There was a no-hitter in high school baseball over the weekend. The protagonist was Duksugo sophomore right-hander Kim Tae-hyung. It was a record in more than a year.
Deoksugo won 4-0 against Seoul District A Cheongwon Go in the second half of the weekend league at Guui Baseball Stadium in Seoul on Tuesday. Even more notable than the win itself was the performance of starting pitcher Kim Tae-hyung. He threw nine innings, allowing just two hits and no runs. He also struck out 15 batters.
It’s been a year and two months since a no-hitter in high school baseball. On April 24 last year, Jungang High School junior Kim Jae-hyun did it against Dongsang High School. Before that, the last time it was accomplished was by Shin Jun-hyuk of Baejae High School in 2017, more than five years ago.
No-hitters are rare at the high school level, but they are even rarer in the professional baseball, where players’ skills have been leveled upward. In its 41-year history, only 14 pitchers have made it into the record books, and no pitcher has done it twice.
The first no-hitter in professional baseball was thrown by Hae-Tae Tigers’ Soo-Won Bang in 1984, just two years after the league’s inception. The no-hitter, which occurred about once every 1.5 years until Song Jin-woo of the Hanwha Eagles in 2000, fell silent for the next 14 years. Charlie Shreck broke the silence in 2014 with the NC Dinos, and three more have since, including Samsung Lions’ Derek Maguire in 2019, but all were foreign pitchers. The streak of native no-hitters ended 23 years ago.
There is an inevitability to this trend. Modern baseball’s emphasis on pitch count management and a strict division of labor in the starting rotation is part of the reason. After tossing 21 complete games in the league a decade ago in 2013, he remained in the high teens to low 20s through 2019 before plummeting in 2020. Last year, there were just six.
In fact, there hasn’t been a single instance this season where a 10-team starter has thrown nine complete games through the 11th day. SSG Landers’ Oh Won-seok was the only one to complete a seven-inning, one-run complete game in a rainy cold game 스포츠토토.
However, as we’ve seen with foreign pitchers, there’s no reason why a broken record can’t be resurrected with quality pitching. The conditions aren’t bad for pitchers, including a wider strike zone. The average run per game this season was 8.64 before today, the lowest in 11 years since the 2012 season (8.23).
Duksugo’s Kim Tae-hyung’s no-hitter was made possible by a special rule that takes into account the waiting list. High school baseball has a 105-pitch limit for a single game, but it can be exceeded if a no-hitter or perfect game is in progress.