HOUSTON -- The only no-hitter Dennis Martinez ever witnessed was the one he threw against the Dodgers in 1991, the 13th perfect game in baseball history. Martinez, the Astros' bullpen coach, watched closely Tuesday night as Yu Darvish retired the first 26 batters he faced before coming up one out short of a perfect game.
"I had goose bumps last night watching Darvish throwing almost a perfect game, and I was in a way rooting for him, but I was also saying, 'OK, let's get this guy,'" Martinez said. "When you see those kinds of games like that, the way he was doing it, you have to admire that, and I think he did a great job."
Astros shortstop Marwin Gonzalez spoiled Darvish's perfect game with a two-out single that went through the pitcher's legs and into center field as Martinez watched anxiously.
"The emotions started coming back, and I remembered my time I was there with two outs and trying to get the last out to complete the game," he said. "It didn't work out [for Darvish]. It's a once-in-a-lifetime game, so maybe he'll get another chance."
Martinez was charting the game in the bullpen and didn't even realize Darvish was working on a perfect game until about the sixth inning.
"I said, 'Wait a minute, he's throwing a perfect game,'" he said. "He was making some great pitches and he deserved to get one, but at the end, I was happy for Marwin."