Recapping every Red Sox no-hitter in history

March 14th, 2019

The Red Sox are rich with history, especially when it comes to elite pitching. Boston has accomplished 18 no-hitters -- tied with the White Sox for the second-most of any MLB team.

Here is a breakdown of the franchise’s story-filled no-hitter history.

May 19, 2008: Jon Lester
Red Sox 7, Royals 0

When the game ended, manager Terry Francona sprinted to the mound to embrace his 24-year-old Lester. Less than two years after he was diagnosed with anaplastic large cell lymphoma, Lester threw a no-hitter.

“To watch him do that tonight was beyond words,” Francona said after. “What a story. You feel like a proud parent.”

Lester allowed two walks and threw a career-high 130 pitches to seal his place in history. He later said that game had some of the loudest cheers he’s heard at Fenway.

Sept. 1, 2007: Clay Buchholz
Red Sox 10, Orioles, 0

“Doesn’t matter if he throws a no-hitter,” Francona quipped before Buchholz’s first career start. “He’s going back down.”

Buchholz was indeed sent back to the Minors after his debut, but the 23-year-old returned to the Red Sox roster to make his second Major League start 15 days later while Tim Wakefield was out with a sore back. And as Buchholz took to the mound a second time, he gave the ultimate answer to Francona’s joke by throwing a no-hitter, becoming the 22nd rookie to accomplish the feat.

April 27, 2002: Derek Lowe
Red Sox 10, Rays 0

Lowe walked just one and struck out six, and he did so one year removed from a demotion to the bullpen. As he spoke to the Fenway crowd of 32,837 afterward, Lowe thanked the city for standing behind him.

“It’s surreal,” Lowe said after pitching the first no-hitter at Fenway in 37 years. “I still don’t think I did what I did, as crazy as that sounds. I still think it happened to somebody else because you don’t ever think something like this can happen to you.”

Then, Red Sox officials asked him for an item from the day to add to the Hall of Fame.

“Now, I can go there and see a grubby old hat and a pair of shoes and say, `Yeah, I pitched a game to get in there,’" Lowe said.

April 4, 2001: Hideo Nomo
Red Sox 3, Orioles 0

In his Red Sox debut, Nomo pitched the first no-hitter at Oriole Park at Camden Yards, and did so on the earliest calendar date in history. It was Nomo’s second no-hitter; his first was for the Dodgers at Coors Field in 1996. He is one of just four pitchers to throw a no-hitter in both the AL and NL.

Sept. 16, 1965: Dave Morehead
Red Sox 2, Indians 0

As Morehead sat in the dugout, no one mentioned his no-hitter at stake. That is, no one playing for the Red Sox.

“[Indians third-base coach] Solly Hemus started yelling to me about the no-hitter during the sixth inning,” Morehead said later.

One pitch went wide on a 3-2 count to spoil Morehead’s shot at a perfect game, but in front of a meager crowd of 2,370, Morehead completed the no-hitter with a frantic throw to first off of a grounder by Vic Davalillo, securing his place in Red Sox history.

Aug. 1, 1962: Bill Monbouquette
Red Sox 1, White Sox 0

One walk -- that’s how close Monbouquette came to pitching a perfect game, against a White Sox team with a lineup of powerful hitters. Monbouquette, who grew up outside of Boston, struck out shortstop Luis Aparicio to seal the deal, which marked one of just 36 strikeouts Aparicio was dealt that season.

June 26, 1962: Earl Wilson
Red Sox 2, Angels 0

When the game's final batted ball flied to the outfield, Wilson fell to his knees on the mound, praying. The ball landed in the glove of center fielder Gary Geiger, which sealed a sense of iconic history.

The 26-year-old Wilson, who was the first African-American to pitch for the Red Sox, became the first African-American pitcher in AL history to complete a no-hitter, which was witnessed by a crowd of 14,002 at Fenway.

July 14, 1956: Mel Parnell
Red Sox 4, White Sox 0

When did Parnell know that he would throw the Red Sox’s first no-hitter in 23 years?

“I knew it all the way,” he said afterward. “You’ve gotta know things like that. But, honestly, I didn’t worry about the no-hitter. I wanted the win.”

Maybe the better question is when did he realize the weight of his feat? That didn’t come until after the game, when cheers, accolades, phone calls, and $500 award trickled in. Parnell trusted his sinker for most of his pitches, and the decision paid off.

“Boy, it felt good to hear those people cheering me,” he said.

Sept. 7, 1923: Howard Ehmke
Red Sox 4, A's 0

Ehmke is one of just 10 pitchers out of the 231 on record (since 1908) to throw a no-hitter with one strikeout or fewer, when he held the A's hitless in a 94-minute game at Shibe Park.

After completing his no-hitter, Ehmke came within one controversial call by an umpire away from being the first pitcher to complete two no-hitters in consecutive starts.

Yankees hitter Whitey Whitt knocked a grounder that the Red Sox third baseman fumbled before throwing to first. Ehmke’s teammates and 15,000 fans believed the play was an error, but the umpire ruled otherwise to halt Ehmke from a would-be record-setting streak, which no other pitcher has been able to accomplish since.

June 3, 1918: Dutch Leonard
Red Sox 5, Tigers 0

The second no-hitter of Leonard’s career came one month before he left the Red Sox to join the Fore River Shipyard team to circumvent the World War I draft. Four years prior, Leonard set the record for the Modern Era's (since 1900) lowest single-season ERA, at 0.96, in 1914. Only Tim Keefe's 0.80 mark in 1880 is lower.

June 23, 1917: Babe Ruth (0 IP), Ernie Shore (9)
Red Sox 4, Senators 0

Ernie Shore wasn’t supposed to pitch nine innings the day he held the Senators hitless, but when Babe Ruth was ejected after punching umpire Brick Owens, the Red Sox had no choice.

Ruth walked the first batter he faced, then accused Owens of missing two balls. Owens told Ruth to go back to pitching, “or I will run you out of there.”

“You run me out and I will come in and bust you on the nose,” Ruth said.

“Get out of there right now,” Owens said. Ruth lunged toward him swinging both fists and punching Owens’ left ear before being dragged off the field by manager Jack Barry and several police officers. Ruth was subsequently suspended.

From there, Shore took to the mound and retired all 26 batters he faced and struck out two. His performance was not labeled a perfect game, since he was relieving Ruth, but it would have been the third such game of the Modern Era and the fifth ever if it counted.

Aug. 30, 1916: Dutch Leonard
Red Sox 4, Browns 0

Leonard’s first thought when he pitched the first no-hitter of his career?

“Send the news to mother," he said.

Only two Browns reached base that day, but neither got past second in Leonard’s stellar performance in front of a Fenway Park crowd of 8,000.

June 21, 1916: Rube Foster
Red Sox 2, Yankees 0

Foster and Cy Young are the only Red Sox pitchers to complete a no-hitter against the Yankees, and Foster was the first pitcher to throw a no-hitter at Fenway Park. He totaled three strikeouts while allowing three walks.

July 29, 1911: Smoky Joe Wood
Red Sox 5, Browns 0

"I have seen a lot of speedy pitchers in my time, but Joe Wood can make sparks fly better than anyone else I ever saw throw a ball,” Red Sox catcher Tubby Spencer said in 1909.

That dominance was on display during only no-hitter in Wood’s career -- a pitcher best known for his lightning fastball. But Wood considered the next season, 1912, the best of his career, when he won 16 consecutive games, tying Walter Johnson for the AL record.

June 30, 1908: Cy Young
Red Sox 8, Highlanders 0

At 41 years old, Young became the oldest pitcher to accomplish a no-hitter with the win over the Highlanders. That record stood for nearly 82 years until Nolan Ryan’s 1990 no-hitter at age 43. Young retired three years later, after the 1911 season.

Sept. 27, 1905: Bill Dinneen
Pilgrims 2, White Sox 0

By 1905, Dinneen’s pitching strength was fading, after seven years in the Majors had taken a toll on his arm. When he made his start that Sept. 27, it was coming off a full month of rest to recoup his sore arm. And on that afternoon, the righty struck out six to pitch a no-hitter for the Pilgrims. Despite his mounting fatigue, Dinneen went on to pitch for four more seasons before retiring in 1909.

Aug. 17, 1904: Jesse Tannehill
Pilgrims 6, White Sox 0

The only no-hitter of Tannehill’s career spoke to just one piece of the Red Sox pitcher’s skill. He was also known for his speed and hitting, playing outfield in 87 games and pinch-hitter in 57. His Aug. 17 gem marks the third no-hitter in AL history. He recorded three strikeouts while allowing one walk and hitting a batter.

May 5, 1904: Cy Young
Americans 3, Athletics 0 (Perfect Game)

Rube Waddell had a reason to be boastful. Three days before, the Athletics starting pitcher faced Cy Young in a game against the then-Boston Americans and won, 1-0. But that came to a halt on May 5, 1904, when Young stepped up to the mound and retired 27 straight batters -- pitching the perfect game.

It was the third perfect game ever, the first in AL history, the first of the Modern Era and the only perfect game in Red Sox history. Young would later say he considered that day the greatest game of his career.