On Sunday, the Cincinnati Reds were off to a terrible start to the season. Pitcher Hunter Greene pitched 7.1 no-hit innings against the Pittsburgh Pirates. Unfortunately, the gem from their top prospect was not enough for the Reds, who lost the game 1-0 despite the lack of hits from the Pirates.
“It would have been great to have a different result, but it is what it is,” said Greene.
According to Major League Baseball record-keeping regulations, the Reds’ feat did not qualify as a no-hitter since its pitchers did not finish at least nine innings.
“Sometimes you win games in weird ways and today we won one in a weird way. And if it’s a part of history, that’s fine because it’s still a win,” said Pirates manager Derek Shelton.
Greene used seven heaters at 100 miles per hour or faster, He displayed crisp sliders and efficient changeups. He was also fully aware of the potential no-hitter.
“To be honest, like in the third or fourth. But that’s the last thing I wanted to think about [because] it is really hard to just stay locked in and not think about those things,” said Greene. “I had the scoreboard right in my face and I was trying not to make eye contact with it, everybody was giving me my space and knew that I was locked in.
“But then again, there’s the mental part of, you know, ‘I’m fine. I’m not tired,'” said Greene.
Greene, the second overall choice in the 2017 amateur draft, was injured in 2018 and underwent Tommy John surgery in 2019. Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, he did not return to minor league play until 2021. He made it into the Reds’ roster for the first time this year after.
He established an MLB record of 39 pitches above 100 mph in his second start of the season. He entered Sunday’s game with a 7.62 ERA. He gave up 15 walks in 26 innings.
“I’m not focused on wins or losses this year. That’s not my focus,” said Greene. “You’ve got to embrace all the thoughts and emotions in that moment and just go out there and have fun. Hopefully, I’m going to have a lot more opportunities for that.”
Reds reliever Art Warren relieved and walked Ben Gamel to fill the plates. Following that, third baseman Ke’Bryan Hayes grounded out to second baseman Alejo Lopez, who muffed the ball before tossing it to shortstop Matt Reynolds for one out. Reynolds’ relay was a little late in getting the quick Hayes to first base.
“Maybe in a perfect world that ball’s hit a little bit harder to make it a little bit easier for him,” said Warren. “I tried to do the best I could and get a ground ball there. It’s just one of those things where it didn’t go our way.”
The Reds went down in order in the ninth inning at PNC Park, and there was no celebration for the team with the poorest record in the majors.
“I mean, to not even get a hit in a game and to get a win, I’m sure that hasn’t happened a lot since baseball’s been going on,” said Hayes.