Forty-five years ago yesterday, on Sept. 2, 1972, the Chicago Cubs’ Milt Pappas no-hit the San Diego Padres at Wrigley Field, becoming the only pitcher in MLB history to lose a perfect game by walking the 27th batter but still get a no-hitter (two others did it on hit batsmen).
Pappas retired the first 26 Padres he faced and was one out away from a perfect game with a 3-2 count on pinch-hitter Larry Stahl when home plate umpire Bruce Froemming called a ball to issue the base on balls. Pappas started yelling at Froemming and nearly got kicked out of the game.
“I’ve got a call, and I’m not a fan. I’m an umpire,” Froemming told the MLB Network’s Bob Costas.
Pappas managed to get pinch-hitter Garry Jestadt to pop out to second to complete the no-no, an 8-0 victory.
A few of years ago I interviewed Pappas, who passed away in April 2016, and he was still upset with umpire Bruce Froemming for not giving him calls on the final batter to give him the perfecto. Pappas told me that people still came up to him to talk about that game.
“I’m still being recognized and still going out and signing autographs, and I’m wondering to myself on numerous occasions, ‘If I would have done the perfect game, would I be getting this kind of adulation?” he asked. “I wouldn’t have had the 40 years of ‘Man, you got screwed’ and ‘Who’s that umpire that called that?’”
Edwin Jackson nearly made San Diego Padres history in his first start for the club, one year ago today.
Jackson, who threw a no-hitter for the Arizona Diamondbacks in 2010, took a no-no against the San Francisco Giants into the seventh inning on July 17, 2016, before losing it on a Conor Gillaspie three-run homer. Jackson walked five batters in the contest before serving up the dinger.
Six years earlier, the German-born journeyman pitcher needed 149 pitches to no-hit the Tampa Bay Rays for a 1-0 victory at Tropicana Field. The 26-year-old right-hander told Diamondbacks manager A.J. Hinch that it would take a hit to get him off the mound, and he completed the no-no by retiring Jason Bartlett on a groundout on pitch No. 149. We added him to our No-hitters … before they were Padres page.
Jackson’s effort marked the Padres deepest no-hit effort since May 5, 2016, when Colin Rea went 6⅔ innings against the New York Mets. That bid was ended by Yoenis Céspedes, who singled during a shift to the exact spot where the second baseman is normally stationed with two outs in the 7th inning.
The San Francisco Giants’ Tim Lincecum no-hit the San Diego Padres for the second time in less than a year, two years ago today.
Lincecum allowed just one baserunner, walking Chase Headley in the second. He retired the next 23 batters to complete the task at AT&T Park with a 4-0 victory. The only other major league pitcher to throw no-hitters against the same team is the Cleveland Naps’ Addie Joss, who tossed no-nos against the Chicago White Sox on Oct. 2, 1908 and April 20, 1910.
On July 13, 2013, Lincecum struck out 13 Padres hitters at Petco Park but needed a 148th pitch to get Yonder Alonso to fly out to left and complete the 9-0 no-hitter. His no-no pitch count is just one shy of the record since Major League Baseball began tracking such things in 1988. Third-baseman Pablo Sandoval contributed to the effort with a seventh-inning backhand grab on a sharp grounder and Hunter Pence helped with a diving eighth-inning catch.
Lincecum’s 2013 no-hitter was Petco Park’s first.
Meanwhile, the Padres remain the only major league team with no no-no, 7,727 games and counting.
St. Louis Cardinals rookie Bud Smith no-hit the San Diego Padres, 15 years ago today.
Smith, appearing in just his 13th major league game on Monday, September 3, 2001, struck out seven and walked four while holding the Padres hitless at Qualcomm Stadium en route to a 4-0 win. Smith threw 134 pitches during the game, and his Cardinals career wound up being short, and he pitched his last major league ballgame in July 2002.
Also throwing a no-hitter on this date is the Philadelphia Athletics’ Bill McCahan. At Philadelphia’s Shibe Park on Wednesday, September 3, 1947, McCahan no-hit the Washington Senators for 3-0 win.
The San Diego Padres’ Leron Lee killed Tom Seaver’s chance of throwing the first New York Mets’ no-hitter in the ninth inning, 44 years ago today.
Seaver took a no-hitter into the ninth inning at Shea Stadium on July 4, 1972, although he walked two batters in the fourth and two batters in the eighth, so the perfect game was off the board.
Seaver took the mound in the ninth and got Dave Roberts to ground out before Leron Lee lined a ball up the middle to end the no-no bid. He then got Nate Colbert to ground into a 6-4-3 double play to end the game for a 2-0 complete-game shutout, Seaver’s fourth career one-hitter.
Seaver struck out 11 batters, and the Mets scored their only runs with two outs in the third when Jim Fregosi and Ed Kranepool drew bases-loaded walks from the Padres’ Clay Kirby.
It was the Mets’ ninth one-hitter and it marked the team’s 1,692nd game without a no-hitter. On the other side, Kirby lost his no-hitter on Wayne Garrett’s first-inning single to move the Padres’ count to 556 games.
The Mets count ended at 8,019; the Padres count is at 7,572 games and still growing.
The California Angels’ Clyde Wright tossed a no-no 46 years ago today, but July 3 is also a big day San Diego no no-no history with three Padres pitchers taking no-hitters into the eighth inning.
On this day in 1975, Randy Jones took a perfect game into the eighth against the Cincinnati Reds but lost it when shortstop Hector Torres fielded a Tony Perez grounder and threw the ball into the stands for an error. Jones got George Foster to ground out to keep the no-no active through 7⅓, but said goodbye to that potential feat on a Bill Plummer double. He had to settle for his second one-hitter, with the earlier one coming in May of the same year.
On July 3, 1994, Andy Benes took a no-hitter into the eighth inning against the New York Mets but lost it on a Rico Brogna lead-off double. He held on for the one-hit complete game 7-0 shutout.
And on this day in 2004, the Padres’ Adam Eaton held the Kansas City Royals hitless for seven innings and had a 4-0 lead when Dee Brown lead off the eighth with a double to left. Eaton and reliever Akinori Otsuka wound up yielding three hits as Kansas City tied the game, but the Padres scored a run in the bottom of the eighth and held on for a 5-4 victory.
There has been just one major league no-hitter on this date. On July 3, 1970, Wright tossed a no-hitter against the Oakland Athletics in a 4-0 win at Anaheim Stadium.
Bruce Hurst, who threw two one-hitters for the no-no-less San Diego Padres, joined the Friars 27 years ago today.
Hurst, a free agent who spent his first nine seasons with the Boston Red Sox, signed with the Padres on this date in 1988.
At Jack Murphy Stadium on April 10, 1989, Hurst threw a complete-game one-hitter against the Atlanta Braves for a 5-2 win. He struck out 13 and walked just one (opposing pitcher Pete Smith in the third inning) but Lonnie Smith tagged Hurst with a two-run homer to left to score both of the Smiths.
Hurst reached the sixth inning with a no-no intact at the Murph on May 18, 1992, before the New York Mets’ Chico Walker killed it with a single to short. The Padres won that contest 3-0.
Knuckleballer Phil Niekro threw the Braves’ first no-hitter after the club’s move to Atlanta, 42 years ago today.
Sticking with his trademark knuckler from the seventh inning on, Niekro no-hit the San Diego Padres for a 9-0 win at Atlanta-Fulton County Stadium on Sunday, August 5, 1973. Niekro had been mixing in fastballs and sliders in the earlier innings.
Five Padres reached base during the game, three on walks and two on errors.
Four years ago today, on July 10, 2011, the San Diego Padres nearly left the Mets alone in the notoriety of being the only major league franchise without a no-hitter.
Padres pitchers on that day had been no-hitting the Los Angeles Dodgers through eight innings, with starter Aaron Harang making it through six and Josh Spence, Chad Qualls and Mike Adams each pitching a hitless inning. But the Dodgers’ Juan Uribe broke up San Diego’s no-hitter with a two-out double against Luke Gregorson in the ninth inning, and the Dodgers wound up winning the game 1-0.
Until Johan Santana’s achievement for the New York Mets in June 2012, the Mets had gone without a no-no since 1962, while the Padres have been at it since 1969. The Rockies and Rays were also in the no no-hitter club at the start of the 2010 season but broke free with gems by Ubaldo Jimenez and Matt Garza that year.
And so the quest for the first Padres’ no-hitter continues, with the no no-no count reaching 7,415 games.
Forty-six years ago today, Padres Opening Day starter Dick Selma gave up a leadoff single to the Houston Astros’ Jesus Alou to begin the San Diego Padres no no-hitters count.
Earlier that day, on April 8, 1969, the New York Mets’ no no-hitters count reached 1,137 when Bob Bailey of the Montreal Expos tagged Tom Seaver for a first-inning RBI double. The Mets’ count would climb to 8,019 games over that franchise’s 50-year history before finally halting on June 1, 2012, with Johan Santana’s no-no.
The Padres count, currently at 7,330 games, continues to climb.