For the first time since Jack Morris in 1984, a Tiger threw a no-hitter, and it came from the hurler with the best stuff for it. By striking out 12 and allowing just one ball in play out of the infield, Verlander marked his place in history with a 4-0 blanking of the Brewers Tuesday night at Comerica Park.
Verlander (7-2) has been putting together dominant starts for much of the season as he has worked together his changeup and curveball to go with an upper-90s fastball. He shut out the Rangers for seven innings in with six strikeouts last Wednesday at Arlington. On this night, all his pitches seemed to work, and the combination was impossible to solve.
The only two balls to reach the outfield were a line drive to center from J.J. Hardy in the second and a Corey Hart liner to short right that required a sliding catch from Magglio Ordonez. Everything else was either in the infield or strikeouts.
The only damage off of Verlander was of his own making, and it all came against same batter. Bill Hall drew walks in each of his three plate appearances, each time going to a full count.
Morris was the last Tiger to throw a no-hitter on April 7, 1984 against the White Sox at Comiskey Park. No pitcher had thrown a no-no in Detroit since Nolan Ryan at Tiger Stadium on July 15, 1973. No Tiger had thrown a no-hitter in Detroit since Virgil Trucks on May 15, 1952 at what was then known as Briggs Stadium.
Ryan was so nasty on that day at Tiger Stadium that Norm Cash went to the plate with a table leg instead of a bat. Nobody did that tonight against Verlander, but they seemed just as helpless.