What a day of baseball! There was plenty of excitement around the league, with storylines popping out of the contests featuring the Yankees’ AL rivals. It was hard to see anyone topping Aaron Judge’s three-run walk-off home run into the second deck in left field to snatch a victory away from the rival Blue Jays. Not a bad way to tally his first career walk-off homer!
However, that was just the opening act of the night, so let’s dive right into the action from the Bombers’ AL foes.
Boston Red Sox (11-19) vs. Atlanta Braves (14-17)
This game was over practically before it began. Braves starter Kyle Wright, who’s been so dominant in the early season, got into a right mess in the second inning. He loaded the bases on a procession of one-out singles and walks, bringing Rafael Devers to the plate for his second time in as a many frames. He crushed a first-pitch fastball for a no-doubter grand slam to right-center:
By the time the dust had settled on the inning, the Red Sox had put up a six-spot, effectively ending the contest.
The Braves answered back with three runs in the third including a Travis d’Arnaud two-run homer and another in the seventh, but that was as close as they would come. Boston truly put it to bed in the ninth, scoring three runs including a pair on a Trevor Story single, to wrap up a 9-4 victory.
Houston Astros (19-11) vs. Minnesota Twins (18-12)
This was a real gem. Justin Verlander, even at 39 years old, proved that he is still one of the very best starting pitchers in the game. He carried a no-hitter into the eighth inning, carving up the Twins lineup with vintage JV filth.
Justin Verlander, 77mph Curveball and Elevated 95mph Fastball, Individual Pitches + Overlay— Rob Friedman (@PitchingNinja) May 11, 2022
Why would you swing at a Fastball way out of the zone? pic.twitter.com/ctNTzioGsf
Alas, old friend Gio Urshela broke up the no-hit bid with a one-out oppo single, leaving Verlander five outs shy of becoming just the third pitcher with at least four career no-hitters. He would have joined Sandy Koufax as pitchers to have thrown four, trailing only Nolan Ryan and his likely unmatchable seven no-hitters.
On the offensive side, star rookie shortstop Jeremy Peña drove in a run in the second and fourth. Yordan Álvarez and Alex Bregman each contributed sac flies while Bregman collected an additional RBI with a fifth inning single. That would be all as the Astros cruised by the Carlos Correa-less Twins to an easy 5-0 win.
Tampa Bay Rays (18-13) vs. Los Angeles Angels (21-11)
Not to be outdone by Verlander, Angels rookie starter Reid Detmers carried his no-hit bid over the finish line, becoming the first rookie to throw a no-hitter since Tyler Gilbert last season.
Detmers allowed just two baserunners all game on a walk and a fielding error. It also helped that he was pitching with a sizable cushion all game, as the Angels hitters first teed off on Corey Kluber and then the position-player pitching Brett Phillips.
Mike Trout clubbed a pair of home runs to climb to second on the MLB long ball leaderboard behind Judge. As if that wasn’t enough excitement, righty Anthony Rendon hit an eighth-inning home run batting left-handed! To pitch a no-hitter as a rookie in a game his team won 12-0 is a memory that I’m sure Detmers will treasure for the rest of his life.
Detmers alongside Verlander and Nestor Cortes all carried no-hit bids into the eighth inning or later this week alone!