  10. Point taken, but you can’t just use batting average. Say Juan Pierre is a .300/.350 hitter, and McGwire is a .250/.400 hitter. McGwire would get hits in 25% of his ABs, but walk in 15% of all his PAs, which result in MORE ABs, for more chances to get hits.

    Now, this would still mean that a team of McGwires would average about 7.8 hits per game and a team of Pierres would average 8.5 (assuming a 27 out game with no DPs); but the point is still made that you can’t just use BA.

    Comment by Temo — April 12, 2010 @ 7:22 pm

  11. I always root for no hitters. I’m a Pirates fan and I remember a few years back Chris Young of the Padres needed two outs to get it (can’t recall exactly), and Joe Randa came off the bench and hit a HR. Needless to say, the Pirates still lost and some crappy benchwarmer who went on to retire the next season pretty much crushed his dreams.

    Comment by Pat — April 12, 2010 @ 8:30 pm

  12. Joseph, you’re a terrible person.

    Comment by AnotherFan — April 12, 2010 @ 8:37 pm

  13. You’re mixing AB’s and plate appearances… .250 is 25% per official AB and excludes at bats resulting in BB, so the # of times he walks is irrelevant if you are looking at batting average.

    In fact more walks might work against McGwire as it could result in more frequent GIDP’s and fewer official AB’s (this would be a very marginal effect)

    You need to rework you’re calculations….

    Comment by Joe — April 12, 2010 @ 9:41 pm

  14. Yea, I made a logical error there. Ignore my post.

    Comment by Temo — April 12, 2010 @ 10:29 pm

  15. I guess it depends on the score. If my team is losing, by, say, more than four, I would root for the pitcher. Otherwise, I think that my team could come back, and thus…Go Twins!

    Comment by Jeremy — April 12, 2010 @ 11:04 pm

  16. My earliest baseball memory is listening to Jim Bunning’s no-no on the radio in 1958. And then I watched Verlander’s on line a couple of years ago. But the most exciting for me was when I was in stands in Baltimore to see Mussina come within two outs of pitching a perfect game against the Indians. The O’s were never my team but I was pulling so hard for Moose that I nearly collapsed when Sandy Alomar got a single with one out in the 9th. IIRC, Mussina then struck out the last two batters. I hope that one hit doesn’t keep him out of the HOF. He was a class act.

    Comment by Keith — April 12, 2010 @ 11:04 pm

  17. Don’t forget when he took a perfect game into the 9th, with two outs against the Red Sox, in Fenway, only to have it broken up by PH Carl Everett on a fastball at the eyes.

    Comment by delv — April 13, 2010 @ 1:31 am

  18. There’s been some really great almost no-hitters in recent years too.

    CC recently

    Lackey v. his new team at Fenway

    Comment by ineedanap — April 13, 2010 @ 7:29 am

  19. I had more….

    Comment by ineedanap — April 13, 2010 @ 7:29 am

  20. Mussina would have had a better chance at getting Everett if it happened a few years later in his late 30’s, a time when he’d be considered a dinosaur by baseball standards. Everett wouldn’t be able to see him.

    Comment by Steve — April 13, 2010 @ 9:02 am

  21. I’m with Joseph. It’s embarrassing to get no hit. Along those same lines, I never understood why it was against the “unwritten rules” to bunt during a no-hitter.

    The team is TRYING to not get no hit. Bunting is a legitimate strategy to try to get a hit.

    The one I am thinking of involved Schilling and the Padres a few years back. Schilling was super chapped that the Padres bunted to break up his no hitter. But the kicker was that it was only a 1 or 2 run lead, which made bunting even more defensible. I don’t know, JMO.

    Comment by Steve — April 13, 2010 @ 9:11 am

  22. Dirty’s was the best, I don’t care what you say!

    Comment by B — April 13, 2010 @ 10:36 am

  23. Good read, except for the fact that Buehrle’s no-hitter was in Chicago, not in Arlington.

    Comment by Jake — April 13, 2010 @ 11:28 am

  24. Oops… will fix

    Comment by Matt Klaassen — April 13, 2010 @ 1:09 pm

  25. No offense, but you know Zambrano’s ‘neutral park’ no-no shouldn’t be ANY more penalized than any other pitcher who threw their No-No at home. Because, y’know, it’s the same damn thing.

    Comment by Doogolas — April 13, 2010 @ 1:12 pm

  26. I feel like Buehrle’s perfecto had so many different levels of difficulty that day that its insane. Start off with the fact that he is a contact pitcher, with a horrific defense playing behind him, against, as noted, a very good hitting team in the rays. Then add in the catch by Wise, coming in for the ninth cold as a defensive replacement, and it was a remarkable effort to say the least.

    Comment by Matt A. — April 13, 2010 @ 8:52 pm

  27. Before I’d ever been to a no-hitter I would’ve agreed with Max, because I’d never seen one start-to-finish (except in a minor league game in Lansing once about five years ago). But I was at Verlander’s no-hitter. Having now seen one, I NEVER EVER EVER want to see the Tigers no hit, at any point in my life. I can now only appreciate no hitters in neutral games and thrown by the Tigers.

    Comment by Larry Smith Jr. — April 13, 2010 @ 9:03 pm

  28. I’d hope not to see my team get no-hit, but then I’m a Cubs fan and I like that they have the longest running streak without having been no-hit.

    Comment by Perkins — April 15, 2010 @ 5:37 am

  29. I hate to say it, but wOBA just isn’t the stat to use when comparing the relative difficulty of getting no-hitters. XBH-hitting teams and singles-hitting teams can have very different wOBAs, but an XBH is the same as a single when you’re trying to throw a no-no. The best stat to use would be team BA.

    Comment by Neil A — May 6, 2011 @ 3:20 pm

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