Drew Smyly was on the verge of history when he retired the first 21 batters he faced, but the 22nd didn’t go as anyone at Wrigley Field had hoped — except for the Los Angeles Dodgers.
David Peralta dribbled a broken-bat swinging bunt along the third baseline that both Smyly and catcher Yan Gomes ran after. Smyly picked up the ball and looked to get Peralta at first, but Gomes collided with the lefty from behind.
Gomes looked to hop-step out of the way of Smyly, but he did so too late and ran into his pitcher.
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Both players fell to the ground — Smyly in some pain and Gomes in some agony — and Peralta reached base safely, ending the perfect game bid.
Peralta likely would have beaten the throw, but no one will ever know.
Smyly retired the next two batters before being taken out by manager David Ross after 103 pitches. He walked to the dugout to a rousing ovation from the Chicago faithful.
Smyly tossed 7⅔ scoreless frames and allowed just the one hit that left the bat at 32.9 mph and struck out 10.
The last perfect game remains Felix Hernandez’s with the Seattle Mariners Aug. 15, 2012. That year, there were three perfectos: Phillip Humber’s April 21, Matt Cain’s June 13 and Hernandez’s.
The last no-hitter thrown by one pitcher was back on May 10 by Reid Detmers of the Los Angeles Angels.
The Houston Astros had two combined no-hitters last year, one in Game 4 of the World Series for the third no-hitter in postseason history.
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The Cubs won the matinée, 13-0.