Josh Beckett himself could hardly believe what he had just pulled off.
The 14-year veteran struck out Chase Utley with a 94 mph fastball on a 3-2 pitch to complete the first no-hitter of his career, in a 6-0 Dodgers win Sunday over the Philadelphia Phillies.
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Beckett mixed a sharp fastball with a slow, deceptive curve that kept hitters off-balance while retiring 23 straight batters at one stretch. He pitched the Dodgers' first no-hitter since Hideo Nomo beat Colorado at Coors Field in 1996, and the 21st in franchise history. Sandy Koufax threw four.
"I don't think I had no-hit stuff," Beckett told LA SportsNet, after taking a Gatorade bath on the field afterward.
"I think a lot of it was just my mixing the pitches,” he added. “It's not like I'm out there throwing 95 mph overpowering guys. I got some great plays behind me.”
Beckett (3-1) struck out six batters and walked three on 128 pitches, 80 of which were strikes.
It was the first no-hitter in the Major Leagues this season.
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Talking with reporters after the game, Dodgers manager Don Mattingly sported a proud grin talking about Beckett's performance.
"It was a lot of fun," Mattingly said. "Josh has been throwing the ball good all year andfor him to be able to do this today, it's just nice with everything he's been through with us."
There were questions about what type of pitcher Beckett would be after having neck surgery last year to relieve pressure on a nerve. The once dominant, World Series MVP-winning power pitcher turned finesse hurler got emotional talking about his road back to being a big league starter.
"The surgery has been a blessing for me," he told Alana Rizzo of LA SportsNet. "I overcame a lot and a lot of it was (because of) my family."
In Sunday's game, Adrian Gonzalez led the Dodgers with three hits and two RBIs. Yasiel Puig, Justin Turner, and Erisbel Arruebarrena each collected two hits.
With the win the Dodgers finished 5-4 on their nine-game road trip.
The Associated Press contributed to this report