Justin Verlander’s third career no-hitter resulted in a 2-0 win for the Houston Astros on Sunday, but more importantly, placed him in rarified air in MLB history.
On Sunday, Justin Verlander added another gem to his unquestionable Hall of Fame resume.
Throwing a no-hitter against the Toronto Blue Jays with 14 strikeouts, one walk and 120 pitches in nine innings, the Houston Astros ace notched the third no-no of his prestigious career, placing him in rarified air among baseball’s all-time greats.
In a dominant performance that resulted in a 2-0 win, Verlander completed the no-hitter when rookie third baseman Abraham Toro supplied the final out, as well as the ninth inning home run that broke a scoreless tie and allowed Verlander to make history.
It’s no surprise the future Hall-of-Famer sought out the rook after the no-hitter was complete. Impressively enough, his five fatest pitches of the day came in the final at-bat, per MLB Stats.
Of course, Verlander’s no-no was the main story of the day, especially for the history it cemented.
For starters, while 36 pitchers in MLB history have thrown multiple no-hitters, Verlander becomes one of just six pitchers to ever notch three or more. He joins Nolan Ryan (seven), Sandy Koufax (four), Cy Young (three), Bob Feller (three) and Larry Corcoran (three) in that category.
At age 36, what Verlander is doing this season is remarkable.
Sunday’s performance improved his AL-leading ERA to 2.56. He also made history before the no-hitter was even in the books, as his seventh strikeout of the day gave him 250 strikeouts on the season for the fifth time in his career.
Per ESPN Stats & Info, this makes him the fifth player in MLB history to accomplish that feat, joining Randy Johnson (nine), Nolan Ryan (eight), Max Scherzer (five) and Roger Clemens (five).
Furthermore, this was Verlander’s second no-hitter in Toronto, giving him more no-nos than the entire Blue Jays franchise and making him the only player in MLB history to record multiple no-hitters in the same opposing ballpark, per ESPN Stats & Info.
The Astros sit atop the AL West with an 89-49 record, trailing only the AL-leading New York Yankees by half a game. With Verlander throwing like he’s still in his 20s, Houston has to feel good about its postseason prospects.