So, it wasn’t a no-hitter.
For 7.1 innings, Jake Arrieta kept us on the edge of our seats. Again. He was dealing, and he hadn’t allowed a hit. Hell, the only baserunner he’d allowed was a walk, eliminated on a stolen base attempt.
And then Brandon Phillips – of course, Brandon Phillips – doubled to left in the 8th inning, pausing to admire his work before running, and the no-hit bid was over. Matt Szczur tried his damnedest to make one of those catches that lives in highlight reels forever, but came up just short.
You know what, though? It was a crazy awesome performance, and better than may no-hitters. Don’t lose sight of that. The vagaries of balls in play make it such that a no-hitter is largely the province of pitcher skill, team defensive ability, and luck. There’s only so much a guy can do. And Arrieta did it all tonight. His stuff was crisp and his command was incredible, even through the 9th. The pitch to Phillips felt like his only missed spot on the night.
The offense also did some great things, humbling Johnny Cueto. It was an all-around awesome game, and I’m not going to let the fact that it wasn’t technically a no-hitter get me down. Go Cubs, man.