CHICAGO – On Sunday, the Pirates accomplished a feat that only five teams before them had been able to do in Major League Baseball history: win a hitless game.
Pittsburgh was able to score a run to beat the Reds 1-0 at PNC Park to saddle Cincinnati with another tough moment in a long season. They became the sixth team in history not to hit an opponent and lose.
White Sox fans know that very interesting feeling that Pirates supporters had on Sunday, because they experienced it 32 years ago.
On July 1, 1990, Andy Hawkins took the mound on a windy day at Comiskey Park and proceeded to pitch eight hitless innings against the hosts. The problem was that their outfield defense couldn’t catch the fly balls, and because of that, the White Sox scored four runs in the eighth inning to earn the win.
Hawkins was able to get the first two batters flying, but Sammy Sosa was able to catch up on an error by third baseman Mike Blowers. The pitcher would then walk Ozzie Guillen and Lance Johnson before Jim Leritz made the first error in the outfield.
He dropped a fly ball to left field on Robin Ventura’s bat that allowed all three runners to score to make it 3-0. Iván Calderón then lifted a fly ball to right field where Jesse Barfield also dropped it, allowing Ventura to return home to make it 4-0.
Meanwhile, the White Sox pitching was strong all afternoon, with Greg Hibbard throwing seven shutout innings with just four hits allowed. Barry Jones pitched a perfect eighth and Scott Radinsky did the same in the ninth to give the team one of the most unusual wins in its century of history.
Hawkins’ performance would only count as one no-hitter for one year, as Major League Baseball ruled that for it to count in the books, a pitcher must throw nine innings. But if he thought that game was painful for the pitcher, it was even worse in his next outing against the Twins at Yankee Stadium on July 6.
In that contest, Hawkins threw 11 2/3 hitless ball only to give up two hits and two runs in another loss.
Larry Hawley remembered that moment in this edition of #WGNTBT, and you can see it in the video above.
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