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Monday, July 26, 2010
Matt Garza pitches season’s 5th no-hitter

By ESPN Stats & Info

Rays 5, Tigers 0
Matt Garza throws the first no-hitter in Rays history (leaving the Mets and Padres as the only active MLB franchises without a no-hitter) and the fifth no-hitter in MLB this season. The five no-hitters are the most in a season since 1991, when there were an all-time record seven no-nos. Garza faced the minimum 27 batters, becoming the sixth pitcher since 1954 to throw a no-hitter (not a perfect game) while facing the minimum. Garza had previously thrown a one-hitter in 2008, when he took a no-hitter into the seventh inning before losing it on a solo home run to Hanley Ramirez. Garza is the first-ever pitcher named Matt to throw a no-hitter. This is the first no-hitter ever thrown on July 26 of a season. The Rays' Matt Joyce hit a grand slam to break up Max Scherzer's no-hit bid in the sixth inning. It was Joyce's second grand slam of the season. The Tigers were no-hit for the first time since June 1990, when Randy Johnson (then a Mariner) did it to them. Their 19-year streak since then had been the longest no-hit streak among AL teams until Garza snapped it.

•The first no-hitter in Rays franchise history leaves only the Mets (established in 1962) and the Padres (1969) as the two current franchises not to toss one.

•The Tigers were last no-hit by Randy Johnson on June 2, 1990.

•The Oakland A's now have the longest streak without being no-hit at 19 seasons (AL teams only). The Tigers were at 19 before Monday night.

•There have been five no-hitters this season. The last season with more was 1991, when there were seven, matching the record-setting total in 1990.

•It's worth noting that the Rays entered Monday with the majors' best defense, according to two advanced defensive metrics. They had a defensive efficiency of .709, which means that they had converted 70.9 percent of all balls in play into outs, the highest rate in the majors. They had a plus-minus rating of +58, which estimates the number of plays above/below average made compared with the average fielder, also the highest in MLB.

•There had never been a no-hitter on July 26 prior to Monday.

•No pitcher named Matt or Max had ever thrown a no-hitter before Garza.

•From Elias Sports Bureau: The last team to be on the winning side of a no-hitter with as few as three hits: The 1988 Reds had three in a 1-0 win over the Dodgers in Tom Browning's perfect game.

Matt Garza threw 99 fastballs out of his 120 total pitches. He got 22 of his 27 outs with the fastball (including a 2nd-inning double play).

•This was the second no-hitter at Tropicana Field this year; Qualcomm Stadium in 2001 was the last ballpark to host two no-hitters.

•FROM ELIAS SPORTS BUREAU: The Rays became the most recent team to be no-hit and throw a no-hitter in the same season; it happened three times in 1991, to the Orioles, White Sox and Expos.

•FROM ELIAS SPORTS BUREAU: The Rays are the third team to be involved in three no-hitters in a single season. The other two are the 1917 White Sox and the 1917 Browns (all three of those games were between the White Sox and Browns).

•Home plate ump Ed Hickox had never had the plate for a no-hitter.

•Matt Joyce hit the grand slam to break up Max Scherzer's no-hitter in the sixth. So this is the second time this year that a guy with the last name of Joyce "broke up" a no-hitter by the Tigers (after the fourth inning). Umpire Jim Joyce made the wrong call in Armando Galarraga's no-hit bid in June.

•More people are expected to see Penn State play FCS school Youngstown State on Sept. 4 (110,000+) than have seen the first FIVE no-hitters thrown in the major leagues this season (105,843).

How Rays starter Matt Garza no-hit the Tigers:
Challenged hitters:
- 82.5 pct fastballs (most in a start this season)
- 73.9 pct fastballs (season high) and 10.9 pct curveballs (season low) in 2-strike counts
- 49.5 pct of fastballs up in the zone (42.9 pct in starts entering Monday)
- 44.2 pct of pitches up in the zone (2nd-most in a start this season)
- 8 swings-and-misses up in the zone, 7 of them with his fastball (both season highs)
- 5 of those misses came on fastballs out of the zone (most in a start this season; had just 7 in his last 7 starts combined)
- Hitters chased 35.7 pct of fastballs up out of the strike zone (25.0 pct in starts entering Monday)