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Any day listening to Vin Scully is one of the best things about baseball if not the best. Throw a no-hitter into the equation, the greatness level increases immensely.
That’s what happened late Tuesday night as social media blew up with all sorts of tweets about Scully and Clayton Kershaw’s evolving masterpiece against the Colorado Rockies.
With every strikeout, every curveball, every out and every word coming through on televisions, it seemed like it was destined to happen. When it did, the ending was perfect from Scully and from Kershaw as was everything building up to the conclusion of the Dodgers’ second no-hitter of the season.
The ninth began with Scully saying: “And now if you don’t mind, I’m going to sit back and watch it with you.”
It continued with him saying: “Fastball! And at 94 and there is a lot of petrol in the tank!”
That was followed by “Ellis would’ve run through a brick wall to catch that thing.”
Then it ended with Colorado outfielder Corey Dickerson striking out and Scully simply said: “A career high 15 strikeouts. Kershaw made six pitches in the ninth inning … you talk about getting it over in a hurry! Then Scully ended the broadcast of the no-hitter by saying:
“Got’Em! He’s done it!”
“Kershaw writes his name in the history book. Hope you enjoyed the ride. Good night, everybody.”
It was not only a good night for Kershaw, but also the Dodgers and baseball. It was a great night, made even greater by social media’s presence, which would have been a sight to witness during Scully’s call of Sandy Koufax’s perfect game against the Cubs in 1965.
Kershaw was as close to perfect as you can get. Only an error by shortstop Hanley Ramirez prevented that or as Scully said:
“It’s the only blot on the escutcheon of Clayton Kershaw.”
Escutcheon has probably never found its way into a baseball or any other sports broadcast but Scully found a way to elegantly use it just like Kershaw elegantly pitched the franchise’s 22nd no-hitter.
Kershaw’s no-hitter came less than a month after Josh Beckett threw his in Philadelphia. The only thing missing from that was Scully, who doesn’t make East Coast trips any more, which makes the combination of Scully and a no-hitter in progress even that more special.
Making it more special is how flawless it was in the broadcast booth and on the mound from a legend, who called Don Larson’s perfect game and four no-hitters by Koufax.
Kershaw struck out 15 and didn’t walk anyone while throwing 107 pitches. He also threw 21 first pitch strikes, had one three-ball counts and generated 21 swings and misses.
His 15 strikeouts tied Warren Spahn (1960) for the most by a lefty in a no-hitter and is third-most in a no-hitter since 1900. Only Nolan Ryan (17 K’s in 1973, 16 K in 1991) had more.
Of course, it seemed like a night like Tuesday might be inevitable, especially since he has 40 strikeouts and one walk over his last four games.
And there seemed to be little doubt that he was going to finish it, especially when Scully introduced a graphic of Los Angeles no-hitters by saying: “Since we don’t believe in superstition, our job is to give you information.”
It was the seventh inning when social media began taking over, especially when Scully said: “Kershaw throwing a gem … I’m always saying to call your friends. You can text your friends, hashtag Kershaw. Twitter your friends, email your pals. When he goes to the mound in the seventh is when you start taking these things seriously.”
Scully would know. He has the experience of calling 19 no-hitters and three perfect games.
Throughout the game many players used social media to express their appreciation for what many baseball fans witnessed late Tuesday night.
It was everything you want in a no-hitter and made a thousand times better by Scully and Twitter.
“This is pretty special,” Kershaw said on SportsNet TV in Los Angeles. “I will remember this forever.”
“As far as individual games go, this is really special. To do it at home is more amazing.”
Baseball fans will also remember this forever and feel the amazement along with Kershaw and the rest of the Dodgers.