Jake Arrieta tossed his second no-hitter on April 21, 2016 and all St. Louis Cardinals fans were filled with instant jealousy. The best fans in baseball nevertheless tipped the cap but when was the last Cardinal no-hitter?
The St. Louis Cardinals organization witnessed its first no-hitter in 1891. On April 21, 2016, the Chicago Cubs were able to revel in Jake Arrieta‘s second no-hitter of his career. A gigantic congratulations is due to Arrieta.
That said, to help make the Cardinals fans feel better, let’s take a quick look back at the no-hitters in Cardinals history.
The franchise’s first no-hitter, as is stated above, came in 1891 against the Louisville Colonels. First-career-start-pitcher Ted Breitenstein climbed the mound on October 4 and allowed only three baserunners in his no-hitter. The game finished with the Cardinals winning 8-0 which also stands as the largest margin of victory in the franchise’s no-hitter history.
Thirty-three years later on July 17, 1924, Jesse Haines pitched a no-hitter against the then Boston Braves behind a 5-0 win.
Fast-forward to September 21, 1934 when Paul Dean pitched the next Cardinals no-hitter. Dean commanded the zone against the Brooklyn Dodgers in New York. In this game, the Cardinals scored three runs in what was the first MLB no-hitter in 1,140 days which- at that time- was the longest no-hitter drought faced in history.
Lon Warneke was the next Cardinal to succeed in a no-hitter on August 30, 1941 against the Cincinnati Reds (2-0 win). Then, twenty-seven years later on September 18, 1968, Ray Washburn no-hit the San Francisco Giants for the Cardinals after the Cardinals had been no-hit by the Giants the day before.
The great Bob Gibson joined the no-hit parade by defeating the Pittsburgh Pirates behind an 11-0 win on August 14, 1971. Before we move on, I’d like to highlight that the superb Red Schoendienst was manager during the Gibson no-hitter and the Ray Washburn no-hitter. Genius? For sure!
Seven years later on April 16, 1978, Bob Forsch no-hit the Philadelphia Phillies then five years later on September 26, 1983 did it again against the Montreal Expos. In his second no-hitter, Forsch surrendered only two baserunners on a hit-by-pitch and error; these were the only things between a perfect game and Forsch.
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In 1999 (June 25), Jose Jimenez became the Cardinals’ ninth no-hitter against the Arizona Diamondbacks in Arizona. This game, a close one at 1-0, was the closest margin for the franchise’s no-hitters. Interestingly, ten days later, Jimenez shut-out the same Diamondbacks in another 1-0 game (allowing two hits this time around).
The Cardinals’ tenth and final no-hitter was recorded on September 3, 2001. Bud Smith stands as the last Cardinals pitcher to record a no-hitter by defeating the San Diego Padres in San Diego for Tony La Russa’s second no-hitter as Cardinals manager (La Russa’s first was with Jimenez in 1999).
Ten no-hitters. Let me repeat, ten no-hitters in the Cardinals franchise. This is incredible and worthy of praise. While Arrieta finished off his second career no-hitter joining a small stack of pitchers, he should be the proudest of the fact that these two no-hitters are in back-to-back seasons! That is impressive!
What do you think: will the Cardinals have a no-hitter pitcher this season? Will we fans have to wait seven years or more for the next Cardinals no-hitter? Follow me on Twitter and let me know your thoughts.