Ervin Santana’s 1 Run No-No

Posted: July 27, 2011 in MLB
Tags: , , , , , , ,

1 Run – 0 Hits

That’s what the scoreboard at Progressive Field in Cleveland read earlier today.  Ervin Santana threw the first ever no-hitter at the Prog (formerly Jacob’s Field), but he allowed one unearned run off of a passed ball in the first inning.  Despite being down for the first 4+ innings, Santana blew away the Indians hitters by striking out 10 and only walking one.  But the question remains, does this one run taint the no-no?

Ervin Santana
Ervin Santana getting the traditional Gatorade bath

To answer this question, you first have to look at some statistics.  For one, Santana only faced 29 batters, just two over the minimum.  The reason for this is that Santana was able to maintain composure after the early run, only walking one batter in the remaining eight innings.  Next, Santana’s ground ball to fly ball ratio was 12-5.  This means he earned the no-hitter, it wasn’t just his defence making great plays.  For a comparison, the Indians combined GB-FB ration was 4-14.  Finally, Santana recorded the highest game score (see formula below) of the season for a pitcher with 94.  So according to the statistics, Santana pitched the best game that has been pitched this season.

The last time that a run was allowed in a no-hitter was almost 18 years ago when Darryl Kile of the Houston Astros beat the Mets 7-1.  Santana was only 10 years old at the time.  When Kile threw his no-no, the article in the following morning’s edition of The Deseret News did not focus on the one run.  It instead focused on Kile pitching the game of his life only five days after the passing of his father.

Although Santana (to my knowledge) does not have a story like that, I would expect the Los Angelas Times to report on the fact that Santana had only one walk.  Or maybe that he took a no-hit bid into the sixth inning against Baltimore in his last start.

Lastly, the pitch that Ezequiel Carrera scored on was a passed ball, not a wild pitch.  It was actually a strike, but back-up catcher Bobby Wilson couldn’t hold on to it.  Had it been a wild pitch seven feet over Wilson’s head, then maybe the no-hitter would be marked with an asterisk.  But Santana pitched the game of his life.  This no-hitter shouldn’t be tainted for him because of a young catcher’s mistake.  So congrats to Ervin Santana on the third no-hitter of this season!

Formula: 50 + 1*Outs + 2*IP after the 4th + 1*K – 2*H – 4*ER – 2*UnearnedRuns – 1*BB (ESPN)

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