Through June 3, 2017, there have been 296 no-hitters officially recognized by Major League Baseball, 252 of them in the modern era starting in 1901. Seeing one in person is a joy and a treat for any baseball fan, and even the close-but-no cigar games are memorable, as every out, every great play and every batter creates excitement, anticipation, and dread. No sport has anything like no-hitters.
On that June 3 date, four days ago, Edinson Volquez tossed the first no-no ( as they are colloquially called) this season, and the sixth no-hitter in Miami Marlins history, defeating the Arizona Diamondbacks. It was an unusual version of the breed because Volquez, a journeyman starter, had two baserunners who reached on walks and saw them erased by double plays. He needed only 98 pitches to complete the masterpiece.
This comes at a good time for the sad-sack Marlins, who have attendance problems, trust issues (the team twice dismantled a championship team to save money), bad luck (rising superstar pitching ace Jose Fernandez died in a boating accident at the end of last season), hero problems (Fernandez was driving the boat, he was drunk and on coke, and he killed two of his friends) and ownership uncertainty, for the team is for sale.
A friend living in Florida writes,
“The Miami Marlins selling tickets to a game that’s already been played? I suppose so you can frame them and claim you were at the no-hitter a Marlins’ pitcher threw on June 3rd. From the email they sent me, since I live in Florida and do attend three or four Marlins games a season:
“For those of you who missed attending the game but want to own a souvenir piece of history, unsold tickets from the game are still available by clicking here. Online purchases will be printed and mailed. Fans can also purchase tickets in-person at the Marlins Park Ticket Office.”
Of course, the unsold-then-sold tickets will diminish the value of the tickets owned by the fans who really attended the game, and the Marlins are, as my friend suggested, facilitating future lies. Never mind, though: this all about greed.
I attended the famous 6th game of the 1975 World Series, when Carlton Fisk hit his hone run off the left field foul pole in Fenway Park to win one of the most exciting and dramatic baseball games ever played. I kept my ticket in my wallet for years. The Boston Red Sox never tried to make a buck by making my fondest memory commonplace and selling tickets to the game after the fact. The Red Sox have had some no-hitters that were sparsely attended too, and the legendary game in 1960 when Ted Williams hit a home run in his final at bat in his final game was only seen by 10, 454. Thousands of fans who weren’t there said they were, and would have loved to have a ticket to back up their fantasy. But then the Boston Red Sox aren’t the Miami Marlins.
Pointer: Gregg Wiggins