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Apr '22 17

British National Baseball League Week 2: No-Hitter for Mets’ Messer

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Christopher Messer fired British baseball’s first no-hitter of the year as the London Mets permitted just a single hit in 12 innings in its second doubleheader of the year. Essex started its season in style, sweeping last week’s impressive debutants, Bristol’s Vėtra club, and instantly moving into a tie for first place in the British National Baseball League. In the final matchup of the weekend, the Capitals’ bats were relentless against the Lancashire Legends, although only one game was recorded as final.

Messer etched his name in the record books with a dominant performance against the London Legends, striking out five consecutive batters in the third and fourth and preventing any runner from moving into scoring position. The right-hander finished with 16 Ks in seven innings, walking three. Incredibly, Messer has yet to allow a hit in two starts this year, though the Mets’ bullpen fell short in its attempt at a combined no-no on Opening Day. It was the first hitless NBL game since July 18, 2021, when Tommy Flaherty and Jordan Edmonds teamed up for another Mets no-hitter. Last season, seven no-nos were thrown across all levels of British baseball.

Tosh Lawson picked up where Messer left off, retiring the first 10 Legends consecutively to start the nightcap. With the titleholders pushing ahead 11-0 after four, Lawson needed only three outs for back-to-back no-hit games. After a flyout and a grounder, Angel Chira broke up the gem with a double to left center before Lawson recovered to finish the shutout. Rich Minford was 4-for-4 with a two-bagger in the doubleheader, driving in four.

Vėtra continued its excellent offensive showing from the first weekend of play in its opener with Essex, taking a 2-0 lead in the first to start a rollercoaster affair. The Arrows tied up the game in the bottom of the frame and plated three in the second, after which the visitors once more drew even. The two sides then added a pair of markers in their next at bats, but after two half-innings of zeroes, the hosts exploded for a massive seven-run fifth.

The 14-8 final included 17 hits, four walks, and four stolen bases for Essex, including a monster performance by Edwin Novas. The Arrows’ shortstop laced a run-scoring triple in the first and scored, blasted a three-run jack in the second, and lined a bases-clearing single in the fifth, crossing home for the third time later in the inning. The nightcap was a more sedate affair, with Yefersón Váldez and Alexander Jelloian both turning in strong performances on the bump, the former earning the win and surrendering only two hits.

Home team listed second. Box scores [link].

Week 2 (April 10)
Lon. Legends 0 – Mets 4
Capitals 8 – Lancs. Legends 1 (Top 2)
Vėtra 8 – Arrows 14
Lon. Legends 0 – Mets 11 (5)
Capitals 15 – Lancs. Legends 3
Vėtra 2 – Arrows 3
Bye week: Essex


Team W-L Pct. GB H A Str RF RA
Essex Arrows 2-0 1.000 2-0 0-0 W2 17 10
London Mets 3-1 .750 3-1 0-0 W1 26 12
London Capitals 2-1 .667 .5 0-0 2-1 W3 27 14
BC Vėtra 2-2 .500 1 0-0 2-2 L2 33 28
London Legends 2-2 .500 1 0-0 2-2 L2 17 29
Sheffield Bruins 0-2 .000 2 0-2 0-0 L2 14 17
Lancashire Legends 0-3 .000 2.5 0-2 0-1 L3 14 38


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