OAKLAND (AP) — Max Muncy was retired on a running catch in his first at-bat Thursday. Then was thrown out at first base by Colby Lewis when he tried to reach on a bunt.
Muncy finally broke up Lewis’ no-hit bid for Texas with a leadoff double in the ninth inning that glanced off right fielder Nomar Mazara’s glove in the Rangers’ 5-1 victory over the Oakland Athletics.
“Nobody wants to get no-hit,” Muncy said, recalling he then thought to himself: “OK, we broke it up. Now let’s get some runs.”
Lewis was perfect until walking Yonder Alonso with two outs in the eighth. Muncy led off the ninth with a drive to deep right field.
Mazara, a rookie who made a nice running catch to rob Muncy in the third, ran hard as he angled back to the corner. Mazara tracked down this ball but couldn’t hold onto it as he crashed into the padded wall.
Mazara looked at his glove as he retrieved the ball. Official scorer David Feldman immediately called the play a double, ending Lewis’ quest for Texas’ first no-hitter in 22 years.
Two batters later, Lewis (6-0) lost his shutout when left fielder Ryan Rua couldn’t make a diving catch on a blooper by Coco Crisp that went for an RBI double.
Last September, the 36-year-old Lewis also took a perfect game into the eighth against the A’s. Danny Valencia broke that up with a leadoff double.
Lewis was aiming for Texas’ first no-hitter since Kenny Rogers threw a perfect game in 1994. The A’s haven’t been no-hit since four Baltimore pitchers combined to do it in 1991. That’s the longest stretch any big league team has gone without being held hitless.
Lewis was barely threatened the first eight innings as he got the A’s to swing early in counts and only got to three balls three times in the first seven innings. He needed just 16 pitches through the fifth and sixth innings, retiring Muncy on a bunt attempt in the sixth.
“I wasn’t concerned with it,” Lewis said. ‘He bunted it right back to me. Got a quick out, two-pitch out.”
Lewis’ bid for perfection ended when he walked Alonso on four straight pitches with two outs in the eighth. Rua then made a jumping catch on the warning track to get Lewis out of that inning.
Lewis flirted with a no-hitter late last season at home against the A’s, finishing with one of his three career two-hitters. Daniel Mengden (0-2) allowed two runs — one earned — and four hits in 6 1/3 innings of his second career start.
“Obviously it’s frustrating,” A’s catcher Stephen Vogt said. “It’s never fun when you have your starter go that deep and give you a chance to win, let alone getting no-hit into the ninth. Colby was that kind of good today. Not one pitch over the middle today. Everything was in the outskirts of the zone. He was really good. Tip your cap to him.”
Rangers: RHP Yu Darvish, on the disabled list since June 9 with shoulder soreness, will join the Rangers in St. Louis this weekend but it’s not clear when he’ll start his throwing program, manager Jeff Banister said.
Athletics: Oakland still hasn’t announced a starter for Saturday’s game against the Angels to replace LHP Sean Manaea, who’s on the DL with a strained left forearm. RHP Henderson Alvarez, who underwent shoulder surgery last July and is scheduled to throw a 70-pich rehab game on Saturday, was an option for Saturday’s game, but manager Bob Melvin said trainers advised against it.
Rangers: LHP Cole Hamels has won seven straight road decisions for Texas heading into Thursday’s game at the St. Louis Cardinals.
A’s: RHP Kendall Graveman is 0-1 with a 2.12 ERA in three starts against the Los Angeles Angels. He’s pitched fewer than than five innings in each of his last two starts and three of his last four.