When Gerardo Parra’s eighth-inning drive one-hopped the wall in left-center field for a double, leaving Hyun-Jin Ryu five outs shy of a no-hitter, the Dodgers left-hander felt more disappointed for right fielder Cody Bellinger than he did for himself.
It was Bellinger who had given Ryu a chance at baseball history Sunday, fielding Stephen Strasburg’s apparent sixth-inning single on a hop in shallow right field and firing a lengthy laser to first base to retire the Washington Nationals pitcher and keep Ryu’s no-hit bid alive.
After settling for eight innings of one-hit ball in which he struck out nine and walked one in a 6-0 victory over the Nationals before a crowd of 45,667 in Dodger Stadium, Ryu felt like he owed Bellinger an apology.
“He made a huge play and kept the no-hitter going,” Ryu said through an interpreter. “Honestly, I feel like I want to say sorry to him because I could have accomplished something thanks to that play, but in the end, I did give up a hit.”
Bellinger began scheming with first baseman Max Muncy about such a play four innings earlier.
“I was playing really shallow with Strasburg hitting,” Bellinger said. “Me and Muncy connected in the second inning. If there was a line drive at me, I was going to try to get one just because that’s the only opportunity you have usually, with the pitcher. It’s the perfect opportunity for it.”
Bellinger charged Strasburg’s hit toward the line and fired a 93-mph throw to Muncy at first, the velocity fitting for a 9-3 putout. Umpire Gerry Davis’ out call was upheld after a 1-minute, 5-second instant replay review.
“It was bang-bang,” said Bellinger, who is tied for the NL lead with five outfield assists. “I didn’t know if he was out or safe. I just tried to throw it as hard as I could.”