A 19-year-old pitcher lost a no-hit bid and an 18-year-old record was shattered in the Augusta GreenJackets 2-1 extra-inning road win over the Lexington Legends tonight.
GreenJackets teenager Clayton Blackburn took a no-hitter into the seventh inning before giving up a two-out double on a hard-hit grounder down the first base line. The San Francisco Giants 16th-round pick struck out nine and walked one but missed out on a win after reliever Steven Neff gave up a game-tying solo homer in the eighth.
But Mark Minicozzi hit a solo home run of his own in the top of the 11th to break the tie. Reliever Keith Bilodeau sealed the win in ninth.
Though Blackburn’s no-hit attempt was lost, the GreenJackets did break a South Atlantic League record by posting their eighth consecutive game without committing an error. The previous record of seven was held by the 1994 Charleston (W. Va.) Wheelers.
Elliott Blair homered in the third for an early lead and Minicozzi’s second of the year helped the GreenJackets (22-28) snap a three-game losing streak.
Blackburn’s no-hit bid was the longest by an Augusta pitcher since Shawn Sanford took one into the ninth inning last season.
The last GreenJackets no hitter, the fourth in franchise history, was a joint effort from Sergio Romo, Osiris Matos and David Quinowski against Rome on August 10, 2006.