Durham Bulls Catcher Chris Giminez cheers as four Bulls pitchers combine to pitch a no-hitter.
Four Durham pitchers combined to throw just the second no-hitter in the team’s International League history on Sunday, May 5, 2013, as the Bulls defeated the Pawtucket Red Sox 2-1 at McCoy Stadium. With an all-New England battery trying to make history in the 9th, lefty Jeff Beliveau fired a third strike past Jeremy Hazelbaker to catcher Craig Albernaz to preserve Jake Odorizzi’s stellar start.
A native of Providence, Beliveau was summoned with two out in the bottom of the 9th, as Durham’s fourth pitcher. Pitching to Albernaz, a Fall River, Mass. native, he inherited Pawtucket’s Mark Hamilton, who represented the tying run.
Beliveau’s final pitch, resulting in his fourth strikeout against as many batters in the series, sealed the Bulls’ first no-hitter since Jason Hamel and Juan Salas combined to beat Columbus, 2-1, on July 16, 2006. It also marked the first time the PawSox were no-hit in a nine-inning game since Toledo’s Jose Lima blanked them, 3-0, on Aug. 17, 1994.
The game nearly ended in a far different outcome immediately before Beliveau (S, 1) entered. Pawtucket started the inning by putting the first two on base, thanks to walks by Kirby Yates. After a sacrifice bunt by Ryan Dent, Brandon Snyder hammered a pitch to deep center field, only to see Durham’s Rich Thompson make a sensational over-the-shoulder catch a step in front of the wall.
Snyder’s drive scored Ryan Lavarnway to draw the Sox within, 2-1. But the contest ended with Hamilton still in scoring position and the PawSox 0-for-6 with runners at second and/or third base. Overall, they stranded six runners, including five in the last three innings, failing to capitalize on eight walks.
Durham right-hander Jake Odorizzi (W, 3-0) overcame his four walks, but left after 7.0 innings and 95 pitches. Opposite Pawtucket knuckleballer Steven Wright (L, 1-1), Odorizzi was staked to an early lead with a pair of unearned runs.
The Bulls scored first after Wright walked a pair with two out in the top of the 1st and Snyder committed an error at third base on Vince Belnome’s sharp ground ball. Ahead 1-0, Durham plated its second run in the 2nd on a passed ball.
But Frank De Los Santos, who walked two in 2/3 of an inning, Yates and Beliveau were able to close out the milestone victory to earn a split of the four-game series.
The Bulls returned home to Downtown Durham on Monday, May 6th, to begin an eight game homestand featuring visits from the Syracuse Chiefs and Lehigh Valley IronPigs.
Thanks to WRALSportsFan.com for this capcom story & to the Durham Bulls for this capcom photo.