No-hitter in the playoffs

Baseball’s playoffs–generally the best games of the year–got off to an amazing start as the Phillies’ Roy Halladay pitched the second no-hitter in the history of postseason play. (The first was in 1956.):

In the last 54 years of baseball history prior to Wednesday night, there had been 952 postseason games played, all of which shared two common traits of omission: None had ever included a no-hit game, and none had ever been graced by Harry Leroy Halladay.

But on a chilly, drizzly night at Philadelphia’s Citizens Bank Park, first one historic hole was filled, and then the other. At 5:08 p.m., Roy Halladay, the Phillies’ brilliant right-hander, threw the first postseason pitch of his career, and at 7:42 p.m. baseball’s first postseason no-hitter since 1956 was complete.

Halladay, 33, turned his postseason debut into the most impressive pitching performance in half a century of baseball history – holding the Cincinnati Reds hitless in a 4-0 Phillies victory in Game 1 of the National League Division Series.

via Roy Halladay no-hitter lifts Phillies past Reds in Game 1.

I can’t see anyone in Philadelphia’s league pitching-wise, but anything can happen.  I was hoping Cincinnatti (the victim of Halladay’s achievement) and Texas do well.  (And the Rangers did defeat the Rays for their first game.)  But I predict Philadelphia will win it all again.  What is your baseball analysis and prognostication?

About Gene Veith

Professor of Literature at Patrick Henry College, the Director of the Cranach Institute at Concordia Theological Seminary, a columnist for World Magazine and TableTalk, and the author of 18 books on different facets of Christianity & Culture.

  • http://www.thinkingchristian.net Tom Gilson

    Not the first no-hitter in the history of post-season play. The article you’ve linked to tells the rest of the story, but I have a special feeling of my own for the first one–fifty four years ago tomorrow.

  • http://www.thinkingchristian.net Tom Gilson

    Not the first no-hitter in the history of post-season play. The article you’ve linked to tells the rest of the story, but I have a special feeling of my own for the first one–fifty four years ago tomorrow.

  • Pete

    Those of us who suffered through the Phils’ infamous collapse of ’64 are ever wary but – go Phillies! This could be the year.

  • Pete

    Those of us who suffered through the Phils’ infamous collapse of ’64 are ever wary but – go Phillies! This could be the year.

  • http://www.geneveith.com Gene Veith

    Thanks, Tom! How could I have forgotten Don Larson’s perfect game in the 1956 World Series? I was five years old. And you were just being born!

  • http://www.geneveith.com Gene Veith

    Thanks, Tom! How could I have forgotten Don Larson’s perfect game in the 1956 World Series? I was five years old. And you were just being born!

  • Econ Jeff

    Sorry, but it’s going to be the Giants this year (I hope!). Let’s not forget that Lincecum and Zito are both Cy Young winners and Cain isn’t too shabby either. Of course, I’m probably only dreaming here…

  • Econ Jeff

    Sorry, but it’s going to be the Giants this year (I hope!). Let’s not forget that Lincecum and Zito are both Cy Young winners and Cain isn’t too shabby either. Of course, I’m probably only dreaming here…

  • Gregg

    I think when they are on, the Giants rotation matches the Phillies easily, and the Giants bullpen has been lights out. I’m hoping Cincy can knock the Phillies around – take it to five, but my heart is and always will be in San Fran. Go Giants!!!

  • Gregg

    I think when they are on, the Giants rotation matches the Phillies easily, and the Giants bullpen has been lights out. I’m hoping Cincy can knock the Phillies around – take it to five, but my heart is and always will be in San Fran. Go Giants!!!

  • http://enterthevein.wordpress.com J. Dean

    Just my two cents, but I think baseball’s about a month too long.

  • http://enterthevein.wordpress.com J. Dean

    Just my two cents, but I think baseball’s about a month too long.

  • scots

    I don’t care who wins as long as it isn’t the Yankees … it’s really that simple

  • scots

    I don’t care who wins as long as it isn’t the Yankees … it’s really that simple

  • scots

    J. Dean@6
    I wish baseball was played continuously all year round (like the NFL)

    I’m sure we’ve all seen this, but it bears repeating:

    America’s greatest contributions to civilizaiton:

    1 The Constitution
    2 Baseball
    3 Jazz

    (in that order)

  • scots

    J. Dean@6
    I wish baseball was played continuously all year round (like the NFL)

    I’m sure we’ve all seen this, but it bears repeating:

    America’s greatest contributions to civilizaiton:

    1 The Constitution
    2 Baseball
    3 Jazz

    (in that order)

  • DonS

    I grew up in the Philadelphia area, and am a long-suffering Phillies Phan. The concept of the Phillies being perennial contenders is still a dream I haven’t come to grips with. After all, they only won their first World Series in 1980, nearly 100 years after their founding!

    It does seem to be the Phillies’ year. They have the best current three man rotation in the game, and home field advantage throughout the playoffs. The Reds have a great batting lineup, but not much pitching, and we saw yesterday that good pitching always beats good hitting. If the Giants beat the Braves (and I think they will), then the Phillies-Giants series should be a great one. The Giants starting staff matches up pretty well, and they have a better bullpen than the Phillies. But, with home field advantage, and a better lineup, I think the Phillies prevail.

    I predict a Phillies-Yankees matchup again this year. Phillies in 6.

  • DonS

    I grew up in the Philadelphia area, and am a long-suffering Phillies Phan. The concept of the Phillies being perennial contenders is still a dream I haven’t come to grips with. After all, they only won their first World Series in 1980, nearly 100 years after their founding!

    It does seem to be the Phillies’ year. They have the best current three man rotation in the game, and home field advantage throughout the playoffs. The Reds have a great batting lineup, but not much pitching, and we saw yesterday that good pitching always beats good hitting. If the Giants beat the Braves (and I think they will), then the Phillies-Giants series should be a great one. The Giants starting staff matches up pretty well, and they have a better bullpen than the Phillies. But, with home field advantage, and a better lineup, I think the Phillies prevail.

    I predict a Phillies-Yankees matchup again this year. Phillies in 6.

  • Richard

    I’m with scots: Please, not the Yankees.

  • Richard

    I’m with scots: Please, not the Yankees.

  • EGK

    Please note that the article said that this was the first one in fifty-four years! That means, since Don Larson’s perfect game, which of course was the first one ever. Given that the teams in the playoffs are the best the game has to offer at that time, it is not surprising that no hitters are rare. And in 1956 not only were there only sixteen teams, there was only the World Series, so the talent pool was far less diluted than it is today and there were only at most seven play off games a year. An astounding feat then, and still incredible!

  • EGK

    Please note that the article said that this was the first one in fifty-four years! That means, since Don Larson’s perfect game, which of course was the first one ever. Given that the teams in the playoffs are the best the game has to offer at that time, it is not surprising that no hitters are rare. And in 1956 not only were there only sixteen teams, there was only the World Series, so the talent pool was far less diluted than it is today and there were only at most seven play off games a year. An astounding feat then, and still incredible!

  • http://www.nuneslaw.com/ Fresno DUI Attorney

    What a great pitched game by Doc

  • http://www.nuneslaw.com/ Fresno DUI Attorney

    What a great pitched game by Doc

  • DonS

    Believe it or not, the Giants ended up leaving $18 million Barry Zito off their first round playoff roster, in favor of rookie Madison Baumgarner. Hmmm.

  • DonS

    Believe it or not, the Giants ended up leaving $18 million Barry Zito off their first round playoff roster, in favor of rookie Madison Baumgarner. Hmmm.

  • Econ Jeff

    DonS @13- Didn’t know that, but I can believe it. Zito isn’t pitching as well as Baumgarner right now (ERA 4.15 vs. 3.00). Not to mention Zito’s 4 straight losing seasons with SF.

  • Econ Jeff

    DonS @13- Didn’t know that, but I can believe it. Zito isn’t pitching as well as Baumgarner right now (ERA 4.15 vs. 3.00). Not to mention Zito’s 4 straight losing seasons with SF.


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