stephen pryor

Pitcher of the Night: Six Seattle Mariners combine for no-hitter

Miami may have face-eating zombie cannibals and resurrected basketball Lazaruses, while Canada’s got a lockdown on perhaps the only real snuff video in recorded human existence. It’s been a weird week for the world, and the Seattle Mariners capped it off by throwing a six-pitcher no-hitter, and bask in those modifiers for a minute, before realizing, waittaminutewhat, six pitchers shared a no-hitter.

Seattle already destroyed the Texas Rangers for 21 runs when if anything, a sensible man would bet on the Mariners being inflected upon by what’s the class of their division. 

But to no-hit the Los Angeles Dodgers, who by a fluke of nature and chance owns the best record in the majors, is nothing short of impressive. 

Kevin Millwood, that veteran Kevin Millwood, whose likeness and appearance has graced every major league game because, fuck he’s been around forever, was doing Johan Santana, Jered Weaver and Phil Humber one better, cruising through six innings while walking just one runner, striking out six on 68 pitches. Millwood was carving the Dodgers up, and may have completed the no-hitter had he not had to exit after the sixth inning with a groin injury. 

And Seattle groaned. 

Can’t even get little moments of joy, like sweeping through those SoCal bastards and perhaps emerging as the delusional favorites to burst into the playoffs. We’ll leave that speculation to ferment for some time. 

But the Mariners weren’t done yet. Charlie Furbush, a guy who unfortunately was traded for Doug Fister and perhaps has the most perverse name brand since the days of Dick Pole, came in on short notice and got out of a clean two-thirds of an inning before ceding the no-hitter to Stephen Pryor, who despite walking two batters, got one out and was somehow awarded the Win. 

OK, but whatever. 

Lucas Luetge threw another out, before Seattle fans baited their breaths as recently demoted closer Brandon League took the mound to hold the lead, and the bizzarre series of events unfolding in La La Land. Five pitchers, a starter and four relievers have so far not allowed a single Dodger to reach on base via hit. After Millwood issued his only walk, no Dodger would reach base again until the seventh inning, three pitchers into Seattle’s roster, and only on two walks issued by Pryor, who nonetheless got out of the jam unscathed. 

League would look to rain all over his team’s parade. Seemingly nothing good has come out of League’s time in Seattle, from the way he was acquired, almost straight up for starter Brandon Morrow, to the way he’s failed to lock down a closer’s role that isn’t all the hardest to nail down. But League’s splitter regained its nasty, for at least two at bats. He struck one batter out, while issuing no walks. 

Tom Wilhelmsen, whom I only know because Sarah the Rabid Seattle Fan picked him up as a Shits to Michael Saunders’ Giggles early in the season for her fantasy team. Turns out he’s the new closer, and his stuff as well as peripherals show that he’s at least got a lock on that job for the rest of the year. He had the easiest inning since Milwood left, not counting League’s dominant two-batter appearance. 

And just like that Weird has been fostered in Seattle. Six guys combined to throw a no-hitter, to a catcher, Jesus Montero, who supposedly is no better defensively and as a game caller as, say someone who’s really, really into catching in your local semi-pro league. Nothing ever makes sense for Seattle, and the Mariners. Don’t expect things tostart becoming predictable for these whack jobs, and I mean that in a very endearing way.