Padres right-hander Aaron Harang returned from the disabled list with a bang on Saturday, hurling six innings of no-hit ball against the Dodgers.
It was a bit surprising to see San Diego left-hander Josh Spence take the mound in the seventh inning with Harang’s no-hitter still intact and his pitch count still hovering at 95, but there’s little doubt that it was the correct baseball decision.
Harang hadn’t appeared in a major league game since June 9 and pitched only four innings Monday evening in his final minor league rehab start with Single-A Lake Elsinore. On top of that, the sun was beating down all afternoon at Dodger Stadium.
The Padres’ bullpen nearly managed a combined no-hitter after Harang’s exit, but Dodgers infielder Juan Uribe hit a two-out double in the bottom of the ninth and Dioner Navarro followed with a walkoff RBI single.
Harang lowered his ERA from 3.71 to 3.45 with the remarkable six-inning effort. He’s enjoyed a career resurgence this season in San Diego and could draw interest later this month if the Friars want to shop him.