May 15 can be considered a day of no-hitters. No less than five were tossed on this day throughout the years.
Celebrating a birthday on May 15 are:
- John Smoltz; who won 213 games in his career without tossing a no-hitter.
- George Brett; who prevented many no-hitters by lashing out 3154 hits.
But anyway, here are the five May 15 masterpieces in chronological order:
1944: Clyde Shoun
This Reds lefty nicknamed "Hardrock" tossed his no-hitter against the Boston Braves. His counterpart on the hill was Jim Tobin, who just 18 days earlier pitched a no-hitter of his own. Tobin's walk was the only thing standing in the way of a perfect game. He also struck out only one...Shoun's MLB career began with the Cubs, and was included in the package sent to the Cardinals for Dizzy Dean in April 1938.
1952: Virgil Trucks
On May 15, the Tigers' fireballing Trucks tossed what would be the first of two 1952 no-hitters (the second one came August 25th at Yankee Stadium). Trucks hit two batters and walked one, while striking out seven. Incredibly, his two no-hitters accounted for 40 percent of his 1952 win total, and he finished the season 5-19.
1960: Don Cardwell
Two days earlier, the Phillies sent Cardwell to the Cubs in a four-player deal. Cardwell's first game with his new team, in game two of a doubleheader, resulted in a no-hitter over the Cardinals. The 6-foot-4 righthander struck out seven and walked one.
1973: Nolan Ryan
The Ryan Express tossed his first of two no-hitters on the season for the Halos (and also the first of seven in his career) against the Royals (it was George Brett's 20th birthday... but he didn't make his big league debut until Aug. 2). The big Texan struck out 12 and walked three.
1981: Len Barker
Barker's was the only perfect game of this list of five, and it came against the Blue Jays. The 6-foot-5 righty retired eleven by way of strikeout; in the Jays lineup that day was future NBA guard Danny Ainge.