CHICAGO >> Francisco Liriano pitched the major leagues’ first no-hitter of the season, throwing his first career complete game in the Minnesota Twins’ 1-0 victory over the Chicago White Sox on Tuesday night.
Liriano (2-4) walked six and struck out two, throwing 123 pitches in the 95th major league start for the 27-year-old left-hander.
He survived a rocky ninth inning that began when Brent Morel grounded to shortstop and Matt Tolbert made a one-hop throw that first baseman Justin Morneau scooped. Juan Pierre walked and Alexei Ramirez popped to shortstop.
Liriano fell behind Adam Dunn 3-0 in the count, then got a pair of strikes. After a foul ball, Dunn lined out to Tolbert as Liriano and his Twins teammates celebrated at the mound.
"I can’t explain it. I feel so nervous and so happy right now," Liriano said. "I can’t explain my feeling right now."
Liriano threw just 66 of 123 pitches for strikes but kept Chicago off-balance in a game that took just 2 hours, 9 minutes.
In his previous start, he lasted just three innings in an 8-2 loss to Tampa Bay. The shutout lowered his ERA for the season to 6.61.
It was the seventh no-hitter for the Twins-Washington Senators franchise and the first since Eric Milton’s against the Angels on Sept. 11, 1999. It was the first no-hitter in the major leagues since Philadelphia’s Roy Halladay’s against Cincinnati in last year’s NL division series.
The White Sox were no-hit for the 13th time, the first since they were beaten by Kansas City’s Bret Saberhagen on Aug. 26, 1991.