Major League Baseball’s best 12-inning pitching performance occurred 59 years ago today.
On May 26, 1959, in Harvey Haddix’s first season with the Pittsburgh Pirates, the Medway, Ohio southpaw retired 36 Milwaukee Braves batters for a perfect game through 12 innings, but his team couldn’t score. Haddix lost the perfect game when Don Hoak threw a routine grounder in the dirt, then lost the no-hitter and the game when Joe Adcock launched a ball over the right-center field fence.
Haddix was later immortalized by The Baseball Project, which asks in its chrous, “Why don’t we add ‘ol Harvey to the list?”
Just three years before Haddix’s gem, three Cincinnati Reds pitchers combined for 9⅔ innings of no-hit ball during an 11-inning loss to the Milwaukee Braves. Johnny Klippstein (7 inn.), Hersch Freeman (1 inn.), Joe Black (2⅓ inn.) were no-hitting the Braves at Milwaukee County Stadium before Black gave up a Jack Dittmer double with one out in 10th. He allowed two more hits in the 11th for a walkoff loss.