Mariners third baseman Kyle Seager made an incredible catch in foul territory for the first out of the ninth inning. It seems like every no-hitter or perfect game has a signature, standout defensively play.
Mariners right-hander Hisashi Iwakuma has just completed the fourth no-hitter of the 2015 season.
The Japanese starter walked three batters but struck out seven in a historical 116-pitch effort as the Mariners defeated the visiting Orioles 3-0 on Wednesday afternoon at Seattle’s Safeco Field.
Iwakuma joins Randy Johnson, Chris Bosio, and Felix Hernandez as the only Mariners starters to throw a no-no. Kevin Millwood and five relievers also combined for a no-hitter against the Dodgers in 2012.
Iwakuma was thought to be a trade candidate at the July 31 deadline, but the Mariners opted to keep the 34-year-old impending free agent and he rewarded them Wednesday by stirring up one of the loudest home crowds Safeco Field has heard this season. It’s been a disappointing summer overall for the M’s, who carried postseason expectations after an active winter but stand 54-61 even after Wednesday’s victory.
Iwakuma has also breathed some much-needed life into his open-market value. He had a stellar 3.07 in 524 innings between 2012-2014 but entered his start Wednesday with a 4.41 ERA in 63 1/3 frames.
Those nine scoreless innings have pushed his season ERA down to 3.86.
The no-hitter was also Iwakuma’s first career complete game.
Right-hander Brandon Maurer has been one of the biggest bright spots for the Padres this season, emerging as a quality setup man after they acquired him from the Mariners for outfielder Seth Smith.
However, after posting a 2.11 ERA in the first half Maurer has struggled in the second half and now he’s been placed on the disabled list with shoulder inflammation.
General manager A.J. Preller told Dennis Lin of the San Diego Union Tribune that the Padres expect the injury to be a minor one and “just want to give him a two-week breather and have him finish the year strong.”
Maurer, who struggled as a starter for the Mariners, has a 3.00 ERA and 39/15 K/BB ratio in 51 innings overall this season and seven of the 17 earned runs he’s allowed all year have come in the past two weeks.