The St. Louis Browns threw an 8 1/2-inning Spring Training no-hitter against the Boston Braves but lost, 72 years ago today.
On March 4, 1947, at Fort Lauderdale’s Westside Park,, the Browns’ Jim Bilbrey tossed three innings of no-hit ball against the Boston Braves before turning the ball over to Sam Zoldak for the fourth. Zoldak gave up two runs in the fourth on a pair of walks, an error, a bases-loaded fielder’s choice and a sacrifice fly.
Zoldak held the Braves runless and hitless through the fifth, sixth and seventh innings, as the Browns pulled within one on a sixth-inning RBI double by Bob Dillinger. Zoldak handed the ball to Mulbrey Sanford for the eighth and Sanford did his job, but the Browns couldn’t plate a runner in the top of the ninth inning and lost 2-1.
The game appears to be the only no-hit loss in Spring Training history. (See our full list of Spring Training no-hitters).
Because the Braves didn’t have to bat in the ninth, this would not be considered a no-hitter under the 1991 definition clarification. These “No-hitters lost by the away team in which the game ended after 8 1/2 innings” feats are super rare, as there have only been four regular-season examples over the majors’ 130-plus-year history.