In terms of audience reach, South Bend Silver Hawks RHP Blayne Weller couldn’t have picked a much bigger minor-league stage on which to throw the game of his life.
Weller no-hit the Dayton Dragons in a game televised nationally Thursday on the CBS Sports Network.
It wasn’t a completely spotless game for the Silver Hawks, who won 7-1. In the 2nd inning, Weller walked Dragons CF Phil Ervin, who stole second base and scored on a two-base throwing error by SS Andrew Velazquez. Weller walked one other batter, in the 4th inning, but otherwise pitched a flawless game that included 12 strikeouts.
It was somewhat surprising to see him take the mound to start the 9th inning because he needed 111 pitches to get through the first eight frames. (He ended up throwing 125 pitches.) At the same time, Weller seemed to be getting stronger as he went deeper into the game; according to the Dragons, Weller’s fastball was consistently clocked at 94 mph throughout the game and reached 95 mph several times in the final frame.
It is the sixth no-hitter by the South Bend franchise and the second at Dayton’s Fifth Third Field. It is the second no-hitter thrown in the Midwest League this season.
Velazquez reached base four times (three walks and a triple) to extend his on-base streak to 69 consecutive games. The Minor League Baseball record is 71 games, set by Kevin Millar in 1997 and tied by Kevin Youkilis in 2003. The Major League Baseball record is 84, set by Ted Williams in 1949.
Velazquez, who turns 20 on Monday, could tie the MiLB record on Saturday against the Fort Wayne TinCaps, who lost their 12th consecutive game Thursday.