The 35-year-old right-hander, nicknamed Klubot for his robot demeanor, came close to Charlie Culberson in the third inning to throw a perfect match.
Kluber, a two-time American League Cy Young Award winner, threw his gem one night after Detroit Tigers right-hander Spencer Turnbull threw one against the Seattle Mariners, marking the batting debut of consecutive days since 1969 when Jim Maloney of Cincinnati cast one on April 30 and Don Wilson of Houston on May 1.
“I had butterflies in this ninth round, I’m getting a little emotional now, even just seeing that it was really, really special,” said manager Aaron Boone. “And to see his teammates and everyone’s excitement for Corey and just the excitement for themselves to be a part of such a thing. What a performance. “
Klue (hit) less pic.twitter.com/JJzOL4sH1m
– Yankees de New York (@Yankees) May 20, 2021
Kluber (4-2) struck out nine and threw 71 of 101 strikes in his ninth start for the Yankees. With his fastest launch at 92.5 mph, he mixed 31 curved balls, 27 cutters, 23 pellets, 18 shifts and two four-seam fast balls.
Kluber was pitching on that same mound when he was injured after an inning last season, when he tore a muscle in his right shoulder on July 26 on his Texas debut.
It was the second straight shortened season for Kluber, whose 2019 season ended on May 1 when he was punched in the forearm by a comeback. He left the Rangers as a free agent to sign a one-year, $ 11 million contract with the Yankees.
Right fielder Tyler Wade pulled off a flyball from pinched hitter David Dahl for the second out of the ninth inning before Willie Calhoun’s late-game takedown to stop Gleyber Torres. Wade entered the third inning after Ryan LaMarre suffered a hamstring injury.
Boone said he was nervous on the ball Dahl hit, thinking it was going to go down the line, but then noticed the good jump Wade got on the ball.
“I knew I was going to catch it,” Wade said. “I didn’t know if I was going to have to dive or catch him like I did. But I knew I was going to catch it. “
Wade said he wasn’t sure, unable to hear the stick out of the ball with a screaming crowd of 31,689 – many of whom were Yankees fans.
Boone’s father, Bob, caught Texas Angels pitcher Mike Witt in 1984.
” It stinks. It’s baseball. There are no hitters. There have been a lot so far this year. Unfortunately for us that we were part of two of them, ”Culberson said. “It shows you how good these pitchers are, these teams and what they do. “
It was the 12th without a hit in Yankees history, the 11th in the regular season and the first since David Cone’s perfect game against Montreal on July 18, 1999. It was the fifth against the Rangers, who were also at home on April 9 when San Diego native Joe Musgrove pitched the first scorer in Padres history.
“We were expecting outings like this in our ballpark, unfortunately not against us,” said Rangers manager Chris Woodward. “I can’t say enough good things about her. I am not surprised by the success of this guy. I’ve seen this guy go through his routine and the work he does. “
New York got its only points in the sixth inning when Kyle Higashioka took a lead and scored on a Wade triple. DJ LeMahieu followed with a fly sacrifice against Hyeon-Jong Yang (0-1).
Prior to being injured in 2019, Kluber had won 20 games in 2018 and pitched at least 203 innings with 222 strikeouts each season from 2014 to 2018. He was the Cy Young winner in 2014 and 2017.
“Obviously, I wish this guy the best of luck,” said Woodward, “but I didn’t wish him so much success. “
The four non-hitters in May are the most in a month since June 1990. It is also the first time three teams have not been hit twice in a season, with the Rangers joining Cleveland and Seattle.
Yankees: LaMarre grabbed his right hamstring just before getting to first base while running a ball to the ground. … OF Clint Frazier (neck problems) was out of the roster for the second game in a row. “I don’t know if it’s stiff or what, but we’re looking at all of this and what it might mean,” Boone said. … C Gary Sanchez, who left Tuesday night’s game with left hamstring cramps, was available to play. Boone said he always anticipated that Sanchez would not play Wednesday night before the day game for the series finale.
Rangers: 3B Brock Holt (right hamstring tension) played his second rehab game with Double-A Frisco. He has been absent since May 3.
The Yankees are 6-3 for their trip final. Domingo German (3-2, 3.62 ERA) launches New York against Rangers right-hander Dane Dunning (2-3, 4.34) whose ninth start will be the biggest among AL rookies.