ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. - Edwin Jackson was so wild early, there was no reason to think he would even finish the game, let alone throw the fourth no-hitter of the season. But he made it happen Friday night, throwing 149 pitches - the most in the majors in five years - in Arizona's 1-0 win over Tampa Bay, his former team.
No one had thrown that many pitches in a nine-inning game since June 3, 2005, when Washington's Livan Hernandez threw 150. "All's well that ends well. We stopped counting at about 115," Arizona manager A.J. Hinch said. "You do want to make smart decisions. You do have a chance at history and you don't want to take it away from him."
"He's a great athlete and a great kid. He's one of the very few who can do that," Rays manager Joe Maddon said, referring to the high pitch count.
"It's one of those moments where you're just caught up in the moment,'' Jackson said. "It's one of the craziest games I've had, especially the game starting off how it did. Not being able to find the strike zone with the fastball. Good thing I could throw the slider for strikes in any count. It resurrected my game."
Adam LaRoche homered off Jeff Niemann (6-2) with one out in the second. Jackson (5-6) walked eight, all but one in the first three innings, but the Rays still were no-hit for the third time since last July, including Dallas Braden's perfect game at Oakland on May 9. "It's one of those bittersweet moments. You throw a no-hitter and it's against your old team," Jackson said. "At least it's with a crowd that you've had accomplishment with and you can do in front of someone who will appreciate it." Colorado's Ubaldo Jimenez no-hit Atlanta on April 17 and Philadelphia's Roy Halladay tossed a perfect game at Florida on May 29. Armando Galarraga also lost a perfect game with two outs in the ninth on a blown call by umpire Jim Joyce.