A tip of the cap to Jonathan Sanchez of the Giants, who last night pitched the first-no hitter at AT&T Park in San Francisco. The accomplishment was especially sweet for Sanchez because, after having been dropped from the starting rotation, he got the no-no while making a spot start in place of the injured Randy Johnson. Further, his father had flown in to see the game and was there to embrace his son after the game.
With the scent of a no-hitter in the air, I normally would be glued to the TV set. But not last night, as I was at the ballpark with my younger son to watch a California League game between the High Desert Mavericks and Modesto Nuts. Not only was the great weather a draw, but we went to see if High Desert’s Jamie McOwen could extend his 45-game hitting streak.
It was not to be. McOwen went 0-for-3.
In the first inning, he bunted with a man on first base – a puzzling move for somebody hitting .355. The bunt bounced high, right to the pitcher, who wheeled and threw out the runner at second. McOwen beat the throw to first and had to settle for a fielder’s choice on the scorecard.
I forget the order, but McOwen walked in one trip to the plate and was retired in another.
For his final at bat in the top of the ninth inning, he struck out swinging. I thought he deserved a standing ovation, but hardly anyone in the crowd seemed to have a clue about what they had just seen.
In any event, I tip my cap to McOwen, who completed the eighth longest hitting streak in minor league baseball history. That’s quite an accomplishment.
My son and I managed to listen to the ninth inning of the Padres-Giants game on the way home. All in all, it was a special night.