The Twins are in the midst of a stretch of seven games in 13 days against the New York Yankees. Ten years ago, a different New York club nearly made history at Target Field.
Despite 2013 being a drab year for baseball in Twins Territory, I certainly experienced a lot of it in the early goings. After watching the Vance Worley Opening Day Experience, I was back a week later with the inter-league New York Mets in town. It was another cold (35 degrees at first pitch) late-afternoon Saturday contest featuring NY’s Dark Knight—Matt Harvey—against Scott Diamond (trying to re-capture his 2012 magic).
Four scoreless innings fled by before the Metropolitans went homer-single-single-double-single-single-single to start the 5th and grabbed a 4-0 advantage. After Chris Parmelee whiffed to close out the Twins 5th, I noticed a 0 in the H column for the home team.
The goose egg held for another frame as Harvey K’d fan-favorite Brian Dozier, fan-favorite Eduardo Escobar, and got decidedly-not-fan-favorite Aaron Hicks to fly out.
At this point, I was somewhat emotionally torn:
One one hand: a chance to witness a no-hitter in the flesh
On the other hand: having it happen against my preferred squad
Remembering the feeling of being white-washed by David Cone & David Wells in the late-1990s and then Jered Weaver in 2012, I was none too keen on another no-no.
After notorious no-hitter-breaker-upper Joe Mauer grounded out after Take Me Out To The Ballgame and Josh Willingham did the same (no, Pig), the count ran to two strikes on Justin Morneau. Seven batters from history—for better or worse.
But on a 2-2 offering, the current Bally Sports North color commentator turned on one and sent it out onto Target Field Plaza. No-hitter gone—shutout gone—Twins on the board! The crowd of 28,000+ stood up and roundly thumped their gloves together in the traditional Minnesota April Baseball Salute (TM).
Somewhat predictably—this is still 2013, after all—no more magic was in the offing. A brief trading of doubles between Mauer & The Hammer in the ninth inning was quickly snuffed by Mets closer Bobby Parnell to preserve their 4-2 victory.
Since that day, I’ve witnessed J.A. Happ—of all people—take a Target Field no-hitter into the 8th inning and beheld Joe Ryan blanking the Royals for seven frames. But for some reason—probably because I was cold, ornery, and on the verge of rooting for history over hometown—Morneau’s homer off Harvey is as clear in my mind as if it happened yesterday.
If an opposing pitcher is mere outs from history (no-hitter or perfect game), are you...
This poll is closed
Rooting for the Twins to break it up
Rooting for the ability to tell your kids and grandkids you witnessed history