Homer Bailey racks up another no-hitter
Homer Bailey threw his second no-hitter in 10 months and the first in MLB this season. Thanks to Homer Baily pitching, the Cincinnati Reds posted a 3-0 win over the San Francisco Giants Tuesday.
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"That would have been a sad way to lose a no-hitter," Baker said.Skip to next paragraph
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Instead, Votto saw Blanco break for third and threw him out.
"Joey had a great heads-up play. I was almost a little late getting to the bag," Bailey said.
Two innings later, Bailey finished it off so smoothly. He jumped to glove Brandon Crawford's high comebacker, struck out Tony Abreu and retired Blanco on a grounder to third baseman Todd Frazier.
Then, he raised his arms in celebration, just as he did in Pittsburgh only 10 months earlier.
Been there, done that.
"It's something I've already done, so I knew what to expect," Bailey said of his easy-as-could-be step into rare territory.
Votto had a sacrifice fly, and Brandon Phillips hit a two-run homer off Tim Lincecum (4-9), who has lost his last six road decisions. That was all the help that Bailey needed on this night — one walk, nine strikeouts, no hits in a tidy 102 pitches.
"He had his inner Batman out today," Phillips said.
Bailey got his nickname because teammates think he resembles actor Christian Bale, who played Batman on the big screen. The Giants didn't put up much of a fight as they fell a season-low five games under .500.
"It was a pretty easy no-hitter," Giants manager Bruce Bochy said. "We didn't hit too many balls hard. There weren't any tough plays. We only hit a couple balls decent. He was really overmatching us all night."
It wasn't that way earlier in his career. The prep star was a first-round pick — seventh overall — in June 2004. He dominated in the minors with his 97 mph fastball. When he was called up for the first time in 2007, he drove past a billboard on the interstate outside of Cincinnati featuring a picture of him holding a flaming baseball.
He didn't meet those grandiose expectations at first, but the 27-year-old finally emerged last season, winning a career-high 13 games — including the no-hitter.
"He's grown up a lot," Baker said. "That's what you like to see out of a young player. If you stick with them long enough, you can see the fruits of their success."
It was the 16th no-hitter in Cincinnati history. No Reds pitcher had thrown a no-no at home since Tom Browning's 1-0 perfect game against the Dodgers at Riverfront Stadium on Sept. 16, 1988.
Bailey became the third pitcher in the history of baseball's first professional franchise to get more than one. Johnny Vander Meer threw the only back-to-back no-hitters in major league history in 1938, beating the Boston Braves and Brooklyn Dodgers. Jim Maloney had a no-hitter at Wrigley Field in 1965 and one at home against Houston in 1969.
During spring training in Arizona this year, Votto — the 2010 National League MVP — set the bar even higher for Bailey.
"I was talking to Joey Votto during spring training and he said, 'Can you throw another (no) hitter?' I said, 'Can you win another MVP?'" Bailey said. "He said, 'Yes.' I said, 'So can I.'
"I was joking."
NOTES: The Giants were no-hit for the 16th time. The last three pitchers to hold them hitless were all named Kevin — LA's Gross in 1992, Florida's Brown in 1997 and Philadelphia's Millwood in 2003. ... Bailey became the 31st pitcher to throw at least two no-hitters. ... Justin Verlander, Mark Buehrle and Roy Halladay are the only other active pitchers with a pair of no-hitters. Halladay threw one of his in the postseason against the Reds in 2010.
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Copyright 2013 The Associated Press.
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