By now, most fans know the storybook-like manner in which the no-hitter unfolded:
The Padres were the last active MLB franchise left without a no-hitter, having gone 8,205 games without one. During its history, the team had endured 30 one-hitters.
Some fans believed there was a “curse” on the team since the game in which manager Preston Gómez pulled pitcher Clay Kirby for a pinch hitter after his eight innings of no-hit ball against the Mets on July 21, 1970.
In early January of this year, the Padres announced a three-team trade which brought Joe Musgrove from the Pittsburgh Pirates back to his home town.
Joe grew up in El Cajon and played varsity baseball at Grossmont High School. He was a first-round draft choice by the Toronto Blue Jays in 2011.
Joe’s family has deep ties to Padres baseball, making frequent visits to Qualcomm Stadium and Petco Park. Joe’s father Mark grew up in San Diego and listened to Jerry Gross’s play-by-play in the 1970s.
In a press conference following Joe’s trade to the Padres, he said was “thrilled” because San Diego was “the place where my dream of being a professional baseball player really started.” He wears number 44 because his favorite Padres player growing up was Jake Peavy.
Joe’s no-hitter included no walks, one “hit-by-pitch,” 10 strikeouts, and 112 pitches. As the pitch count rose, he saw that relievers were warming up in the bullpen.
For a fan, it doesn’t get much better than remembering where you were and how you experienced a special game such as the first no-hitter in Padres history.
These are the stories of how a few Padres fans will remember the historic night.
“Greatest day of my life!”
Tommy watched the no-hitter from a hospital delivery room while his wife Gina was in labor.
As Tommy and Gina waited for the big event (the baby, not the final out!), Gina suggested to Tommy that he try logging on to his MLB.TV account using the television’s Internet connection. It worked!
As the no-no game progressed, I started to get more and more nervous. My wife asked why I was pacing around the room.
I didn’t want to jinx anything so all I said was “somethings happening in this game that’s never happened before but I can’t say anything yet.”
She understands that I’m a weirdo, lol.
TKF interview, 4/12/21
Tommy is 33 years old and was raised in Lemon Grove. His mom, a San Diego native, was a big Padres fan and would take Tommy and his sister to games at the Murph while their dad was out to sea with the Navy. Tommy idolized Tony Gwynn and considers him a role model. One of his greatest childhood memories is when his mom took him to the Murph to see Gwynn’s 3,000th hit on the stadium’s Jumbotron feed from Montreal.
During the game, my wife was having contractions so I took turns pacing by the tv and sitting by her bedside.
As the game continued, I was sure it wasn’t going to happen because I’ve been a Padre fan my whole life and things tend to not work out for us.
After the final out I was high-stepping and jumping up and down in the room. That’s when I told my wife about the no-hitter.
TKF interview, 4/12/21
“He’s already like a brother to me!”
Josh Goryl and Chris Chadwick had never met in person until they went to the game separately at Globe Life Field. Josh was with a friend (a Rangers fan), and Chris went solo because his wife was only interested in going to the series on Saturday. Chris almost skipped the Friday game.
Both are Texas residents, Josh for most of his life, and Chris for the past three years since moving there from San Diego in search of cheaper housing along with a job relocation opportunity for his wife. Josh, 28, is an auto mechanic, and Chris,35, is in mortgage banking.
Josh and I have interacted quite a bit on Twitter for the last couple of years because we share a love for both the Padres and also the Dallas Stars hockey team.
He was there with a friend, and I had initially just stopped by to say hello at the beginning of the game and was kinda just walking around and checking out the park by myself most of the night. Then around the 7th, Josh sent me a DM telling me that the people in front of them had gone home, if I wanted to come sit with them.
TKF interview with Chris, 4/12/21
They were both completely dialed in, excited, and anxious as the game unfolded.
By the 7th inning, the excitement was starting to increase with every out but as a lifelong fan, there was always that feeling of knowing it wasn’t going to happen because it never happens. It honestly wasn’t until the final out that I fully allowed myself to believe it could really happen.
TKF interview with Chris, 4/12/21
But it did, in fact, happen that night. Josh’s friend recorded their reactions.
In May of last year, I profiled Jeff, the Padres fan who has kept watch over the team’s no-hit bids and who tweets with the handle @PadresNoHitter. Every day Jeff sent out a similar tweet, but this one was the last of its kind.
The Padres had a day off on April 8. At some point during the 7th inning of Musgrove’s game on April 9, I sent a text to Jeff.
We then saw this series of tweets from Jeff.
Perhaps my favorite part of Jeff’s Twitter timeline was when the Padres account acknowledged his service.
He also got a shoutout from Bally Sports San Diego. Mike Pomeranz said that this tweet from Jeff captured the moment “as poetically as you could possibly say it.”
At the end of the night, Jeff toasted Musgrove’s accomplishment, and for a guy who says he was “speechless,” he sure did speak for all of us.
Mostly here to promote fun baseball! My focus is on our experiences as fans and shared connections in the baseball community. I also produce content on social media, including vlogs and event coverage. Instagram: Michelle_baseballfan247 Facebook: Michelle Frost; Member: IBWAA, SABR