Astros ace Verlander tosses no-hitter against Blue Jays, Houston wins 2-0
Houston Astros starting pitcher Justin Verlander throws against the Toronto Blue Jays during the first inning of their American League MLB baseball game in Toronto on Sunday, September 1, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Fred Thornhill
Tim Wharnsby, The Associated Press
Published Sunday, September 1, 2019 4:06PM EDT
TORONTO - Astros right-hander Justin Verlander threw his third career no-hitter Sunday as Houston defeated the Toronto Blue Jays 2-0.
Verlander struck out 14 batters with one walk over 120 pitches to no-hit Toronto (55-83) for the second time in his career. He also threw a no-hitter against the Blue Jays at Rogers Centre on May 7, 2011.
Verlander (17-5) coaxed Brandon Drury to ground out to short for the first out of the bottom of ninth, then struck out Reese McGuire and got a ground out to third from Bo Bichette for the final out. His teammates mobbed him on the field when the final out was made.
Verlander struck out the side in the eighth inning and retired the last 25 batters he faced in a 79-strike performance.
The Astros (89-49) broke a scoreless tie to give their Cy Young candidate some run support with a two-run homer from Canadian Abraham Toro in the ninth inning.
Alex Bregman greeted Blue Jays closer Ken Giles (2-3) with a bloop double down the right-field line over the head of Toronto first baseman Justin Smoak. He advanced to third base after Aledmys Diaz's long fly ball to centre.