"It was an easy ride," Jered Weaver said following his first career no-hitter.
Weaver finished second in Cy Young voting last season to Tigers pitcher Justin Verlander. I would say this is a good start for his vindication tour.
It was a special night regardless for the righty. Weaver is a California native who played his college ball at Long Beach State before making the 'bigs.' His wife and parents were all there to see him in his keystone performance on Wednesday.
"I was locked in for the most part," Weaver said. "My mom, dad, wife, this was awesome."
Weaver, who is now 4-0 on the season, strolled through the ninth inning, first facing Jamey Carroll, whom he retired on a routine fly ball, then striking out Denard Span while looking, and finishing his gem on an Alexi Casilla long fly ball in right field to Torii Hunter, who made the final out. Upon Hunter's catch, it was instant pandemonium on the field.
"Spiderman out there. I knew he had a bead on it," Weaver said of Hunter. "Casilla put a charge in it and Spiderman tracked it down."
"I'm at a loss for words right now. It hasn't kicked in yet," he said. "Thank you for all your support. Couldn't have done it without the defense. The guys were picking me up left and right."
As is true for most no-hitters, Weaver's as well almost didn't come into fruition. In the 8th inning, the Twins' Trevor Plouffe stroked a liner that hooked foul just a few feet before reaching the left-field foul pole.
Only two Minnesota batters reached base on Wednesday night; Chris Parmelee, who reached first base in the second inning after Angels catcher Chris Iannetta missed a passed ball on the third strike, and Josh Willingham, who walked with two outs in the seventh.
"He dominated us, there's no question about it," Span said. "He was doing everything. He kept us off-balance, changed speeds and finished strong."
It hasn't even been a year since the Angels last no-hitter. Ervin Santana pitched one against the Indians on July 27. Weaver's is the 10th in Angels history. It's also been less than two weeks ago when Phil Humber of the Chicago White Sox threw a perfect game in Seattle on April 21.
"Fastball command was good. Able to fill up the zone get some early strikes," Weaver said. "This is so surreal I can't even believe this."
Photo Credit: AP