Ian Snell pitched the first no-hitter in Victory Field history, allowing only one base runner in the Indianapolis Indians' 4-0 victory over the Norfolk Tides on Sunday afternoon.
Snell (6-0) struck out nine and was so dominant that he was only one batter shy of perfection as he allowed just one walk, a fifth-inning pass to Ron Calloway. The right-hander told ESPN Radio, "I tried to mix my pitches and locations today. Our coaching staff helped calm me down late in the game. Everyone just told me to take a deep breath, and fortunately, that advice worked."
The last nine-inning no-hitter pitched by an Indians pitcher was thrown more than 30 years ago, on May 24, 1974, by Tommy Carroll. The first ever no-no at the Indians' Victory Field came just over a year shy of its 10-year anniversary, as the ballpark opened on July 11, 1996.
Snell, the Pittsburgh Pirates' 26th-round pick of the June 2000 draft, told ESPN Radio that he couldn't have done it, without his outfield, "(Left fielder Jon) Nunnally, (center fielder Chris) Duffy and (right fielder Graham) Koonce all made awesome catches in the outfield. It's really an honor to have those guys on my team. They are always there to back me up."
Nunnally was more than just a solid glove Sunday, as he hit a three-run home run in the second inning to give the 23-year-old Snell a cushion with which to work. Brad Eldred added a sacrifice fly in the bottom of the fifth to give
the Indians a four-run lead.
The Sean Casey bobblehead promotion might have drawn many of the 7,390 fans at the game to the park, but it proved to be Snell's day on this occasion. -- Rich Glanzer/MLB.com