I was lucky enough to be at Fenway Park when Clay Buchholz tossed a no-hitter against the Baltimore Orioles. It was a last minute thing occurring only because of a phone call on the day of the game from my best friend who was visiting from Florida.
The way that the game started, you never would have guessed that there would be a no-hitter thrown that evening. Buchholz hit a batter and had three walks total with two coming in the 5th when the Orioles got a runner to third before Jay Payton flied out to end the inning.
My friend noticed that there was a no-hitter in progress before I did and tried to tell me without telling me due to the superstition that you don’t talk about a no-hitter while there is one in progress. He wondered out loud if his ticket stub was in good condition and mentioned that Baltimore’s box score looked like a sideways snowman. Meanwhile, I’m completely clueless and wondering why the fans are going so crazy over each out when the Sox were up eight to nothing.
I finally figured out what was going on after the third out in the top of the 8th inning. At that point my friend and I were hoping that the Red Sox just swung at the first 9 pitches they saw so that Clay could get back out there and finish the deal. Buchholz was on a pitch count that he had already exceeded and each passing moment was another that could have seen the phone ring in the bullpen.
The Sox didn’t go down in order in the bottom of the 8th, but that wasn’t a bad thing because we got to see newly called up Jacoby Ellsbury hit a two run double. Seeing Ellsbury was what we were most excited about heading into the game.
When the 9th inning started, I started filming with my digital camera. That’s the video that you see in the upper left corner of the site. The video actually had 15 minutes of fame when I sent the link to Bill Simmons and he posted the link in his daily links section.
There’s usually a key defensive play in a no-hitter that you can point to and say that it saved the no-no. In this game it was a spectacular defensive play by Dustin Pedroia on a hard grounder up the middle by Miguel Tejada. Pedroia made a diving, backhanded play on the ball to retire Tejada.
Since the game, I’ve been collecting all of the cards that have been produced commemorating the no-hitter. I went to a card show today with the specific goal on my mind of picking up as many of those cards that I could find since all I had prior to that was the 2008 Upper Deck Season Highlights card. Today I found 5 new cards to add to the collection:
- 2008 Upper Deck Baseball Heroes #29
- 2008 Topps Heritage #369
- 2008 Topps Year in Review #YR151
- 2008 Topps Red Sox Set #2
- 2008 Finest Moments #FM-CB
One thing that I noticed is that Topps got a little lazy on three of the cards that I had. They used the exact same picture for the card from the Red Sox box set, 2008 Heritage and the 2008 Finest insert card. Something like this is a little more understandable since there’s a limited number of pictures to choose from, but was this the only picture Topps could get their hands on?
I’m not sure exactly how many cards there are out there in celebration of Buchholz’s no-hitter. I’m sure there’s got to be a card in Documentary, but it probably has David Ortiz pictured on it. As long as I keep discovering new ones, I’ll keep adding them to my collection.