No Hitter (Answer to Friday’s Question)
We had several correct answers to our question on Friday. Good job to those who answered and thanks for sending your comments! If you didn’t get a chance to read the answer in the comments yet, here it is:
Yes. It is indeed possible for a pitcher to pitch a no-hitter and still lose the ball game. This can happen if a batter takes his base due to an error or if the pitcher either walks or hits the batter. Either way the batter gets on base without a hit. Then through a series of more walks, hit batters, or errors, a player can make it home and score a run. If the no-hit pitcher’s team doesn’t score during the game — they lose!
And just as our resident baseball expert Trent Okerson explained, believe it or not this actually happened on April 23, 1964. Ken Johnson, pitcher for the Houston Colt .45’s (anybody remember them?), holds the dubious honor of being the only pitcher to lose a no-hitter. He was beaten by the Cincinnati Reds when a batter who made it on base due to an error, crossed home plate on a groundout and another error. The .45’s went on to lose the game 1-0. Oh yeah – the player’s name who scored? Pete Rose.
This no-hit game was later described as the saddest story all year. Actually, it reminds me of another sad story that could be called the saddest in the Bible. The first three gospels tell us the account of a rich young man who ran to Jesus, asking him what he could do to inherit eternal life. Jesus responded by telling him to keep the commandments. The young man replied he had done this since he was a small child. Then Jesus said he still lacked one thing — he should sell all his possessions and give the money to the poor. At this, the young man went away very sad because he had many possessions.
Here was an example of someone who had pitched a no-hitter all his life and still lost the game. Since his time as a little boy when he first knew the difference between right and wrong, he readily kept all the commandments. But when it came time to finish the game strong, he couldn’t follow Christ’s example.
In my Christian life, I can totally relate to both Ken Johnson and the rich young man. Honestly, I really do try to play my best game possible. But in doing so, it’s easy for me to lose my no-hitters. I become so wrapped up in being what a Christian is that I simply miss doing what a Christian does. In essence, I pitch a no-hitter but still lose the game.
How about you? Ever lost any of your no-hitters? I’ve learned from experience that a win doesn’t come by merely following Christian rules. A win comes by following Christ’s example. After all, he pitched a perfect game.
Live The Mission,