10 least likely players to break up a no-hitter

From SABR member Chris Jaffe at The Hardball Times on January 23, 2012:

So close.

Not that it matters, but so close.

It’s happened many times in baseball history. A team pitches for nine full innings (or more) and walks away having surrendered just one hit. One hit allowed is almost always enough to win the game, but it’s always enough to keep a pitcher from making a bit of history.

All pitchers would like to throw no-hitters, but it rarely happens. A one-hitter sure beats a loss, but it’s got to be a bit frustrating. If only that one pitch had been a bit different, the game might have been something more than a simple victory.

Oh well. Oftentimes, the guy getting the hit is a star, perhaps even a Hall of Famer. More often he’s at least a solid player. Yeah, but then there are other times. There are times the guy isn’t a star or a role player. He’s someone who, well, sucks. Sometimes the player getting the hit is a guy who has no business whatsoever getting the hit. Yet he did anyway.

Let’s look them up. Who are the least likely batters to be that guy, the only batter standing between the pitcher and a no-hitter?

Since 1919, there have been 958 times in the regular season a team pitched at least nine innings and allowed exactly one hit. There are all also 10 such postseason games on record. So we’re looking for the least likely out of that bunch.

Read the full article here: http://www.hardballtimes.com/main/article/10-least-likely-guys-to-break-up-a-no-hitter/

Originally published: January 27, 2012. Last Updated: January 27, 2012.