Monday, September 30, 2013

I See Your Henderson Alvarez And I Raise You One Yutaka Enatsu

In case you missed it, yesterday Henderson Alvarez threw a no-hitter for the Marlins against the Tigers.  What was significant about this was that the Marlins were held scoreless through the first eight innings themselves so when Alvarez left the mound after the top of the ninth with his no-hitter intact, he didn't know if he was going to have to keep pitching more innings.  Luckily for him, the Marlins scored a run (on a wild pitch!) in the bottom of the ninth so he had a run-of-the-mill nine inning no-hitter albeit a walk-off one.

Something similar happened 40 years ago in Japan but it was even more crazy.  Yutaka Enatsu of the Hanshin Tigers took on the Chunichi Dragons at Koshien Stadium on August 30, 1973.  He took a no-hitter through nine innings, but the Tigers were unable to score a run against the Dragons starter Yukitsura Matsumoto (I think) so the game went into extra innings.  After pitching two more no-hit innings, Enatsu was able to end the game by hitting a Sayonara home run in the bottom of the eleventh for a 1-0 Tigers win.  Talk about taking matters into your own hands.

Here's the front and back of the card for this game from last year's No-Hitter set from BBM (#57):

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