It’s one of those calls viewers won’t soon forget, perhaps never, hearing the thrill in the voice of South Pasadena’s Joe Davis, describing the history-making no-hitter on Fox Sports Wednesday night as starter Cristian Javier, pitching six strong innings, and the Houston Astros’ bullpen shutdown the Philadelphia Phillies in Game 4 of the World Series.
Javier, Bryan Abreu, Rafael Motero and Ryan Pressly all had a hand in it, orchestrating the first combined no-hitter in the World Series. It joins Don Larsen’s perfect game in 1956 as the only no-hitters over the 118 editions of the Fall Classic.
The foursome struck out 14 Phillies’ hitters, giving up only three walks on the night.
Javier was nearly flawless against Phillies’ hitters before Houston relievers mopped it up from there, Ryan Pressly getting J.T. Realmuto to ground out to Alex Bregman at third for the final out in the 5-0 Astros’ win.
“Realmuto, bouncing ball to third, picked by Bregman, throws across in time!” Davis told Fox Sports viewers, raising his voice. “The Astros have a World Series no-hitter!”
Unhittable, Javier threw 97 pitches, recorded nine strikeouts, gave up just two walks and struck out the side in the fourth inning.
“It’s funny,” Javier told Fox-Sports through translator. “My parents told me today I was going to throw a no-hitter, and thanks to God, I was able to accomplish that.”
A post-season no-hitter, the only other of its kind, was recorded in 2010 by Roy Halladay pitching for the Phillies against the Reds in Game 5 of National League Division Series and throwing it in the very same place where history was made Wednesday – Philadelphia’s Citizens Bank Park.
“A combined no-hitter is hard to do,” said Astros’ manager Dusty Baker when it was all over, “because usually somebody’s going to give it up during that no-hitter. So, all our guys were poised and ready and strong.”
The Astros’ win tied the World Series two games apiece in the best of seven series with Game 5 and added a third victory, 3-2, Thursday and are now one game away from claiming the title. Game 6 is set for Saturday night in Houston and Game 7, if necessary, on Sunday.
Along with his World Series duties, Davis is well known in these parts as the play-by-play broadcaster for the Los Angeles Dodgers, replacing the late legendary broadcaster Vin Scully in 2017.
Weighing in after watching the combined no-hitter was Mark Langill, also a South Pasadena resident, who knows a little bit – make that a lot – about Dodger history. He just happens to be the club’s longtime historian.
“During the game, I thought of the comparisons between Vin Scully and Joe Davis in terms of accomplishing so much at an early age in their respective broadcasting careers,” explained Langill. “And in Joe’s first World Series, of course there is a no-hitter, only the second in World Series history.”
Langill pointed out that Scully was on the air for the first one when Don Larsen of the 1956 New York Yankees had his perfect game performance against the Brooklyn Dodgers.
“Like Vin, Joe’s smooth style makes it sound so easy to call a major event on television,” added Langill. “But that result is the byproduct of hard work and preparation, which Scully learned from Red Barber at the start of his Dodger career in 1950. And like Vin, Joe has proven he can also broadcast football at the highest level of excellence.”