Independent leaguer plays all nine positions in a game

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It’s kind of a boring day, news-wise. Bobby Valentine hasn’t done anything yet. That massive fight with all of the Stevie Nicks fans I got myself into on Twitter is starting to peter out (long story).  So, yeah, I’m scanning for something to write about.

Thank goodness for the independent leagues:

Kenny[Held]  thought it would be fun on the last day of the season to play all nine positions on the field, since it was the last game of the season.

He changed positions every inning saving the ninth inning to pitch, where he pitched two strike-outs and the ball was clocked at 93 mph in the three up, three down inning to finish the game with an 8-2 AirHog win.

The writer has an interview up with Held at his site. The independent leagues are great because everyone can just have fun, ya know?

Now if you’ll excuse me, there are 100 angry women dressed in black and doing weird little twirly dance moves at my front door. Wonder what they want …

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.