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Sunday, July 31, 2011
Verlander flirts, again, with a no-hitter


The Detroit Tigers' Justin Verlander had his bid for a third career no-hitter -- and second this season -- broken up with two outs in the eighth inning by the Los Angeles Angels' Maicer Izturis. (More on him later.)
Justin Verlander
Verlander

There now have been 11 no-hit bids of at least 7 innings this season by a starting pitcher, and Verlander has three of them.

After giving up two runs in the eighth, Verlander left having given up just one hit. Despite two career no-hitters, Verlander has never thrown a one-hitter.

Izturis -- who broke up the no-hitter with a single to left field -- is now 11-for-26 (.423) in his career against Verlander. That’s the second-highest batting against Verlander among batters with 20 plate appearances against him.

Jose Valverde pitched the ninth for his 28th save in as many chances. Dating to last season, Valverde has converted 30 straight saves, two shy of the franchise record set by Willie Hernandez in 1984. (Hernandez won both the American League Cy Young and MVP in 1984.)

Only five pitchers in history have thrown at least three no-hitters. The last pitcher to throw two regular-season no-hitters in the same season? Nolan Ryan in 1973. Roy Halladay threw two no-hitters last season, but one came in the postseason.