On Wednesday against the Orioles at Safeco Field, Hisashi, a Tokyo native, became the second Japanese-born pitcher in MLB history to record a no-hitter, joining Hideo Nomo, who accomplished the feat first with the Los Angeles Dodgers on September 17, 1996 against the Colorado Rockies and again with the Boston Red Sox on April 4, 2001 against Baltimore. Iwakuma, a 2013 AL All-Star became the first AL pitcher to toss a no-hitter since his teammate Hernandez spun a perfect game on August 15, 2012. There were 12 no-hitters (11 individual, one combined) in the National League since then, marking the longest streak of no-hitters thrown in one league since the inception of the AL in 1901. Each of the last three no-hitters in the AL have been tossed by the Mariners, with six pitchers combining to blank the Dodgers on June 8, 2012, preceding Hernandez's perfect game. Prior to Seattle, the last team responsible for three consecutive no-hitters in its league was the New York Yankees, who produced three straight no-hitters from 1996-99 (Dwight Gooden vs. Seattle on May 14, 1996; David Wells vs. Minnesota Twins on May 17, 1998; and David Cone vs. Montreal Expos on July 18, 1999). At the age of 34 years and 122 days, Iwakuma became the oldest AL pitcher to throw his first no-hitter since Cone threw his perfect game at 36 years old. Additionally, the crafty righthander became the oldest pitcher to throw a no-hitter since Hall of Famer Randy Johnson did so on May 18, 2004 against the Atlanta Braves (age 40). It was the 23rd no-hitter in MLB history by a pitcher 34-years-or-older. The no-hitter was the first complete game (88th career start) of the fourth-year Major Leaguer's career. Since 1914, Iwakuma is the 17th pitcher to throw a no-hitter in his first career complete game, and the first since Philip Humber of the Chicago White Sox pitched a perfect game vs. Seattle on April 21, 2012 in his first complete game effort.
Other noteworthy performances last week included the aforementioned Davis (.440, 7 R, 5 HR, 9 RBI) and Jones (.400, 8 R, 5 HR, 10 RBI) of the Orioles; Chris Sale (2-0, 1.26 ERA, 14.1 IP, 22 SO) of the Chicago White Sox; Johnny Cueto (2-0, 0.53 ERA, 1 CG, 1 SHO) and Eric Hosmer (.370, 8 R, 3 2B, 10 RBI) of the Kansas City Royals; and David Ortiz (.556, 6 R, 8 RBI, 1.000 SLG) of the Red Sox.
In recognition of his American League Player of the Week Award, Hisashi Iwakuma will be awarded a watch courtesy of Game Time, the leader in licensed sports watches, available at MLB.com.