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Orioles' John Means Reflects on No-Hitter: 'I Can't Even Put It into Words'

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured Columnist IVMay 5, 2021

Steph Chambers/Getty Images

Baltimore Orioles ace John Means threw a 12-strikeout no-hitter on Wednesday afternoon against the Seattle Mariners, and after the contest was a bit at a loss for words.

"To be honest, I can't even put it into words right now," he said after the performance on MASN (h/t David Schoenfield of ESPN). "I felt OK all game, didn't really have a changeup until the end, but glad I got it going."

Means may have not had his best changeup on the day, but his fastball was on point. He continued to pound it inside, and Seattle's hitters never had an answer.

"I have to be able to do that to get the changeup working," he said. "Sevvy (catcher Pedro Severino) called a great game. Those fastballs saved me."

It was one of the more dominant no-hitters you'll see. Means was so good on Wednesday that only a dropped strike three to Sam Haggerty prevented him from throwing a perfect game. 

MLB Stats @MLBStats

John Means is the first pitcher to throw a non-perfect no-hitter in which the team did not record a walk, hit by pitch, or error.<br><br>h/t @EliasSports pic.twitter.com/1QzpJqawck

SportsCenter @SportsCenter

JOHN MEANS HAS THROWN A NO-HITTER ‼️<br><br>Only one Mariner reached base and it was on a wild pitch after a strikeout 🤯 pic.twitter.com/M6qIRBTHPa

“I feel just very bad, but he still threw a no-hitter and we celebrate,” Severino said after the game, per Roch Kubatko of MASN.com. “I just think about, let’s complete this.”

Means, to his credit, wasn't sweating it.

“It’s fine, it happens to everybody. It’s not a big deal,” he said. “To get a no-hitter, I couldn’t care less that it wasn’t a perfect game.”

More important for Means was using the moment to think about his father, Alan Means, who died last year from pancreatic cancer. The pitcher said his father was on his mind throughout the game. 

Roch Kubatko @masnRoch

John Means said he looked at his glove, with his father's initials on it, before he went back out for the 9th inning. #orioles

“I said to myself, he wouldn’t care. He’s just glad that I’m having a good time,” he said. “The accolades and all that never mattered to him. But it was pretty special and I know he’d be proud.”

It was Baltimore's first individual no-hitter since Jim Palmer threw a no-no in 1969. The team's last no-hitter came in 1991, when Bob Milacki, Mike Flanagan, Mark Williamson and Gregg Olson combined to no-hit the Oakland Athletics. 

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