Athletics starter Sean Manaea came close to the second no-hitter of his career.
However, former high school teammate Mike Brosseau had other plans and broke up the no-hit bid in the top of the eighth inning before A's walked off with a 2-1 win over the Tampa Bay Rays on Friday night at the Coliseum.
On the two-year anniversary of Mike Fiers’ second career no-hitter, Manaea dazzled, striking out 10 across 7 1/3 innings pitched. He would end up giving up two total hits and one earned run, but tipped his cap to cheering A’s fans as he walked off the mound.
Manaea realized he was throwing up zeroes by the third inning, and a possible perfect game was underway.
“The game was going by pretty fast and I was, I felt a little bit different today, I felt a lot more … momentous -- if that’s a word,” Manaea said. “Just carry myself out there, just going out there and just repeating it and before I knew it -- just the third inning, fourth inning, fifth inning, definitely started feeling it during those innings for sure.”
Manaea said he trusted that feeling and wanted to hold onto it throughout his start.
“Keep throwing it, just keeping guys off-balance,” Manaea said. “[Sean Murphy] called a great game, and just the presence he has back there gives me the confidence to just throw my pitches and have good results.”
The perfect game ended at the top of the seventh when Manaea walked Randy Arozarena to lead off the inning.
That didn’t matter though. Manaea had grown so much since a previous outing against the Rays, a devastating AL Wild Card loss in 2019. This solid outing had a little more satisfaction behind it.
“For me that moment is always going to be with me,” Manaea said. “In the moment, it sucked, but I’m kind of glad I’ve gone through that and been able to deal with that and get past it, grow from that. For these guys to come back and to have a successful outing, that’s huge.”