Roy Halladay throws second ever postseason no-hitter

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As close to perfection as one can come without actually getting there.
Roy Halladay, already with a perfect game to his credit in the 2010 regular season, dominated the Reds in Tuesday’s Game 1, throwing just the second no-hitter in postseason history. The only baserunner to reach against him was Jay Bruce, doing so on a walk with two outs in the fifth inning. Halladay retired the other 27 batters he faced to join Don Larsen as the only pitchers to throw no-hitters in the postseason.
Larsen, of course, threw a perfect game for the Yankees against the Dodgers in Game 5 of the 1956 World Series.
Halladay was the first in many years to even threaten an October no-hitter. The last pitcher to go seven hitless was Jim Lonborg for the Red Sox in 1967. He pitched 7 2/3 hitless innings on his way to a one-hit shutout of the Cardinals in the World Series.
With Halladay making it clear right away that he was on tonight, this one seemed over as soon as the Phillies scored three times against Edinson Volquez to make it a 4-0 game in the second inning. That the Phillies never added another run — they managed just one hit after the second inning — has to be of a little concern.
Still, the Phillies are in a commanding position right now. The Reds must be thinking that coming back and winning Game 4 is a long shot, leaving them with no margin for error in Games 2 and 3 against Roy Oswalt and Cole Hamels. Oswalt and Bronson Arroyo will duel Friday.

Mike Trout has a torn thumb ligament, could require surgery

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Yesterday Mike Trout left the Marlins-Angels game after hurting his thumb while sliding head first into second base. After the game the Angels talked about it as if it were just a sprain. Trout had an MRI today, however, and the diagnosis is far worse: he has a torn thumb ligament.

While a treatment option has not yet been chosen, surgery is a possibility. A certainty is that he’ll miss, at the very least, several weeks of play. He has been placed on the disabled list for the first time in his career.

Trout, the reigning AL MVP and, without question, the best player in baseball, is batting .337/.461/.742 with 16 home runs, 36 RBI, 36 runs scored, and 10 stolen bases in 206 plate appearances this season. Even with the one of the weaker supporting casts in baseball, Trout had the Angels near .500 and in at least arguable contention in the AL West.

Without him, they are likely sunk. Without him, baseball is worse off.

Basebrawl! Harper, Strickland punch away, Nats-Giants fight

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SAN FRANCISCO — Nationals slugger Bryce Harper and San Francisco reliever Hunter Strickland both landed punches to the head during a wild brawl that erupted Monday after a hit by pitch.

Harper was hit in the right hip by Strickland’s 98 mph fastball in the eighth inning with Washington ahead 2-0.

Harper pointed the bat toward Strickland, charged the mound and fired his batting helmet wide of the pitcher. They started to swing away and they each connected as the benches and bullpens emptied.

At least two Giants players forcefully dragged Strickland from the middle of the brawl all the way into the dugout. Harper and Strickland were both ejected.

In the 2014 NL Division Series, Harper hit two home runs off Strickland. After the star’s second shot, in Game 4, he stared at Strickland as he rounded the bases.