On Saturday, Edinson Volquez threw a no-hitter for the Miami Marlins. Only two years ago, he helped lead the Kansas City Royals to a World Series championship only hours after the death of his father.
However, this weekend he honored two of his dearest friends with one of his best games as a professional. Volquez said he woke up on Saturday and wanted to dedicate his game on Sunday to his two friends who died during the prime of their lives.
He sent out a message on social media about the dedication and then pitched his first no-hitter in the majors in Miami’s 3-0 win over Arizona. The no-hitter was the first this season in the majors.
After the game, Volquez said the game had been a tribute to the lives of former Kansas City Royals’ Yordano Ventura and former Miami standout Alex Fernandez. On Saturday, Ventura would have been 26.
Prior to the start of the game, Volquez posted a photo of he and Ventura with a message that it was Ventura’s birthday. He wrote that he was pitching for the two of them as they were likely watching the game.
No one was any happier outside south Florida than the former teammates of Ventura in Kansas City, where they celebrated with tears and sent congratulatory messages to the Marlins pitcher.
Volquez had 10 strikeouts in the game and walked two in a game in which he needed just 96 pitches. He is the first pitcher since 1999 to throw a no-hitter with fewer than 100 pitches and have 10 strikeouts or more. David Cone accomplished the feat that year.
Entering the game, Volquez was just 1-7 on the season and became the pitcher with the lowest winning percentage in history at .125 to throw a no-hitter.
Volquez said his ankle hurt tremendously after his third pitch of the game following a collision at first that nearly caused him to leave the game.
At first he thought he had broken his ankle, but he spoke with the trainer and said he felt very good and to let him stay in the game.
Ventura died in a car accident in his home country of the Dominican Republic. Volquez called Ventura one of his best friends. He said he may have passed away, but Volquez was sure Ventura was enjoying the moment.
Fernandez died last September in a boating accident in south Florida after the boat he was in, crashed into a jetty.