Kevin Millwood was fantastic in his six innings Friday night.
The Dodgers faced six different pitchers Friday night, but didn't get a hit against any of them. Kevin Millwood and five Mariners relievers combined for a no-hitter against the Dodgers in a 1-0 win Friday night at Safeco Field.
It was the first no-hitter thrown against the Dodgers since Kent Mercker did the deed for the Atlanta Braves at Dodger Stadium on April 8, 1994. It should be noted the Dodgers did not get a hit on June 28, 2008 against the Angels, but since the Dodgers won that game at home it is not recognized as a no-hitter since the Angels didn't pitch nine innings.
It was the third no-hitter in Mariners history, joining solo efforts by Chris Bosio and Randy Johnson.
The best chance for the Dodgers at scoring came in the eighth inning, when Bobby Abreu and Jerry Hairston Jr. walked to open the inning. After they were sacrificed to third base, A.J. Ellis hit a bloop into short left field but Chone Figgins, in as a defensive replacement, was able to make the catch, which was too shallow to allow pinch runner Alex Castellanos to score from third base. Tony Gwynn Jr. struck out to end the inning.
Millwood was simply fantastic two times through the Dodgers batting order. Millwood faced the minimum 18 batters in six innings, needing just 68 pitches to do so. Millwood struck out six and the only batter he allowed to reach base was a Juan Rivera, who walked to lead off the fifth. But that lone baserunner was immediately erased on the next pitch, as Bobby Abreu grounded into a double play.
Millwood was cruising into the seventh inning with his no-hitter, but felt something on his first warmup pitch. He began to wind up for his second warmup but immediately stopped and walked off the mound. He left the game with a mild right groin strain.
Nathan Eovaldi wasn't as good as Millwood, but he had a fine start in his own right. Eovaldi's third start of the season was his best so far, with six scoreless innings, allowing five hits and two walks. He struck out six, but also needed 103 pitches and like Millwood was done after six innings, though for different reasons.
Eovaldi has started three times for the Dodgers. He has allowed five total runs, and the Dodgers have lost three one-run games.
With five straight left-handed batters due up for the Mariners in the seventh, southpaw Scott Elbert replaced Eovaldi on the mound, and started the inning with two straight strikeouts. Elbert got two strikes on each of the next three batters, but couldn't quite finish them off. Ichiro Suzuki hit a ground ball single past Jerry Hairston Jr. at second base, Dustin Ackley walked, and Kyle Seager hit a ball off Dee Gordon's glove for an RBI single.
Rookie Stephen Pryor, pitching in just his fourth major league game, walked two of the three batters he faced. Naturally, he picked up the win for Seattle, his first major league win.
Dee Gordon came very close to beating out a ground ball to shortstop to lead off the ninth inning, but he was called out.
Clayton Kershaw, plantar fasciitis and all, takes the mound for the Dodgers on Saturday in a 4:15 p.m. PDT start on Fox. Jason Vargas starts for Seattle, as the Dodgers search for their first hit of the series.
Home Runs: none
WP - Stephen Pryor (1-0): 1/3 IP, 2 walks, 1 strikeout
LP - Scott Elbert (0-1): 2/3 IP, 2 hits, 1 run, 1 walk, 2 strikeouts
Sv - Tom Wilhelmsen (3): 3 up, 3 down