Faris pitches six no-hit innings

Former Clemson ace Stephen Faris carried a perfect game into the fifth inning for Double-A San Antonio before issuing a walk with two outs in a 5-1 win over Tulsa.

The right-hander was lifted with a no-hitter going after six frames. He struck out five while tossing 79 pitches, including 49 for strikes. Faris had a one-hitter over seven innings on July 30, 2008 with San Antonio.

Faris threw shutout ball of at least five innings in seven of his 26 starts a year ago.

"It wasn't just one pitch," Faris said of his effort on Monday. "As you know, I have been working on my changeup. Last year was the development of my curveball, and this year the focus is on the changeup and throwing it in different counts. I think it was a mix of everything. Obviously, locating the fastball – to have a good outing you have to do that every game."

Last time out, Faris allowed three runs, two earned, on seven hits to this same Tulsa team over five innings.

"Mixing it up – I faced these guys last time," Faris said. "I had some bright spots in that outing and made a few mistakes here and there. I tried to minimize those mistakes this time and learned from yesterday watching some of the guys hit (while charting behind the plate). I tried to keep them off-balance."

The righty tossed a complete game one-hitter on July 17, 2007 while with Fort Wayne – a game whose lone hit was debatable and many believed it to be foul. Which one was better?

"I am confident that ball was foul," Faris said. "Our coach got tossed out and I even talked to (John) Whittleman (of the Rangers Clinton affiliate) after the game – a left-handed hitter – and he said it was foul too. That was kind of bittersweet. Both are nice.

"Being early in the season, our pitch count is 85 and I think I was close to 80. It was a god spot to bring somebody in. They are both nice. I wouldn't say one was better than the other. I will take either one any day."

None of it would have been possible without a gameplan and a catcher who called a good game and kept Faris in rhythm.

"Mitch and I have gotten along well," Faris said. "He hadn't caught me a whole lot since he was in big league camp. He did come up to Lake Elsinore for the playoffs when I was there but we had a little bit of time to get to know each other. We took the time to talk about each hitter along with pitching coach Steve Webber. We were on the right path – I think I shook Mitch off two or three times. Each inning we sat down and talked about each batter and what we wanted to do. It worked out for us."

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