Hideo Nomo

Hideo Nomo (野茂 英雄 Nomo Hideo, born August 31, 1968 in Minato-ku, Osaka, Japan) is a retired Japanese baseball pitcher in Nippon Professional Baseball (NPB) and Major League Baseball (MLB). He achieved early success in his native country, where he played with the Kintetsu Buffaloes from 1990 to 1994. He then exploited a loophole to free himself from his contract, and became the first Japanese major leaguer to permanently relocate to Major League Baseball in the United States, debuting with the Los Angeles Dodgers in 1995. Although he was not the first Japanese person to play baseball professionally in the United States, he is often credited with opening the door for Japanese players in Major League Baseball, due to his star status.[1]

Nomo pitched over the span of 13 seasons in the American major leagues with 8 different teams, before retiring in 2008. He won the Rookie of the Year Award in 1995. He twice led the league in strikeouts and also threw two no-hitters. He was the only Japanese pitcher in Major League Baseball to throw a no-hitter until the Seattle Mariners' Hisashi Iwakuma did so on August 12, 2015 against the Baltimore Orioles.[2] Nomo currently resides in Los Angeles.

Hideo Nomo
野茂 英雄
投げます (31879540)
Nomo with the Columbus Clippers in 2005
Pitcher
Born: August 31, 1968 (age 50)
Osaka, Japan
Batted: Right Threw: Right
Professional debut
NPB: April 10, 1990, for the Kintetsu Buffaloes
MLB: May 2, 1995, for the Los Angeles Dodgers
Last appearance
NPB: 1994, for the Kintetsu Buffaloes
MLB: April 18, 2008, for the Kansas City Royals
NPB statistics
Win–loss record78–46
Earned run average3.15
Strikeouts1,204
MLB statistics
Win–loss record123–109
Earned run average4.24
Strikeouts1,918
Teams
Career highlights and awards
NPB

MLB

Member of the Japanese
Empty Star.svg Empty Star.svg Empty Star.svg Baseball Hall of Fame Empty Star.svg Empty Star.svg Empty Star.svg
Induction2014
Medal record
Men's baseball
Representing  Japan
Olympic Games
Silver medal – second place 1988 Seoul Team
Asian Baseball Championship
Gold medal – first place 1989 Seoul Team
Intercontinental Cup
Silver medal – second place 1989 San Juan Team

Early life

Nomo was born into the working-class Osaka family of Shizuo, a fisherman and postal worker, and Kayoko, a part-time supermarket employee. As a youth, Nomo was shy and withdrawn, although passionate about baseball. He developed his corkscrew-style pitching motion in order to impress his father while playing catch. He believed that rotating from having his back turned to his target would help him add speed to his pitches.[3]

Nomo graduated from Seijo Industrial High School in Osaka where he grew to 188 centimetres (6 ft 2 in) and 91 kilograms (201 lb). However, he was not selected in the Nippon Professional Baseball draft due to issues with his control. Instead, in 1988, Nomo joined Shin-Nittetsu Sakai, an Industrial League team representing Nippon Steel's branch in Sakai, Osaka. During this time, Nomo slept with a tennis ball taped between his fingers in order to perfect his forkball grip.[3]

Success in Nippon Professional Baseball

Nomo honed his forkball and his control while pitching in the Industrial League. At the 1988 Summer Olympics, Nomo played for the silver medal-winning Japanese baseball team and the Kintetsu Buffaloes drafted him in 1989. Nomo debuted with them in 1990 and was an immediate success, going 18–8 but more impressively striking out 287 hitters in just 235 innings. The strikeout numbers were attributed to his unorthodox wind-up, where he turned his back to the hitter, raised his pivot leg, and paused for a second before throwing. The delivery increased his pitch speed and made it more difficult for batters to spot the ball coming out of his hand. The windup gave him the nickname "Tornado."[3] Nomo won the Triple Crown that year.[4]

In his first four seasons, Nomo was as consistent, and consistently good, as any pitcher in Japanese baseball, winning 17 or 18 games each year. His fifth season in 1994 was marred by a shoulder injury and netted him only eight wins. Nomo's forkball became famous for being unpredictable for hitters and catchers alike.

Moving to the United States

Nomo had become one of the most popular baseball players in Japan but after the 1994 season, Nomo got into a contract dispute with team management. The Buffaloes rebuffed Nomo's demands to have a contract agent and multi-year contract. Because he was drafted by Kintetsu, the Buffaloes retained exclusive rights to Nomo; however, Nomo's agent, Don Nomura, found a loophole in the Japanese Uniform Players Contract to enable him to become a free agent. The "voluntary retirement clause" allowed a player who retired to play for whomever he wished after returning to active status.[3] This led to him heading to the U.S., where in February 1995, the Los Angeles Dodgers signed him.

Nomo made his U.S. pro baseball debut with the Bakersfield Blaze on April 27, 1995, against the Rancho Cucamonga Quakes. Placed on a 90-pitch limit, and throwing mainly fastballs, Nomo pitched 5⅓ innings, taking the 2–1 loss against the Quakes. On May 2, after a month in the minors necessitated by a player's strike, he became the first Japanese-born Major Leaguer to appear in a major league game since Masanori Murakami in 1965. He was also the first Japanese-born player to relocate permanently to the American major leagues, as Murakami played only two seasons with the San Francisco Giants and then returned to the Japanese major leagues for the remainder of his career. The pressure on Nomo would be tremendous, and Japanese media and fans appeared in large numbers in games he started. Nomo's games were regularly broadcast live to Japan, despite the fact most people would be waking up when he started games.

Career in Major League Baseball

1995–1997

The tornado delivery that baffled batters in Japan had the same effect on major league hitters, and he led the league in strikeouts in 1995 (while finishing second in walks) and was second with a 2.54 ERA. He struck out 11.101 batters per 9 innings to break Sandy Koufax's single-season franchise record of 10.546 in 1962.[5] He also started that year's All-Star Game, striking out three of the six batters he faced. He topped out at 93 mph in that game. But he only barely won NL Rookie of the Year honors that year over future MVP Chipper Jones, as many voters felt that his Japanese success made him anything but a rookie, although he qualified by Major League rules. Nomo had another fine season in 1996 which was capped by a no-hitter thrown on September 17 in the unlikeliest of places, Denver's Coors Field, a park notoriously known as being a hitters' park because of its high elevation, semi-arid climate, and lack of foul territory. He was the last Dodger to throw a no-hitter until Josh Beckett completed one on May 25, 2014.[6]

Nomo also found commercial success in America. Nomo had a signature sneaker, called the Air Max Nomo, produced by Nike in 1996. Also, he appeared on a Segata Sanshiro commercial for the Sega Saturn in 1997.

As batters caught on to his delivery, his effectiveness waned a bit in 1997, although he still went 14–12, joining Dwight Gooden as the only other pitcher to strike out at least 200 batters in each of his first three seasons.

1998–2000

Nomo pitched poorly in 1998, starting the season 2–7 and was dealt to the New York Mets. He was not much better and got released. In 1999, he signed with the Chicago Cubs and made three starts for their Triple-A minor league team before refusing to make further starts in the minors, and got a contract with the Milwaukee Brewers, where he went 12–8 with a 4.54 ERA. He reached the 1,000 strikeout mark in 1999, the third fastest in major league history. The Brewers waived him after contract issues and the Philadelphia Phillies claimed him, then granted him free agency only 24 hours later after more contract issues. Finally signed by the Detroit Tigers in 2000, he went 8–12 with a 4.74 ERA and was again released.

2001–2003

Nomo signed with the Boston Red Sox in 2001 and started the season in spectacular fashion, throwing his second no-hitter in his Sox debut, on April 4, against the Baltimore Orioles, walking three and striking out 11. This no-hitter was the first in the 10-year history of Oriole Park at Camden Yards and made Nomo the first Red Sox to pitch a no-hitter since Dave Morehead in 1965. Nomo also became just the fourth player in baseball history to have thrown a no-hitter in both leagues (joining Cy Young, Jim Bunning and Nolan Ryan. Randy Johnson would later join them, becoming the fifth player after throwing a perfect game in 2004). It is the earliest, calendar-wise, that a Major League Baseball no-hitter has been pitched. Nomo also led the league in strikeouts for the first time since his first season in MLB.

A free agent after the end of the year, Nomo returned to the Dodgers, in 2002, and ended up having his best season since 1996, finished with a 16–6 record, 193 K, and 3.39 ERA. The following year, he had another great season, going 16–13 with 177 K and a 3.09 ERA. During September 2003, however, he began showing signs of injury and fatigue.

2004–2008

Nomo began to struggle again in 2004. After undergoing shoulder surgery in October 2003, he was benched after going 4–11 with an 8.25 ERA for the Dodgers (the worst ERA in the history of baseball for a player with at least 15 decisions in a season).

Before the start of spring training for 2005, he signed a $800,000 contract with the Tampa Bay Devil Rays. The contract also included a $700,000 incentive that kicked in if Nomo started 20 games. The stipulation was allegedly included because Devil Rays upper management was unsure if Nomo had fully recovered from his injury. After a poor start in which he posted a 7.24 ERA, he was released on July 25. Coincidentally or not, this was two days before he was slated to make his twentieth major league start. On July 27, Nomo was picked up off waivers by the New York Yankees, who signed him to a minor league contract, but never recalled him. Nomo was signed to a minor league contract by the Chicago White Sox during spring training in 2006 to play for the Triple-A Charlotte Knights of the International League, but the White Sox released him on June 7 of that year.

In 2007, Nomo signed on with the Leones del Caracas of the Venezuelan Winter League, managed by his former catcher, Carlos Hernández. His participation in the Venezuelan league was viewed as a first step toward an eventual Major League comeback. He made his debut on October 20, 2007, against Tiburones de La Guaira. Nomo pitched one inning, allowing one hit and no runs.

On January 4, 2008, Nomo signed a minor league contract for 2008 with the Kansas City Royals. If added to the roster Nomo would have received a $600,000 one-year contract and the chance to earn $100,000 in performance bonuses.[7] On April 5, his contract was bought by the Royals and was added to the 25-man roster. On April 10, Nomo made his first major league appearance since 2005. He faced the New York Yankees in relief. He was brought in to start the seventh inning of a game while the Yankees were leading 4-1. Nomo loaded the bases, but was able to retire his native countryman, Hideki Matsui, to strand all three runners. However, he later surrendered back-to-back homers to Alex Rodriguez and Jorge Posada in the ninth inning. On April 20, Nomo was designated for assignment.[8] The Royals released him on April 29, 2008. On July 17, 2008, Nomo officially announced his retirement from Major League Baseball.

Post playing career

Prior to the 2016 season, the San Diego Padres hired Nomo as Advisor, Baseball Operations, to assist the club with player development and expand their international profile.[9][10]

Playing style

With an overhand delivery Nomo threw a fastball topping out at 95 mph and a forkball as his primary pitches.[11]

Accomplishments

Nomo has 123 wins in the Major Leagues and 78 in Japan, winning his 200th overall game on June 15, 2005. Nomo's success helped inspire other stars from Japan such as Ichiro Suzuki, Hideki Matsui, and Daisuke Matsuzaka to come over to the States as well.

In addition, Nomo is one of only five players that have ever pitched at least one no-hitter game in both the National League and American League in Major League Baseball history. He has, to date, thrown the only no-hitters at Coors Field and Oriole Park at Camden Yards.

He won the 1996 ESPY Award for Breakthrough Athlete.

Nomo was elected to the Japanese Baseball Hall of Fame in 2014, only the third ever to be selected in their first year of eligibility.[12] At the time, he was also the youngest player ever elected to that Hall of Fame, although his record was broken in 2018 by Hideki Matsui.[13]

In popular culture

A song about Nomo, "There's No One Like Nomo" performed by Jack Sheldon, written by Marvin Hamlisch and Alan and Marilyn Bergman, was released by GNP Crescendo Records (GNPD 1406) in 1996.

Nomo has been referenced in hip-hop lyrics by rappers such as Pusha T and Wale.[14]

Pro wrestler Mitsuhide Hirasawa adopted the ring name Hideo Saito, partially in homage to Nomo.

See also

References

  1. ^ Nomo retires from baseball | dodgers.com: News
  2. ^ [1]
  3. ^ a b c d Whiting, Robert (October 10, 2010). "Contract loophole opened door for Nomo's jump". Japan Times. Retrieved 2 November 2015.
  4. ^ https://www.baseball-reference.com/bullpen/Triple_Crown#Nippon_Professional_Baseball_2
  5. ^ https://www.baseball-reference.com/teams/LAD/leaders_pitch.shtml
  6. ^ "Most Popular". CNN. Archived from the original on December 2, 2008. Retrieved May 4, 2010.
  7. ^ http://www.kansascity.com/sports/royals/story/430041.html
  8. ^ Nomo designated for assignment
  9. ^ Brock, Corey (February 11, 2016). "Padres hire Nomo as baseball ops advisor". MLB.com. Retrieved November 22, 2016.
  10. ^ Brock, Corey (March 1, 2016). "Nomo eager to broaden Padres' Pacific Rim presence". MLB.com. Retrieved November 22, 2016.
  11. ^ BASEBALL; Dodgers Cut Nomo Loose And Will Try to Trade Him The New York Times
  12. ^ Stephen, Eric (January 17, 2014). "Hideo Nomo elected to Japan Baseball Hall of Fame". truebluela.com. Retrieved January 17, 2014.
  13. ^ McIntosh, Whitney (January 16, 2018). "Hideki Matsui was elected to the Japanese Baseball Hall of Fame". SB Nation. Retrieved January 17, 2018.
  14. ^ "Athlete References in Rap Music". Rap Genius. Genius. Retrieved 2 November 2015.

Further reading

External links

1990 Nippon Professional Baseball season

The 1990 Nippon Professional Baseball season was the 41st season of operation for the league.

1995 Los Angeles Dodgers season

The 1995 Los Angeles Dodgers season was notable for the American baseball debut of Japanese pitcher Hideo Nomo. In his first season with the Dodgers after an accomplished career in the Japanese leagues, Nomo went 13-6 with a 2.54 ERA and a league leading 236 strikeouts. He was the starting pitcher in the All-Star game and won the Rookie of the Year award.

The Dodgers won the National League's Western Division title, but lost to the Cincinnati Reds in the NLDS.

1995 Major League Baseball All-Star Game

The 1995 Major League Baseball All-Star Game was the 66th playing of the midsummer classic between the all-stars of the American League (AL) and National League (NL), the two leagues comprising Major League Baseball. The game was held on July 11, 1995, at The Ballpark in Arlington in Arlington, Texas, the home of the Texas Rangers of the American League. It was the first All-Star Game held in the Dallas-Fort Worth area, but not the first hosted by the franchise (as the Washington Senators, the team hosted the game in 1962 and 1969).

In this All-Star Game, American League pitchers held National League batters to just three base hits, but all three were home runs. The game resulted in the National League defeating the American League 3-2. This is also the most recent All-Star Game to be televised by the ABC television network.

Because of the MLBPA Strike, and the lack of official champions, the leagues chose to designate the managers of the unofficial league champions (teams with the best record at the time of abandonment of the season) as managers for this All-Star Game.

There were two color guards participating in the pregame ceremonies. The Royal Canadian Mounted Police National Color Guard from Ottawa, Ontario, carried the Canadian flag, while the 1995-96 Del Rio (TX) High School ROTC Color Guard carried the American flag. Country singer Michelle Wright later sang "O Canada", while fellow country singer (and native Texan) Lyle Lovett sang "The Star-Spangled Banner". Nolan Ryan threw out the ceremonial first pitch.

National League President Len Coleman presented Jeff Conine with the All-Star Game MVP Award in lieu of the Commissioner of Baseball, marking the second year in a row that Coleman presided over the MVP Award presentation.

1998 Los Angeles Dodgers season

The 1998 season saw the sale of the franchise from Peter O'Malley to the Fox Entertainment Group take effect. The new corporate executives would quickly anger Dodger fans when they bypassed General Manager Fred Claire and made one of the biggest trades in franchise history. They traded All-Star catcher Mike Piazza and starting third baseman Todd Zeile to the Florida Marlins for a package that included Gary Sheffield.

The team on the field performed poorly under all the stress and soon Fox fired Claire and manager Bill Russell, replacing them with former Manager Tommy Lasorda, who was appointed interim GM and Minor League manager Glenn Hoffman who took over for Russell. The team limped along to finish in third place in the National League West and more changes were in the offing for the following season.

2003 Los Angeles Dodgers season

The 2003 season was a turbulent period as News Corporation (Fox) was seeking to sell the team. Nevertheless, the Dodgers fell just short of a Wild Card berth, winning 85 games, finishing second in the Western Division of the National League. The Dodgers pitching staff led baseball in earned run average, Éric Gagné became the first Dodger to earn the NL Cy Young Award since 1988 as he converted all 55 of his save opportunities. Shawn Green set a new L.A. Dodger single season record with 49 doubles and Paul Lo Duca had a 25-game hitting streak.

2004 Los Angeles Dodgers season

The 2004 season brought change to the Dodgers as the sale of the franchise to developer Frank McCourt was finalized during spring training. McCourt promptly dismissed General Manager Dan Evans and hired Paul DePodesta to take over the team. That led to a flurry of trade activity as the new group attempted to rebuild the Dodgers in their image.

Despite it all, the Dodgers managed to finish the season in first place in the Western Division of the National League and won their first post season game since 1988. However they lost the NL Division Series 3-1 to the St. Louis Cardinals.

Best Breakthrough Athlete ESPY Award

The Best Breakthrough Athlete ESPY Award, known alternatively as the Breakthrough Athlete of the Year ESPY Award, is an annual award honoring the achievements of an individual in the world of sports. It was first awarded as part of the ESPY Awards in 1993. The Best Breakthrough Athlete ESPY Award trophy, created by sculptor Lawrence Nowlan, is awarded to the sportsperson adjudged to have made the greatest breakthrough in a major international individual sport or North American professional team sport. The award is typically given to a sportsperson in his or her rookie season at a given level but may be won by any athlete who in a given year improves his or her performance dramatically or otherwise becomes well-recognized. Since 2004, the winner has been chosen by online voting through choices selected by the ESPN Select Nominating Committee. Before that, determination of the winners was made by an panel of experts. Through the 2001 iteration of the ESPY Awards, ceremonies were conducted in February of each year to honor achievements over the previous calendar year; awards presented thereafter are conferred in July and reflect performance from the June previous.The inaugural winner of the Best Breakthrough Athlete ESPY Award in 1993 was San Diego Pardres outfielder Gary Sheffield. The Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Hideo Nomo of Japan received the trophy in 1996, and is one of two sports persons born outside of the United States to have received the award, the other being Dominican Republican left fielder and second baseman Alfonso Soriano of the New York Yankees in 2003. It has been awarded to one woman in its history, Mo'ne Davis of the Little League Baseball team Anderson Monarchs.in 2015. American football players have been most successful at the awards with eleven victories and thirteen nominations, followed by baseball players with eight wins and ten nominations. No athlete has ever won the accolade more than once. The 2017 winner of the Best Breakthrough Athlete ESPY Award was quarterback Dak Prescott of the Dallas Cowboys who led the No. 1 National Football Conference seed to a 13–3 record.

Dave Morehead

David Michael Morehead (born September 5, 1942 in San Diego, California) is a former Major League Baseball pitcher. A right-hander, Morehead pitched for the Boston Red Sox (1963–68) and Kansas City Royals (1969–70).

As a rookie in 1963 Morehead broke into the Red Sox starting rotation and posted a 10-13 record with a 3.81 earned run average. He shut out the Washington Senators in his Major League debut on April 13. On May 12 of that same year, he pitched a one-hitter against the same Senators, the lone hit coming on a Chuck Hinton home run.

In 1964 Morehead went 8-15 and his ERA ballooned to 4.97. In 1965 he tied for the American League lead with 18 losses, against 10 victories, for a Red Sox team that finished next-to-last, with 100 losses. On September 16 of the latter year, the same day the Red Sox fired Pinky Higgins as general manager, Morehead no-hit the Cleveland Indians 2-0 before only 1,247 fans in a day game at Fenway Park, the lone baserunner coming on Rocky Colavito's second-inning walk. Not until Hideo Nomo in 2001 would another Red Sox pitch a no-hitter, and the next no-hitter at Fenway Park wouldn't come until 2002 (Derek Lowe), It was the fourth no-hitter by a Red Sox pitcher in a ten-year period, with Mel Parnell pitching one in 1956 and Earl Wilson and Bill Monbouquette both pitching one in 1962. Parnell's and Wilson's no-hitters, like Morehead's, had also been pitched at Fenway Park—one of Major League Baseball's most notorious hitter-friendly stadiums. It would be another 37 years before a Red Sox pitcher threw a no-hitter at Fenway.

Over the next three years, Morehead would be beset by arm ailments that limited him to 33 games pitched—one fewer than in 1965. He was a member of the Carl Yastrzemski-led 1967 Red Sox team that won the American League pennant and pitched two games in relief in the World Series, which the Red Sox lost to the St. Louis Cardinals in seven games. Morehead was selected in the expansion draft by the Kansas City Royals and pitched in 21 games in 1969, 19 in relief. In 1970 he pitched in 28 games and posted a 3.62 ERA, the lowest of his career. In spring training of 1971, the Royals released him; he had pitched his final game at 28 years of age, the arm ailments having ended his career prematurely.

In his career, Morehead won 40 games against 64 losses with a 4.15 ERA and 627 strikeouts in 819.1 innings pitched. He also exhibited periods of wildness, walking 463 batters for just over 5 BB/9 innings. In each of his first three seasons, Morehead was second in the American League in walks with 99, 112 and 113 respectively.

Eiji Sawamura Award

The Eiji Sawamura Award (沢村栄治賞, Sawamura Eiji-shō), commonly known as the Sawamura Award, is an honor bestowed upon the top starting pitcher in Nippon Professional Baseball each year.

The award was originally established by Japanese magazine "Nekkyū" in 1947 to honor the career of Eiji Sawamura, a power pitcher who enjoyed an illustrious career for the Tokyo Giants before being killed in combat during World War II. It is a special award that is independent of the official Most Valuable Pitcher award that is presented to one pitcher in each league (Central and Pacific) each year.

Hiromitsu Kadota

Hiromitsu Kadota (門田 博光, Kadota Hiromitsu, born February 26, 1948, in Onoda, Japan) was a Japanese professional baseball player for the Hawks franchise (known during his career as the Nankai Hawks and the Fukuoka Daiei Hawks) and the Orix Braves. Reputed for his slugging ability, he ate a lot and became a strong hitter, though was later weakened by diabetes mellitus. With 567 home runs, Kadota is number three on the NPB career list.

Kadota won the Nippon Professional Baseball Comeback Player of the Year Award in 1980 with 41 home runs and 84 RBI.

He hit 44 home runs at the age of 40 in 1988, also knocking in 125 runs and winning the Pacific League Most Valuable Player Award. That year he was also given the Matsutaro Shoriki Award, for contribution to the development of professional baseball.

After playing for the Orix Braves for two seasons, he returned to the Hawks in 1991; he retired after his last game against pitcher Hideo Nomo in 1992.

Kadota was inducted into the Japanese Baseball Hall of Fame in 2006.

Japan Professional Sports Grand Prize

Japan Professional Sports Grand Prize (日本プロスポーツ大賞, Nippon Puro Supōtsu Taisyō) is given to one sportsperson or sports team every year since 1968 by the Japan Professional Sports Association. The award is one of the most prestigious all-sport awards in Japanese sport. The recordholders are the baseball players Ichiro Suzuki and Sadaharu Oh (three awards). A committee of representatives from Tokyo newspapers, wire services, television and radio for sports media are responsible for making the selections. The winner is given the Prime Minister Trophy.

Jim Bunning's perfect game

On June 21, 1964, Jim Bunning of the Philadelphia Phillies pitched the seventh perfect game in Major League Baseball history, defeating the New York Mets 6-0 in the first game of a doubleheader at Shea Stadium. A father of seven children at the time, Bunning pitched his perfect game on Father's Day. One of Bunning's daughters, Barbara, was in attendance, as was his wife, Mary.

Needing only 90 pitches to complete his masterpiece, Bunning struck out 10 batters, including six of the last nine he faced; the last two strikeouts were of the last two batters he faced: George Altman and John Stephenson.

The perfect game was the first regular season perfect game since Charlie Robertson's perfect game in 1922 (Don Larsen had pitched a perfect game in between, in the 1956 World Series), as well as the first in modern-day National League history (two perfect games had been pitched in 1880). It was also the first no-hitter by a Phillies pitcher since Johnny Lush no-hit the Brooklyn Superbas on May 1, 1906.

Bunning, who no-hit the Boston Red Sox while with the Detroit Tigers in 1958, joined Cy Young as the only pitchers to throw no-hitters in both the National and American Leagues; he has since been joined by Nolan Ryan, Hideo Nomo and Randy Johnson. The perfect game also made Bunning the third pitcher, after Young and Addie Joss, to throw a perfect game and an additional no-hitter; Sandy Koufax, Johnson, Mark Buehrle and Roy Halladay have since joined him (the latter of these pitchers pitched his additional no-hitter in the 2010 National League Division Series after pitching his perfect game earlier in the season).

As the perfect game developed, Bunning defied the baseball superstition that no one should talk about a no-hitter in progress, speaking to his teammates about the perfect game to keep himself relaxed and loosen up his teammates. Bunning had abided by the tradition during a near-no hitter a few weeks before, determining afterwards that keeping quiet didn’t help.Gus Triandos, Bunning's catcher, had also caught Hoyt Wilhelm's no-hitter on September 20, 1958 while with the Baltimore Orioles, becoming the first catcher to catch no-hitters in both leagues.

List of Boston Red Sox no-hitters

The Boston Red Sox are a Major League Baseball franchise based in Boston, Massachusetts, also known in their early years as the "Boston Americans" (1901–07). They play in the American League East division. Pitchers for the Red Sox have thrown 18 no-hitters in franchise history.A no-hitter is officially recognized by Major League Baseball "when a pitcher (or pitchers) allows no hits during the entire course of a game, which consists of at least nine innings. In a no-hit game, a batter may reach base via a walk, an error, a hit by pitch, a passed ball or wild pitch on strike three, or catcher's interference." (No-hitters of less than nine complete innings were previously recognized by the league as official; however, several rule alterations in 1991 changed the rule to its current form.) A no-hitter is rare enough that one team in Major League Baseball, the San Diego Padres, has never had a pitcher accomplish the feat. The New York Mets' first no-hitter (pitched by Johan Santana) came on June 1, 2012, in the team's 8,021st game and 51st season.One perfect game, a special subcategory of no-hitter, has been pitched in Red Sox history. As defined by Major League Baseball, "in a perfect game, no batter reaches any base during the course of the game." Every opposing batter is retired. This feat was achieved by Cy Young in 1904. Young's perfect game, pitched on May 5, 1904, also was the first no-hitter in Red Sox history; the most recent Red Sox no-hitter was thrown by Jon Lester on May 19, 2008.Two pitchers have thrown more than one no-hitter in a Red Sox uniform, Hall of Famer Cy Young and Dutch Leonard. Thirteen of the Red Sox no-hitters were thrown at home (the first four at the Huntington Avenue Grounds and the other nine at Fenway Park) and five on the road. Two were thrown in April, two in May, five in June, two in July, three in August, and four in September. The longest interval between Red Sox no-hitters was 35 years, 6 months, and 18 days, between the games pitched by Dave Morehead, on September 16, 1965 and Hideo Nomo, on April 4, 2001. The shortest interval between Red Sox no-hitters was merely 1 month and 6 days, between the games pitched by Earl Wilson on June 26, 1962 and Bill Monbouquette on August 1, 1962.The Red Sox have no-hit the Chicago White Sox and Baltimore Orioles (formerly the "St. Louis Browns") the most: four times each. The White Sox were no-hit by Jesse Tannehill in 1904, Bill Dinneen in 1905, Parnell in 1956, and Monbouquette in 1962. The Browns and Orioles were no-hit by Smokey Joe Wood in 1911, Leonard in 1916, Hideo Nomo in 2001, and Clay Buchholz in 2007. The Red Sox have won all of their no-hitters (three times in major league history a team has thrown a nine-inning no-hitter and lost the game). The most baserunners allowed in a Red Sox no-hitter was five, by Dutch Leonard in 1918. Of the 18 Red Sox no-hitters, four have been won by a score of 4–0 and another four by a score of 2–0, making those final scores more common than any other results. The largest margin of victory in a Red Sox no-hitter was 10–0, in wins by Derek Lowe in 2002 and Clay Buchholz in 2007. The smallest margin of victory was 1–0, Monbouquette's no-hitter in 1962.

12 different managers have led the team during the franchise's 18 no-hitters. 15 different home plate umpires presided over the franchise's 18 no-hitters. Jason Varitek has caught the last 4 of the Red Sox's No-hitters, a Major League record for No-hitters caught by one catcher.

List of Los Angeles Dodgers no-hitters

The Los Angeles Dodgers are a Major League Baseball franchise currently based in Los Angeles. They play in the National League West division. The franchise joined the American Association in 1884 as the "Brooklyn Atlantics". They have been known in their early years as the "Brooklyn Grays" (1885–87), "Brooklyn Bridegrooms" (1888–90, 1896–98), "Brooklyn Grooms" (1891–95), "Brooklyn Superbas" (1899–1910, 1913), "Brooklyn Robins" (1914–31), and "Brooklyn Dodgers" (1911–12, 1932–57). There have been 20 pitchers for the Dodgers that have thrown 25 no-hitters in franchise history. A no-hitter is officially recognized by Major League Baseball only "...when a pitcher (or pitchers) allows no hits during the entire course of a game, which consists of at least nine innings. In a no-hit game, a batter may reach base via a walk, an error, a hit by pitch, a passed ball or wild pitch on strike three, or catcher's interference". No-hitters of less than nine complete innings were previously recognized by the league as official; however, several rule alterations in 1991 changed the rule to its current form. A no-hitter is common enough that only one team in Major League Baseball has never had a pitcher accomplish the feat.

There has been one perfect game thrown by a Dodgers pitcher. A perfect game is defined by Major League Baseball as occurring "when a pitcher (or pitchers) retires each batter on the opposing team during the entire course of a game, which consists of at least nine innings. In a perfect game, no batter reaches any base during the course of the game." This feat was achieved by Sandy Koufax on September 9, 1965. It was Koufax's fourth career no-hitter, and is the franchise record for no-hitters by one pitcher. At the time, Koufax's four no-hitters was the major league record for any pitcher, but it was later surpassed in 1981 by Nolan Ryan.

Sam Kimber threw the first no-hitter in Dodgers history on October 4, 1884, which ended as a scoreless tie after ten innings. The most recent no-hitter thrown by a Dodgers pitcher was on May 4, 2018 by four pitchers. Walker Buehler 3rd career start 6 IP, Tony Cingrani 1 IP, Adam Liberatore 1 IP, and Yimi Garcia 1 IP. It was the first no hitter outside of United States or Canada as it was pitched in Monterrey, Mexico. It was also the first combined no hitter in franchise history. Five of the 20 pitchers were left-handed pitchers, 14 were right-handed, and one, Tom Lovett, is still unknown. In addition to Koufax, two other Dodgers pitchers have thrown multiple no-hitters, Adonis Terry and Carl Erskine. 18 of the no-hitters were thrown at home and eight on the road. The longest interval between no-hitters was between the games pitched by Hideo Nomo and Josh Beckett, encompassing 17 years and 250 days from September 17, 1996 until May 25, 2014. Conversely, the shortest interval between no-hitters was between the games pitched by Beckett and Clayton Kershaw, encompassing merely 24 days from May 25, 2014 until June 18, 2014. The San Francisco Giants (formerly "New York Giants") have been no-hit six times, the most by any Dodgers opponent. Dazzy Vance is the only Dodgers no-hit pitcher to have allowed at least one run. The most baserunners allowed in any of these game were by Terry (in 1886) and Koufax (in 1962), who each allowed five. Of the 26 no-hitters, five have been won by a score of 5–0 and four by the score of 3–0, more common than any other results. The largest margin of victory in a no-hitter was a 9–0 win by Hideo Nomo in 1996 and a 10–1 win by Vance in 1925. The smallest margins of victory were 1–0 wins by Terry in 1888 and Koufax in 1965.

The umpire is an integral part of any no-hitter. The task of the umpire in a baseball game is to make any decision "which involves judgment, such as, but not limited to, whether a batted ball is fair or foul, whether a pitch is a strike or a ball, or whether a runner is safe or out… [the umpire's judgment on such matters] is final." Part of the duties of the umpire making calls at home plate includes defining the strike zone, which "is defined as that area over homeplate (sic) the upper limit of which is a horizontal line at the midpoint between the top of the shoulders and the top of the uniform pants, and the lower level is a line at the hollow beneath the kneecap." These calls define every baseball game and are therefore integral to the completion of any no-hitter. There have been 24 different home plate umpires who have called Dodgers no-hitters; Babe Pinelli is the only umpire to have called two.

List of Major League Baseball players from Japan

A total of 58 Japanese-born players have played in at least one Major League Baseball (MLB) game. Of these players, six are currently on MLB rosters. The first instance of a Japanese player playing in MLB occurred in 1964, when the Nankai Hawks, a Nippon Professional Baseball (NPB) team, sent three exchange prospects to the United States to gain experience in MLB's minor league system. One of the players, pitcher Masanori Murakami, was named the California League Rookie of the Year while playing for the Fresno Giants (the San Francisco Giants' Class-A team).

Giants executives were impressed with his talent and on September 1, 1964 Murakami was promoted, thus becoming the first Japanese player to play in MLB. After Murakami put up good pitching statistics as a reliever, Giants executives sought to exercise a clause in their contract with the Hawks that, they claimed, allowed them to buy up an exchange prospect's contract. NPB officials objected, stating that they had no intention of selling Murakami's contract to the Giants and telling them that Murakami was merely on loan for the 1964 season. After a two-month stalemate the Giants eventually agreed to send Murakami back to the Hawks after the 1965 season. This affair led to the 1967 United States – Japanese Player Contract Agreement, also known as the "Working Agreement", between MLB and NPB, which was basically a hands-off policy.For thirty years Murakami was the only Japanese player to appear in an MLB game. Pitcher Hideo Nomo, with the help of agent Don Nomura, became the second Japanese player to play in MLB in 1995. Nomo, who was not yet eligible for free agency in Japan, was advised by Nomura that a "voluntary retirement" clause in the Working Agreement did not specify that a player wishing to play again after retiring must return to NPB. Nomo utilized this loophole to void his NPB contract with the Kintetsu Buffaloes and play in MLB. He announced his retirement from NPB in late 1994 and signed with the Los Angeles Dodgers in February 1995. Nomo's maneuver and Hideki Irabu's later MLB contractual complications were contributing factors to a major revision of the Working Agreement in 1998 that created the current posting system. Since its inception 16 Japanese players have been signed through the system, however one of these players, Shinji Mori, did not play in a single MLB game due to an injury. NPB players who have nine or more years of playing service with NPB can become international free agents and do not need to enter MLB through the posting system. The remaining Japanese players that have played in MLB have either signed as free agents or signed as amateur players. Mac Suzuki, Kazuhito Tadano, and Junichi Tazawa are the only Japanese players to have debuted in MLB without previously playing in NPB.Japanese players have had a range of success in MLB. Twelve players have been selected to participate in the All-Star Game; Ichiro Suzuki has made the most appearances with ten. In addition to these selections, Ichiro has won several prestigious MLB awards including the American League (AL) Rookie of the Year Award and the AL Most Valuable Player (MVP) Award in 2001, the All-Star Game MVP Award in 2007 and multiple Gold Glove and Silver Slugger Awards. Ichiro also holds the MLB record for the recording the most hits in a single season. Hideo Nomo was the only Japanese pitcher to throw a no-hitter until Hisashi Iwakuma accomplished the feat on August 12, 2015. Nomo threw two in total; the first came in 1996 and the last occurred in 2001. Thirteen Japanese players have played in the World Series. Of these players, So Taguchi has won the most with two and Hideki Matsui is the only one to win the World Series MVP Award. The 2007 World Series had the most Japanese players, with Daisuke Matsuzaka and Hideki Okajima pitching for the Boston Red Sox, and Kazuo Matsui playing for the Colorado Rockies.

List of Seattle Mariners no-hitters

The Seattle Mariners are a Major League Baseball franchise based in Seattle, Washington. Formed in 1977, they play in the American League West division. Pitchers for the Mariners have thrown six (6) no-hitters in franchise history. A no-hitter is officially recognized by Major League Baseball only when a pitcher (or pitchers) "allows no hits during the entire course of a game, which consists of at least nine innings." The first perfect game in Mariners' history (a special subcategory of no-hitter in which "no batter reaches any base during the course of the game") was thrown on August 15, 2012 by Félix Hernández, who beat the Tampa Bay Rays in a 1-0 victory with 12 strikeouts. The Félix Hernández perfect game and Hisashi Iwakuma no hitter both took place as Wednesday matinee games that were "Mariners Camp Day" where the team hosted local summer camps.

Nippon Professional Baseball

Nippon Professional Baseball (日本野球機構, Nippon Yakyū Kikō) or NPB is the highest level of baseball in Japan. Locally, it is often called Puro Yakyū (プロ野球), meaning Professional Baseball. Outside Japan, it is often just referred to as "Japanese baseball". The roots of the league can be traced back to the formation of the "Greater Japan Tokyo Baseball Club" (大日本東京野球倶楽部, Dai-Nippon Tōkyō Yakyū Kurabu) in Tokyo, founded 1934 and the original circuit for the sport in the Empire two years later - Japanese Baseball League (1936-1949), and surprisingly even continued to play through the dark years of total warfare with Japan's invasion of Manchuria (northeast China) in 1931, and intervening in the Chinese Civil War in 1937 with the wider Sino-Japanese War (1937-1945), and into the greater World War II (1939-1945).

The new NPB for Japan was formed when that sports organization reorganized in 1950 with creating its two leagues with six teams each of the Central League and the Pacific League with an annual season ending Japan Series championship play-off series of games starting that year for the JPB on the lines of the American World Series tournament (since 1903).

Takehiro Ishii

Takehiro Ishii (石井 丈裕, born October 25, 1964) is a Japanese former professional baseball pitcher. He played for the Japan national baseball team in 1988, and in Nippon Professional Baseball (NPB) for the Seibu Lions and the Nippon-Ham Fighters from 1989–1999.

Along with Shigeru Sugishita (1954) and Tsuneo Horiuchi (1972), he is one of only three players in NPB history to have won the Most Valuable Player Award, the Eiji Sawamura Award, and the Japan Series MVP in the same season.

Todd Hollandsworth

Todd Mathew Hollandsworth (born April 20, 1973) is an American former professional baseball outfielder in Major League Baseball (MLB). In 1996, he won the National League Rookie of the Year Award, setting a record as the fifth consecutive Los Angeles Dodgers rookie to do so (preceded by Eric Karros, Mike Piazza, Raúl Mondesí, and Hideo Nomo).

Awards and achievements
Preceded by
Greg Maddux
National League All-Star Game Starting Pitcher
1995
Succeeded by
John Smoltz
Preceded by
Dwight Gooden
Eric Milton
No-hitter pitcher
September 17, 1996
April 4, 2001
Succeeded by
Kevin Brown
A. J. Burnett
Preceded by
Kevin Brown
Los Angeles Dodgers Opening Day
Starting pitcher

2003–2004
Succeeded by
Derek Lowe
Preceded by
Greg Maddux
NL hits per nine innings
1995
Succeeded by
Al Leiter

Languages

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