Jake Arrieta tossed his second career no-hitter as the Chicago Cubs destroyed the Cincinnati Reds in a historic 16-0 victory.
Arrieta, the reigning National League Cy Young winner, allowed only four hits, striking out six as he tossed his second no-hitter in the space of 11 regular-season starts – the last coming against the Los Angeles Dodgers in August last year. It was the first time Cincinnati have been no-hit since 1971.
In his last 24 starts, Arrieta now sports a 20-1 record with a 0.86 ERA.
Pitching was only half the story for the Cubs as Kris Bryant hit two home runs, including a grand slam, to collect six RBIs and pace an explosive offence.
Ben Zobrist, David Ross and Anthony Rizzo also cleared the fences, while Arrieta added to his brilliant night by reaching base three times on two singles and a walk, scoring one run.
The 16-0 win was the biggest margin of victory in a no-hitter in more than 100 years, second only to Pud Galvin’s no-hitter for Buffalo at Detroit in 1884, an 18-0 win.
Amid all of that, the Cubs moved to 12-4 on the season, the best record in baseball.
The Washington Nationals could not better that as they dropped to 11-4 with a 5-1 loss to the Miami Marlins, who got a three-run homer from Marcell Ozuna.
The Los Angeles Dodgers moved to 10-6 with a 2-1 win over the Atlanta Braves but needed an extra inning to do it as Yasmani Grandal hit an RBI double in the 10th. Clayton Kershaw struck out 10 in eight innings of one-run ball.
Yasmany Tomas’ homer helped the Arizona Diamondbacks complete a sweep of the San Francisco Giants with a 6-2 win.
An eight-run seventh inning powered the Pittsburgh Pirates to an 11-1 win over the San Diego Padres.
In the American League, the battle at the top of the AL West continued as the Texas Rangers beat the Houston Astros 7-4 for a fourth straight win while the Oakland Athletics completed a sweep of the New York Yankees with a 7-3 victory – their fifth in a row.
The Baltimore Orioles capitalised on a late passed ball from Russell Martin to beat the Toronto Blue Jays 3-2 and move to 10-4 at the top of the AL East.
The pitchers were made to suffer at Fenway Park where the Tampa Bay Rays beat the Boston Red Sox 12-8. Red Sox ace David Price had a miserable afternoon, giving up six runs in the fourth inning alone.
Edinson Volquez struck out five in seven scoreless innings as the Detroit Tigers beat the Kansas City Royals 4-0, while Robinson Cano’s three-run homer in the 10th lifted the Seattle Mariners to a 10-7 win over the Cleveland Indians.
The Los Angeles Angels edged out the Chicago White Sox 3-2, and the Minnesota Twins enjoyed an 8-1 win over the Milwaukee Bucks.