Not Tanyon Sturtze, Bryan Rekar, Albie Lopez, Esteban Yan, Jorge Sosa, John Halama, nor Paul Abbott were able to do it. Dewon Brazelton, Casey Fossom, Tim Corcoran, and Jim Morris weren’t able to do it either.

The feat I am talking about is throwing a no-hitter for the Tampa Bay Rays. Up until last night, no pitcher was able to throw a no-hitter for the Rays, but then Matt Garza took the mound on Monday night.

Garza threw the first no-hitter in Rays history and the fifth no-hitter this season as the Rays beat the Detroit Tigers 5-0 on Monday night. Garza walked just one batter and struck out six in the 120 pitch effort.

What was interesting about this game was that Garza’s counterpart, Max Scherzer had a no-hitter through 5.2 IP. I have to admit, and with all due respect to my friend Charlie, dueling no-hitters are a lot better to watch than dueling pianos in Chicago.

Scherzer had his no-hitter attempt broken up in grand fashion—literally. Scherzer lost his no-no bid when Matt Joyce crushed a 3-2 fastball down the right field line for a grand slam.

Once Garza got the lead in the sixth, there was no stopping him. This start reminded me of his start in Game 7 of the 2008 ALCS against the Boston Red Sox. He was flat out dealing that night and he was dealing last night as well.

What was impressive about Garza’s start on Monday night was the way he worked up in the zone. Most pitchers are taught to work down in the zone, but Garza was more effective up in the zone on Monday.

Let’s take a look at Garza’s pitch chart courtesy of PitchFX.

As you can see, Garza was up in the zone all night. The dangerous location didn’t matter because his fastball had so much life on it, the Tigers’ hitters couldn’t square the ball up.

It was a very impressive start for Garza. He improved to 11-5 on the season and lowered his ERA to 4.05.

You can follow The Ghost of Moonlight Graham on Twitter @ theghostofmlg

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