The exclusive club of Major League franchises that have never thrown a no hitter nearly got a little smaller this weekend.
The Tampa Bay Rays’ James Shields through a complete game, one-hit shutout Friday night, nearly dropping that franchise off a four-team list that includes the Rays, the New York Mets, the San Diego Padres and the Colorado Rockies.
The Rays, formerly known as the Devil Rays, began play in 1998, so their tally pales in comparison to the Mets’ 46-year-old count.
The amazing thing about Shields’ performance is he had no run support – at least until the very end. The game was scoreless until the bottom of the ninth when Evan Longoria hit a two-run dinger to give Tampa Bay a 2-0 victory.
It was the first time in Major League history that a team won a nine-inning, one-hit shutout with a walk-off homer, according to a Tampa Tribune story, quoting the Elias Sports.
Shields gave up only a third-inning single to center by the Angels’ Brandon Wood and hit Erick Aybar with a pitch in the fourth.