In lieu of actual baseball, I’ll be posting snippets that were cut from The Baseball Codes as a way of amusing myself and, hopefully, you. Today’s theme: Talking during a no-hitter.
Rex Hudler, who played for the Cardinals when Fernando Valenzuela no-hit them in 1990: “After the game, I walked up to out dugout and took the lineup card off the wall. The next day I had Fernando and some other players sign it. I wanted a keepsake.
“I had it professionally framed, with a photo of Fernando. I had it a long time. Years later, when I worked for the Angels, I asked Freddie, after he became a broadcaster, ‘Do you have anything from your no-hitter? The ball or anything?’ He said, ‘No, I have nothing.’
“I said, ‘I’ll see you tomorrow.’ I went home, took the frame off the wall and brought it to the ballpark the next day. I gave it to him around the batting cage. Mickey Hatcher, Scioscia, all these ex-Dodgers had their names on it. I said ‘Fernando, come check this out.’
“Mike [Scioscia] was talking about how they pitched each of the guys. When we were done, Fernando gave it back to me, and I said ‘No, that’s for you and your family. I want you to have it.’
“He got all emotional and excited. The game means so much to us. It means our whole life, and you can only do it for such a short time. That’s why memories are so big.”