Michael Wacha almost etched his name in baseball history with a no-hit bid against the Washington Nationals on Tuesday night, but it was broken up with two outs in the ninth inning at Busch Stadium.
Nationals third baseman Ryan Zimmerman hit a bouncer up the middle that tipped Wacha's glove, and shortstop Pete Kozma couldn't make the throw to first. There was some initial questioning on the broadcast about whether it was a hit or an error, but it clearly looked to be a hit.
As ESPN Stats & Info notes, it's the third time this season a no-hitter has been ended with only an out to go.
Michael Wacha: 4th pitcher to lose no-hit bid in 9th inning in 2013, 3rd lost with 2 outs in 9th, joining Yu Darvish and Yusmeiro Petit— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) September 25, 2013
Confirmed by @EliasSports -- There have been 3 no-hitters broken up with 2 outs in 9th this season ... 1st time that's happened since 1990— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) September 25, 2013
The St. Louis Cardinals still won, 2-0, on the strength of Wacha's performance. The 22-year-old rookie had nine strikeouts versus just two walks before being relieved by Trevor Rosenthal for the final out.
It was only Wacha's ninth start of the season, and he is now a stellar 4-1 with a 2.78 ERA. ESPN's Buster Olney noted just how brief Michael Wacha's career has been up to this point.
Michael Wacha has been in professional baseball for 467 days. He's one out from a no-hitter.— Buster Olney (@Buster_ESPN) September 25, 2013
There's no doubting Shelby Miller will have a tough act to follow when he takes the mound on Wednesday.