Miami, Florida – Angel Padron will forever be in the Serie Del Caribe record books. History was made on Wednesday, February 7, 2024, as 13,488 fans saw the 26-year-old southpaw throw the second no-hitter in tournament history with the first one dating back to 1952. Venezuela rallied behind Padron blowing out Nicaragua 9-0 in the final game of round-robin play in the Serie Del Caribe.
BALLGAME! NO HITTER! ANGEL PADRON!
The Venezuelan southpaw tossed a no hitter against Nicaragua on just 88 pitches! The second no no in #SerieDelCaribe history. What a historic performance to help Venezuela clinch the first seed heading into the semifinals. @LemonCityLive pic.twitter.com/M43WKWYXEm
— Alex “Milo” Aguirre (@aguirrethecap33) February 8, 2024
Nicaragua was not playing for much, already eliminated from advancing with a 0-5 record. They did, however, have a chance to play as the spoilers. Venezuela on the other hand already clinched a spot for the next round, but a win against Nicaragua would give them the first seed entering the semifinals.
To say the least, this is not the outing Angel Padron envisioned after manager Ozzie Guillen told him that he would go only three to four innings. Padron harnessed his inner Greg Maddux or did his best impersonation of him as he dazzled for nine innings on an incredible 88 pitches.
A Night Angel Padron Will Never Forget
According to Padron, it did not take very long for him to notice the type of night that was unfolding for him on the mound. In the fourth inning, Padron saw the scoreboard and that’s when he realized a 0 in the hit column for Nicaragua. Through four innings, he was perfect with 12 batters faced, and 12 retired.
Padron continued his perfection through seven innings. This was uncharted territory for Padron since he had never pitched beyond the sixth inning as a professional. Nonetheless, he was efficient and did not show any fatigue. The lone blemish in Padron’s stellar night was a leadoff walk in the top of the eighth. His chance at a perfect game was over but he responded from the walk by getting the following batter to ground into a 4-6-3 double play. Padron retired the next batter to keep the no-hitter intact and still faced the minimum amount of batters.
Ramón Flores le da tranquilidad a Padrón que lleva 7 innings perfectos 🔥
— BeisbolPlay (@beisbolplaycom) February 8, 2024
Needing only three more outs, Padron took the mound for the ninth inning and not a single person in loanDepot Park was sitting down. Padron retired the first batter of the inning and collected his fourth strikeout of the game for the second out. One batter stood in the way of history for Angel Padron. On a 1-2 pitch Omar Mendoza grounded to Jose Tovar and made the throw to first to complete Padron’s gem.
Padron raised his arms in the air like Rocky after defeating Drago, and his teammates rushed to the mound and celebrated. “I wanted to cry, honestly, I had no words to describe it and I still can’t describe everything that just happened … When the last out was made I couldn’t believe it and just said wow I made history, ” said Padron.
Venezuela's Ángel Padrón throws the first no-hitter in the Caribbean Series since 1952! pic.twitter.com/UQdnGXgaxL
— MLB (@MLB) February 8, 2024
Onto the Semifinals
Venezuela finished the opening round with a 5-1 record and the win against Nicaragua helped them clinch the first seed entering the playoffs. Panama also finished with a 5-1 record but Venezuela owns the tiebreaker after defeating them on Tuesday night 5-4. Nicaragua failed to win a game in the Serie Del Caribe going 0-6 but the future is very bright in baseball for them. This was at the very least a good learning experience.
The semifinals will feature these teams in order of seeding: Venezuela, Panama, Dominican Republic, and Curacao. Panama will face the Dominican Republic tomorrow at 3 p.m. while Venezuela takes on Curacao at 8 p.m.