Francisco Liriano faces Tigers in no-hitter followup

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After being pushed back a day because of a sore throat, Francisco Liriano gets Detroit tonight in his first start since throwing his no-hitter against the White Sox a week ago.

The extra rest figures to do his arm some good, as he blew away his previous season high by throwing 123 pitches in his first career complete game.  He didn’t throw more than 97 pitches in any of his previous five starts this season.

As Liriano tries to match Johnny Vander Meer with consecutive no-nos — the typical bid never seems to last past the second inning — he’ll be facing a team he’s 4-4 with a 4.79 ERA against in 12 starts and four relief appearances.  It’ll be his first outing against Detroit this year.

Here’s a possible Tigers lineup and how each hitter has fared against him:

CF Austin Jackson: 3-for-11, .273/.429/.364
2B Scott Sizemore: 2-for-5, .400/.400/.600
DH Magglio Ordonez: 10-for-26, .385/.407/.731
1B Miguel Cabrera: 7-for-20, .350/.391/.800
C Victor Martinez: 8-for-18, .444/.474/.722
RF Brennan Boesch: 3-for-6, .500/.667/.667
LF Ryan Raburn: 4-for-15, .267/.353/.467
SS Jhonny Peralta: 7-for-24, .292/.414/.417
3B Brandon Inge: 4-for-31, .129/.156/.226

Alternatively, the Tigers could go with the left-handed-hitting Alex Avila behind the plate and sit either Boesch or Raburn. Avila has never faced Liriano.

As much success as the heart of the Tigers order has had against Liriano, the southpaw might be fortunate just to put together another quality start tonight. He had only one in five outings prior to the no-hitter.

Sean Manaea pitches first no-hitter of 2018

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Athletics southpaw Sean Manaea delivered his first career no-hitter against the Red Sox in a decisive 3-0 victory on Saturday night. Any thought of a perfect game was banished in the first at-bat, when Mookie Betts drew a leadoff six-pitch walk to open the first inning. From there, Manaea was nearly flawless, holding the Sox to four total baserunners and striking out 10 of 30 batters faced — a career record.

Manaea was gifted a three-run lead thanks to RBI doubles from Jed Lowrie and Stephen Piscotty and Marcus Semien‘s solo shot off of Chris Sale in the fifth inning. While the Red Sox managed to draw two walks off of Manaea, they didn’t come anywhere close to plating a run. Andrew Benintendi tried to break up the no-no in the sixth inning with an infield hit down the first base line, but strayed out of bounds and later saw his hit reversed on a call of batter interference.

Entering the ninth inning, the 26-year-old lefty was sitting at just 95 pitches through eight frames of no-hit ball. He quickly deposed Blake Swihart and Mookie Betts with a groundout and fly out, then walked Benintendi on seven pitches. Any threat the Red Sox might have posed was soon eliminated, however, as Hanley Ramirez ground into a force out to complete the no-hitter.

Manaea is the first A’s pitcher to toss a no-no since Dallas Braden’s perfect game against the Rays eight years ago. The last time the Red Sox were on the losing end of a no-hitter was also against an AL West rival, when the Mariners’ Chris Bosio clinched a 2-0 no-no on April 22, 1993. Manaea’s feat is even more outstanding given how dominant the Red Sox have looked this season: prior to Saturday’s defeat, they boasted a 17-2 record and had yet to be shut out during the regular season.