“Smokey” Joe Williams tossed a Negro Leagues no-hitter for the New York Lincoln Giants, 98 years ago today.
On May 4, 1919, during the first game of a Sunday doubleheader, Williams no-hit the Brooklyn Royal Giants for a 1-0 victory. The hard throwing righty from Seguin, Texas, who also took on the nickname “Cyclone” Joe, also served as the Lincoln Giants’ player/manager from 1914-1923.
Williams was widely consider the best pitcher of his day. He was inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 1999.
Ken Johnson threw a no-hitter and lost, 53 years ago today.
It was April 23, 1964, and the Houston Colt .45’s were playing the Cincinnati Reds at Colt Stadium. The game was deadlocked at 0.
The Reds clawed for a run on a ninth-inning bunt attempt by Pete Rose in which Johnson threw the ball into the outfield (it apparently wasn’t taboo to bunt to break up a no-no back then). After Rose advanced to third on a ground out, Vada Pinson stepped to the plate and hit a routine two-out grounder to second that was booted by Nellie Fox, allowing Rose to score.
The game remains the only nine-inning no-hitter lost by a single pitcher. The Orioles tandem of Steve Barber and Stu Miller duplicated the feat three years later.
I interviewed Johnson in 2014 and he seemed touched that someone still wanted to talk at length about that game.
“I can’t believe anyone still remembers,” Johnson said.
Ted Breitenstein and Jim Jay Hughes threw no-hitters on the same day, 119 years ago today.
Ted Breitenstein, who pitched for the Cincinnati Reds, no-hit the Pittsburgh Pirates at Cincinnati’s League Park on Friday, April 22, 1898. That same day, Jim Jay Hughes, of the National League Baltimore Orioles, no-hit the Boston Beaneaters.
The feat wasn’t duplicated until 1991, when the Oakland Athletics’ Dave Stewart and the Los Angeles Dodgers’ Fernando Valenzuela threw same-day no-nos.
Today marks a full 365 calendar days since the last Major League Baseball no-hitter.
On April 21, 2016, the Chicago Cubs’ Jake Arrieta no-hit the Cincinnati Reds on Thursday night, less than eight months after throwing one against the Los Angeles Dodgers.
Arrieta walked four and struck out six as the Cubs beat the Cincinnati Reds 16-0 at Great American Ballpark. Arrieta’s previous no-no was on August 30, 2015, when he no-hit the Dodgers for a 2-0 win at Dodger Stadium.
The Reds had last been no-hit on Wednesday, October 6, 2010, when the Philadelphia Phillies’ Roy Halladay no-hit Cincinnati during the opening game of the NLDS. To find the last regular season no-hitter against the Reds, you had to go back more than 44 years. On Wednesday, June 23, 1971, the Phillies’ Rick Wise no-hit the Reds for a 4-0 win at Riverfront Stadium.
John Goodgame threw a Negro Leagues no-hitter for the West Baden Sprudels, 106 years ago today.
On Friday, April 21, 1911, Goodgame no-hit the French Lick Plutos in West Baden, Indiana, for a 3-0 win. The website Agate Type: Reconstructing Negro League & Latin Baseball History dug up a short Indianapolis Freeman write-up about the game, showing that Goodgame, a new recruit out of Talladega College, struck out 11 and walked just one.
The Cleveland Naps’ (Indians’) Addie Joss threw the second of his two no-hitters 107 years ago today.
On Wednesday, April 20, 1910, Joss no-hit the Chicago White Sox for a 1-0 victory at South Side Park.
It was his second no-no against Chicago. On Friday, October 2, 1908, Joss threw a perfect game against the White Sox at home at League Park.
With the pair of gems, Joss became the first person to throw two no-hitters against the same team. The San Francisco Giants’ Tim Lincecum duplicated the feat in 2013 and 2014, no-hitting the San Diego Padres in each.)