Aaron Harang struck out five and walked six over seven stellar frames.
Flushing, NY (SportsNetwork.com) -
Aaron Harang saw his bid for a no-hitter end after seven innings due to a high pitch count, but two Atlanta relievers preserved his shutout and the Atlanta Braves blanked the New York Mets, 6-0, on Friday to open a three-game set from Citi Field.
Harang (3-1) struck out five and walked six over seven stellar frames, but after 121 pitches -- 70 of which went for strikes -- manager Fredi Gonzalez decided to pull his starter despite the no-hitter and turn it over the pen. Luis Avilan retired the first two batters he faced in the eighth before David Wright ripped a single to left for New York's first and only hit. Jordan Walden pitched a perfect ninth to finish it.
Harang, who struggled in 26 starts last season for the Mariners and Mets, has been terrific in four starts so far for the Braves. The 35-year-old righty has allowed just two runs and nine hits in 25 2/3 innings.
Atlanta nearly became the second team in the last three seasons to toss a combined no-hitter. The Seattle Mariners used six pitchers to accomplish the feat in a 1-0 win over the Dodgers in 2012.
Future starts now for Astros
By Chris Ruddick, MLB Editor
Philadelphia, PA (SportsNetwork.com) -
Kudos to the Houston Astros.
You won't hear that often this season, but the Astros made the right move on Wednesday, recalling super outfield prospect George Springer in an effort to not only jumpstart their woeful offense, but perhaps draw some interest in a team that is probably headed toward a fourth consecutive 100-loss season.
By calling up Springer now, he'll likely qualify for Super Two status and be eligible for arbitration one year earlier than he would have if he were called up after the Super Two eligibility date (usually not too long after Memorial Day).
Nobody would have blamed the Astros for waiting. Plenty of teams do it. It's not as if they are going anywhere this season. In fact, after losing a league- high 111 games last season, they are already tied for the worst record in the American League.