May 1-Turnabout is fair play

1969  –  CINCINNATI, OHIO  –   Cincinnati Red‘s Johnny Vander Meer throwing consecutive  no hitters in 1938 is a fairly well-known bit of baseball trivia. How about this one also involving Cincinnati? On April 30, 1969 Cincinnati Reds pitcher Jim Maloney no-hit the Houston Astros 10 to nothing. The next day, May 1, 1969 the Astros’ Don Wilson no-hit the Reds 4-0. What are the odds?

No-hitters are significant accomplishments, but they aren’t unheard of. There have been over 300 in the modern era — since 1901. That’s almost two per season.

Here are a few rarer events than a no-hitter:

  • Two no-hitters on the same day – June 29, 1990. Dave Stewart of the Oakland A’s no-hit the Toronto Blue Jays. A couple hours later the DodgersFernando Valenzuela no-hit the St. Louis Cardinals.
  • In 1959, Harvey Haddix of the Pittsburgh Pirates not only had a no-hitter for 12 innings, he had a perfect game. He lost the perfecto, the no-hitter and the game in the 13th inning. [Look for story May 26th]
  • In 1990 Andy Hawkins of the New York Yankees pitched a no-hitter and lost 4-0 when the Chicago White Sox took advantage of Yankee errors. Initially Hawkins got credit for a no-hitter. Later Major League Baseball changed the criteria and took away Hawkins’ no-hitter because it didn’t go a full 9 innings. It only went 8 and a half because the home team White Sox were ahead and didn’t bat in the ninth.

CONTRIBUTING SOURCES:
Cincinnati Enquirer, Cincinnati, Ohio, May 2, 1969
Retrosheet’s no-hitters and stuff