ESPN News Services4 Minute Read
SAN FRANCISCO — Alex Cobb came within one out of a no-hitter before Spencer Steer doubled with two outs in the ninth inning of the San Francisco Giants’ 6-1 win over the Cincinnati Reds on Tuesday night.
Cobb came oh-so-close to the majors’ fifth no-hitter this year, dazzling to shut down Cincinnati before Steer’s double provided the Reds’ only run.
Fans cheered the 35-year-old right-hander after the hit with chants of “Alex Cobb!” After the final out, Cobb hugged teammates and coaches and acknowledged the crowd.
Center fielder Austin Slater had made the defensive play of the game when he chased down a shallow fly ball by Will Benson with a diving catch in left-center to end the eighth, as Cobb raised both arms in celebration.
He just missed tossing San Francisco’s first no-hitter since Chris Heston on June 9, 2015, at the Mets.
“It’s still fun,” Cobb said afterward. “I wasn’t mad or sad, I was just like, ‘Let’s just finish this thing off.’ That kind of thing. So many things have to go right for it to happen.”
After getting Noelvi Marte’s first-pitch flyout to start the ninth, Cobb (7-5) issued a one-out walk to Nick Senzel before another fly to right by TJ Friedl. Then Steer came through with an opposite-field hit.
A run scored on the double, and Cobb threw a called third strike past rookie Elly De La Cruz on his 131st pitch for his eighth strikeout. The 131 pitches were the most in Cobbs’ career and the most by any pitcher in the majors this season.
Senzel was credited with a single in the third inning on a two-hopper that third baseman Casey Schmitt snagged with a backhand grab. The rookie’s throw from foul territory was high and pulled a leaping J.D. Davis off the first-base bag.
Official scorer Chris Thoms originally called the play a hit, then changed it to an error several minutes later.
Fans in the crowd of 26,078 leapt to their feet and cheered as Benson stepped in to face Cobb with two outs in the eighth. After going ahead 0-2, Cobb threw two straight balls to make the count 2-2 before Benson lofted a shallow fly into left-center as Cobb threw a fourth straight splitter. Slater sprinted nearly 20 feet to make the diving catch, which was immediately challenged by the Reds.
The play went to replay review, and when crew chief Bill Miller announced moments later, “The call on the field stands,” the crowd roared.
Patrick Bailey hit a two-run homer to help Cobb win for the first time in nine starts since July 5.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.