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Was Mauer's Performance Better Than A No-Hitter?

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In case you’ve been asleep since about 5 p.m. yesterday, you saw that former Twin Matt Garza put together the first no-hitter in Tampa Bay Rays history against the fading Detroit Tigers. Garza faced the minimum of 27 hitters in the Rays’ 5-0 victory at Tropicana Field.

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Garza’s performance was the fifth no-hitter of the 2010 season -- sixth if you count Armando Galarraga’s should-have-been perfect game -- and the 177th in the history of Major League Baseball. A great performance, to be sure ... but the folks on ESPN Radio’s Mike and Mike In the Morning brought up an interesting point.

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In last night’s 19-1 rout of Kansas City, Twins’ catcher Joe Mauer went 5-for-5 with seven runs batted in. And while there have been 177 no-hitters in Major League Baseball history, Mauer’s performance last night marks only the 44th time a player has had at least five hits and seven RBI in the same game.

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So while it could be argued that Mauer’s achievement was as good or better, there is no arguing that it’s a significantly rarer feat.

Photographs by Micah Taylor, clairity, and Fibonacci Blue used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.