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Wednesday, November 19, 2003
Ryan better with age, throws sixth no-hitter
By Larry Schwartz
Special to ESPN.com
June 11, 1990
At 43, Nolan Ryan still can bring it. The Texas Ranger fireballer, who was 0-3 with an 8.86 ERA in his previous five starts, becomes the oldest pitcher to throw a no-hitter as he tames the Oakland Athletics, 5-0.
"It comes so late in my career that it makes it extra special," Ryan says.
It's Ryan's sixth no-hitter, extending his major-league record (he will retire with seven). He is the first to pitch no-hitters for three teams (the California Angels and Houston Astros were the others). He strikes out 14 (the 201st time he reaches double figures) and walks two in pitching his 59th shutout.
"I was concerned with my back problems and I said, 'Well, I'll just go seven innings,'" Ryan says. "Then I got through seven, and I decided I'm not going to give in to it. I just need six more outs."
After he gets them, he's carried off the field by his teammates as the Oakland crowd continues to chant, "Nolan! Nolan!," as it had over the last several innings.
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