We take this break in the discussion of Kyle Schepel’s no-hitter to bring you up-to-date on the South Division pennant race. The Hops won last night, but Salem-Keizer also won. This means the Hops’ elimination number is one — a Hops loss or a Salem-Keizer win over Eugene over the season’s final two days, and the Hops’ pennant hopes are over. But, hey… the Hops are alive on the next-to-last day of the season, and if you’re alive then, anything can happen. Right?
Now, back to regularly scheduled programming…
Hear the final two innings of Kyle Schepel’s no-hitter on my personal site at http://www.RichBurk.com.
You can read the story I wrote after the game here.
And here are a few more notes on the gem by Schepel (pronounced “SKAY-pul”):
— Yes, it’s the first no-hitter by a Hillsboro Hop (which makes sense; they’re in their first season)… but the Hops’ predecessor, the Yakima Bears, never had a no-hitter (solo or combined) in their 23 seasons.
— It was Schepel’s second no-hitter this season. The first was a seven-inning no-no in the first game of a doubleheader for South Bend in Lansing, Mich. on April 14th.
— It’s the first no-hitter in the history of Boise Memorial Stadium, which opened in 1989. There have been approximately 970 games there, including the postseason.
— It’s the first nine-inning complete-game no-hitter in the Northwest League since July 17, 1993, when Glenn Dishman of Spokane threw one against Yakima. In the 20 years since, the only complete-game no-no in the NWL was a rain-shortened five-inn by Brad Hertzler of Vancouver against Spokane on July 18, 2007.
— It’s the second no-hitter in the NWL this season; the other was a combined nine-inning no-no by Tri-City over Salem-Keizer on July 20, thrown by Sam Moll (5 inn), Shane Broyles (2 inn.), Jerad McCrummen (1 inn.) and Trent Daniel (1 inn.)
— It was the 30th no-hitter in affiliated minor-league baseball this year. (Keep in mind there are more than 170 teams). Of the 30, it was the 14th complete game no-no (Schepel has two of them), and the eighth nine-inning complete-game no-hitter.
— Looking here, a quick scan from the bottom tells me — assuming the document is accurate — that it’s the first time a pitcher has recorded two complete-game no-hitters in one season since Bud Smith tossed a pair for Arkansas in the Texas League in 2000. Maybe one of my readers can research this document for other occurrences of multiple single-season complete-game no-nos? Hint, Hint?
— Boise entered the game as the top-hitting club in the Northwest League, leading the circuit in batting average (.274), home runs (49) and hits (674, 9.2 per game). I know what you’re thinking: But what about the guys in the lineup last night? The nine players in the lineup last night entered the game hitting a combined .280, with 38 of Boise’s 49 home runs this year.
And from a personal standpoint:
This is the fourth no-hitter I’ve called, but the first nine-inning no-no. Here they are:
May 14, 2002, Junior Herndon, Portland Beavers at Tacoma (7 inn.)
June 9, 2006, perfect game, Ryan Meaux (4 ip), Aquilino Lopez (2 ip), Cla Meredith (1 ip), Portland Beavers at Sacramento (7 inn.)
June 30, 2009, perfect game, Brandon Hynick, Colorado Springs vs. Portland Beavers (7 inn.)
Aug. 31, 2013, Kyle Schepel, Hillsboro Hops at Boise (9 inn.)
Let’s just hope it’s not Schepel’s final start this year, and that he gets one in the playoffs.
Go Hops. Go Eugene. Live another day.