Friday, July 10, 2009

Jonathan Sanchez Tosses No-Hitter

San Francisco Giants pitcher Jonathan Sanchez has struggled during the 2009 season. Going into tonight, Sanchez had a record of 2-8 with an ERA of 5.30. He had been demoted to the bullpen last month to work out his struggles. But tonight the 26-year-old southpaw was getting another chance to earn a spot in the starting rotation. It's a starting rotation that consists of reigning NL Cy Young winner Tim Lincecum and Matt Cain who have both been selected to the NL All Star Team. Let's also not forget 300 game winner Randy Johnson and Barry Zito who are also Cy Young winners.

Tonight Sanchez earned his spot in the starting rotation.

He threw a no-hitter against the San Diego Padres. The Giants won the game 8-0.

In fact, Sanchez had a perfect game into the 8th inning. However, third baseman Juan Uribe made an error on a ball hit by Chase Headley. However, rookie catcher Eli Whiteside deftly went to the mound to put Sanchez at ease. Headley would be the only base runner for the Padres in the game.

The toughest at bat for Sanchez was that of Edgar Gonzalez in the top of the 9th with one out. Gonzalez hit the ball deep into straight away center field. But Aaron Rowand never met a wall he didn't like and he made an amazing catch to preserve the no-no.

That left Everth Cabrera as the only thing standing between Sanchez and baseball immortality. Sanchez struck out Cabrera looking on a 2-2 slider. It was one of 11 strikeouts Sanchez recorded tonight. Jonathan Sanchez has etched his place in baseball history.

Sanchez's no-hitter also happened to be both his first major league complete game and shutout. He becomes the first Giants pitcher to toss a no-hitter since "The Count" John Montefusco did so in September 1976 against the Atlanta Braves. It is also the first no-hitter in MLB in 2009.

But perhaps most impressive of all was that he accomplished this in the presence of his father. Sanchez flew in his father from Puerto Rico to watch him pitch in the majors for the first time.

Needless to say neither Jonathan Sanchez nor his father will ever forget this day.

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