Reds’ Homer Bailey Throws 7th No-Hitter of Season

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It was the fifth inning Friday night when Homer Bailey looked up to see how many innings he had pitched. He learned something more: that he had not given up a hit to the Pittsburgh Pirates.

Bailey did not let that news change the way he pitched. Instead, the 26-year-old stayed the course and spun baseball’s seven no-hitter of the season, as the Reds won 1-0.

“I looked up at the scoreboard (after the fifth inning) to see if I had hit 200 (innings) and saw a couple of zeros,” Bailey said. “That’s when I knew I had a chance at a no-hitter. It’s not something you think about doing.”

It was the 15th no-hitter in Reds history and first since Tom Browning’s perfect game against the Los Angles Dodgers on Sept. 16, 1988. The seven major league no-hitters match the modern record for one season, tying 1990 and 1991. There were eight no-hitters in 1884.

“I don’t think there is any reason why there have been so many,” Bailey said. “There is a real fine line there in throwing a no-hitter. A bloop can fall in the outfield or an infielder can be in the wrong position and there goes your hit. You have to be extremely fortunate to throw a no-hitter, and we had luck on our side tonight.”

Bailey (13-10) struck out 10 and walked one. He threw 115 pitches and retired the side in order in the ninth, striking out pinch-hitter Brock Holt and inducing Machael McKenry and Alex Presley into pop outs. Bailey was mobbed near the mound by happy teammates and doused with water.

Bailey improved to 5-0 with a 1.40 ERA in six career starts at PNC Park. All three of his complete games and both his shutouts have come against Pittsburgh.

It was the first time the Pirates had been held hitless since Hall of Famer Bob Gibson pitched the lone no-hitter of his career in 1971 for the St. Louis Cardinals. Cincinnati, which clinched the NL Central title last Saturday, improved to 95-62. The Reds are tied with Washington for the best record in the NL.

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