Nolan Ryan pitched the eighth one-hitter of his career and drove in a run with a second-inning single to lead the Houston Astros over the Padres, 3-0, last night in San Diego.
After retiring the first 13 batters he faced, Ryan yielded a one-out single to Terry Kennedy in the fifth inning. Ryan has pitched a record five no-hitters.
Ryan (12-9) struck out six, giving him 172 for the season, and walked three to earn his fourth straight victory and seventh complete game. The shutout was his second of the year and 49th of his career. His victory total is the most in three years with the Astros.
"I kept them offbalance because I was getting my change-up over," Ryan said. "I sure didn't feel that comfortable out there. I got ahead of the hitters on my location. When I had to rely on different pitches, I was getting them over.
"Toward the end I think my velocity was a little better. The big thing was I didn't walk anyone till late in the game."
The Astros made it 1-0 in the first. Dickie Thon, hitting safely in his 20th straight game, opened with a double off Eric Show, advanced to third on Terry Puhl's fly out and scored on Ray Knight's sacrifice fly.
Ryan's two-out single to right scored Alan Ashby, who had singled and reached third on a single by Art Howe in the second. In the fifth, singles by Puhl, Knight and Phil Garner with two out produced the final Houston run.