Joe Musgrove became the first Padres player ever to throw a no-hitter on Friday when San Diego faced the Texas Rangers. This is a monumental accomplishment, but it’s even more significant for Musgrove, who grew up as a fan of the team.
The right-hander was born in El Cajon, California, which is 20 minutes away from Petco Park, the home of the Padres.
Musgrove did not shut out the Rangers in San Diego, but the outing still could not have been more significant. The El Cajon native threw nine innings and struck out in ten to claim his first career no-hitter at Globe Life Field in Arlington, Texas.
“The city of San Diego has shown me so much love, even before I came to the Padres. Just a San Diego kid that made it to the big leagues, so it feels even better to do it in a Padres uniform and selfishly be able to do it for my city and know that the kid from Grossmont High threw the first no-hitter.”
Joe Musgrove: The Day Before the Start
Joe Musgrove did not feel well on Thursday, and it caused his sleep to be impacted. He woke up stiff, which can be detrimental for a pitcher on start day.
If you had told Joe Musgrove that he would throw the first no-hitter in Padres’ history before the game, he would have said that you were crazy.
The pitcher went to the yard and started his regular pregame routine, but Musgrove could not find his groove. He started chugging water to help his body loosen, which did help. However, he had to fight the bathroom urge during the game.
Musgrove said that battling his bladder was one of the most challenging parts of the evening in the postgame presser.
Joe Musgrove: Battling his Bladder
Why did Joe Musgrove not go to the bathroom once he took the hill?
He was no hitting the Rangers through four innings, and he did not want to mess with superstition.
It’s good Musgrove did not go to the bathroom because he proceeded to toss another five hitless innings to complete the first no-hitter in Padres’ history. It’s not like San Diego’s franchise was established yesterday.
The Padres joined Major League Baseball in 1969, so Joe Musgrove did something that nobody was able to do for over 50 years.
San Diego was the only team in baseball history that had not recorded a no-hitter before Friday, but this is no longer the case, thanks to Joe Musgrove.
Joe Musgrove: The Performance
Musgrove threw 112 pitches on Friday, with 77 of them being recorded as strikes. The main weapons in his arsenal were his off-speed pitches.
Musgrove said that he did not think he would have a low enough pitch count to finish the job after the game. He knew he was hitless through six innings, but the pitcher stayed calm because he thought his night was going to end before the Rangers’ 27th out occurred.
When he realized he was only at 67 pitches at the beginning of the seventh inning, he was locked in one finishing the job. He stopped throwing his fastball and utilized his curveball and slider to finish the job.
Even though Musgrove posted nine hitless innings, he still did not feel like himself. He attested to the fact that he had to battle all game to execute his pitches.
Padres’ manager Jayce Tingler said,
“I think in a way that makes it, if it can be any sweeter, any more special for him, to do it growing up in San Diego and this being his team, it’s about the perfect story written.”
I do not think anyone could have summed it up better than Tingler.
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