Thursday, September 3, 2015

King Felix Dominates with Perfect Game in 2014 Mariners Replay

It was like deja vu all over again ... as Felix Hernandez threw his second perfect game in three years at Safeco Field.

This time, King Felix dominated the Astros in an 11-0 victory on May 23, 2014 during an APBA baseball game replay of the Mariners' 2014 season. (In real life, Hernandez tossed his perfect game Aug. 15, 2012 in a 1-0 win over the Tampa Bay Rays.)

Against the Astros, Hernandez finished with 15 strikeouts, including shortstop Jonathan Villar for the final out of the game. Catcher Jason Castro and designated hitter Matt Dominquez each struck out in all three at-bats versus The King.

The Mariners' offense was led by third baseman Adrian Beltre, who went 5-for-5 with a double, a home run, three runs scored and five RBI. Ichiro Suzuki added three hits, scoring a pair of runs, hitting two doubles and stealing a base. In all, the Mariners pounded Houston's pitchers for 14 hits.

Compiling double digit hits is practically a given every game for this Mariners lineup, which is comprised of the team's all-time greatest players, from Ken Griffey Jr. in center field to Edgar Martinez at DH. Second baseman Robinson Cano opened the scoring in this game with a two-run home run in the first inning. First baseman Alvin Davis broke the game open in the fifth inning with a two-run double that extended the M's lead to 7-0.

The victory, the team's 11th in a row, moved the Mariners' win-loss record to 41-6 on the season, as they continue to crush their opponents almost every outing. And just a month earlier, Randy Johnson hurled a no-hitter against the Marlins in Miami. So their pitching has been OK, too.

For me, this was the second time I had experienced King Felix tossing a perfect game, though I must say the "actual" game against the Rays was a tad more dramatic! My wife and I had the good fortune to be in Seattle back in August 2012 and just happened to stop by for the afternoon game before heading back to our home in Oregon.

And back in the day in what very well may have been my first MLB game, I witnessed Steve Busby's second no-hitter. I was one of 9,019 fans at old Milwaukee County Stadium on June 19, 1974 who saw Busby and the Royals defeat my beloved Brew Crew 2-0.

As an 11-year-old grade schooler I remember leaving the stadium disappointed that the Brewers had lost ... again. (They went 76-86 that year, though they had the beginnings of their Bambi's Bombers days with the arrival of Robin Yount, Don Money and Gorman Thomas ...)

I recall my dad responding with something like ... "The Brewers may have lost, but you got to see some baseball history tonight ..." (About five years earlier, he had had the good fortune to be at Wrigley Field for Ken Holtzman's first no-hitter, a 3-0 win over the Braves on Aug. 19, 1969.)

The way things are going in this Mariners replay, I have a feeling that Felix just might get that elusive first 20-win season ... Now that would be some history!

(Note: As of this blog post, the Mariners have gone on to build a 69-16 record and Felix stands at 16-0! For the complete stats, click here.)