May 23, 2018

36 Up, 36 Down, But Still Lost

January 6, 2013 by · 2 Comments 

Hey baseball fans!

In honor of the perfect games last season, I wanted to blog about a very strange ALMOST-perfect game:

Harvey Haddix, of the Pittsburgh Pirates, was nothing special, but on one day, he happened to just be a pitcher who pitched a perfect game through 12 innings, but gave it up in the 13th.

It was May 26th, 1959, Pirates vs. Braves. Haddix was pitching masterfully through nine innings, not giving up a hit, walk, or error. However, the opposing pitcher, Lew Burdette, held the Pirates scoreless through nine, too. So into extras it went, tied 0-0.

After 12 innings, it was still tied 0-0, and still, Haddix was pitching a perfect game. In the bottom of the 13th, an error by Don Hoak of the Pirates allowed Felix Mantilla to reach first, ending the perfect game, but the no-hitter was still in tact.  After a sacrifice bunt and an intentional walk to Hank AaronJoe Adcock hit an apparent home run, ending the no-hitter and the game. However, in all the confusion, Aaron left the base paths and was passed by Adcock for the second out and the Braves won 2-0. Eventually, the hit was changed to a double by the ruling of NL president, Warren Giles; only Mantilla’s run counted, for a final score of 1-0, but Haddix still lost. Although Haddix lost, it is considered by many to be the best pitching performance ever.

Matt Nadel is a 13 year old baseball history kid blogger from Springfield, NJ who writes two baseball blogs under the name, Baseball with Matt.  Matt started his original blog back in April 2012 when he saw that a lot of his friends didn’t know anything about baseball history and he thought that a blog would be a fun way to educate kids and adults about baseball history.  After posting nearly 85 times, he was introduced to John Thorn, the official historian for MLB, and John liked Matt’s blog and arranged for Matt to have his own Pro Blog on MLB, making Matt the youngest Pro blogger on You can also follow Matt on Twitter @BaseballwMatt.  Baseball with Matt is a member of the Baseball Bloggers Alliance.


2 Responses to “36 Up, 36 Down, But Still Lost”
  1. Don Hoover says:

    This truly was an outstanding performance, by a gentleman who also pitched for the Baltimore Orioles. I had the opportunity to meet Harvey Haddix after a game in Baltimore. He was a class act off the field as well as on. To lose a 36 inning perfect game had to be heart breaking to him. Nice article Matt.

  2. Matt Nadel says:

    Thanks Don. I feel really bad for Harvey.

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