In one of the most bizarre outcomes of a baseball game I have seen in my 40+ years of baseball fandom, the Rocket City Trash Pandas’ pitchers threw a no-hitter Saturday only to lose the game by a score of 7-5.
That’s right. The Lookouts scored seven runs on zero hits. Allow me to explain:
Because of bad weather Friday night, the Friday game was moved to Saturday at Toyota Field, so the Trash Pandas had to play two 7-inning games against Chattanooga. And despite only posting one hit over the course of two games, the Lookouts game away with a split.
The first game of the doubleheader was the weird one. Trash Pandas starting pitcher Coleman Crow pitched brilliantly over six innings, allowing no hits and walking just two batters. He was pulled from the game despite the no-hitter in progress — something happens more often now with the use of advanced analytics in baseball — and that’s where everything fell apart.
The Trash Pandas were leading 3-0 when Crow exited the game. In one inning, Chattanooga scored 7 runs on zero hits. Reliever Ben Joyce did get the first two outs of the 7th innings, but walked four batters. Here’s how it went down from there:
- Error (2 runs score)
- Hit by pitch, loading the bases with a 3-3 tie.
- Hit by pitch (now 4-3)
- Hit by pitch (now 5-3)
- Walk (now 6-3)
- Wild pitch (now 7-3)
- Hit by pitch
The Trash Pandas did manage to score two runs in the bottom of the 7th, but it was not enough to make up the deficit.
The second game of the doubleheader was less dramatic, but was also dominated by Trash Pandas starting pitching. Rocket City starter Sam Bachman gave up just one hit while striking out nine Lookouts in 5 innings. The Trash Pandas were able to win the game 3-0.
Making history in a bad way
The no-hitter in the first game made history in a somewhat dubious way. This was the second time in professional baseball history — we’re talking about more than 150 years of history, folks — a team allowed seven runs in a no-hitter and lost. The only other known occasion came on August 31, 1948, when the Wellsville Red Sox no-hit the Lockport Reds in a 7-3 loss in PONY League play.
The Trash Pandas will be back home at Toyota Field Tuesday, April 18 against the Biloxi Shuckers. Get your tickets here.