A no-hitter is the kind of feat most pitchers can only dream of achieving once. It is the perfect balance of in-the-zone pitching, and the defensive work of a whole team, combined together to create something that can only be described as pure magic.
Justin Verlander has created this magic twice in his career. The first time it happened was ten years ago, on June 12, 2007, as the Tigers faced the Milwaukee Brewers at home at Comerica Park. It was the first no-hitter to ever be pitched at Comerica. Jim Leyland was the skipper, and Hall of Famer Ivan “Pudge” Rodriguez was catching.
Verlander allowed four base-runners that day, but the Tigers won 4-0, and the young pitcher — in only his third season with the team — entered the history books. He would go on to do it again on May 7, 2011, but the first one would always loom large.
12 was a big number that day. At the end of the game Verlander had thrown 112 pitches. He struck out 12 batters. All on the 12th day of June. His fastball topped out at 102 mph at one point.
He marked his place as one to watch, and has continued to be dominant as one of the Tigers’ best pitchers — and one of the best pitchers in the game — ever since.