Ranger Suarez has gained a reputation as a control pitcher, averaging eight strikeouts for every walk that he issues. In 2014, he walked just one batter in 80 2/3 innings of work with the Phillies Venezuelan Summer League team, striking out 78 batters on the season.
Now, he's also known as a guy who can completely shut down an opponent's offense. Tuesday night, Suarez, 20, threw a seven-inning no-hitter for Williamsport in their 4-0 win over the Auburn Doubledays. The game, the first game of a double-header, was the first time a Crosscutters pitcher has thrown a complete game no-hitter. The last no-hitter in Williamsport history was a combined no-hitter when Yacksel Rios, Mark Meadors and Manny Martinez combined on a no-hitter three years ago.
The way the night started, it didn't appear that Suarez would be doing anything special. The lefty opened the game by walking leadoff hitter Blake Perkins on five pitches. The next batter, Jack Sundberg grounded into a 1-6-3 double-play and Suarez then got Jake Noll to groundout to short to end the inning. From there on, Suarez was in complete command of the game, facing the minimum 21 batters and striking out five. Suarez threw just 79 pitches, 51 of which were for strikes.
On the season, Suarez is now 4-0 and lowered his season ERA to 2.09 with Williamsport.
The Williamsport offense got three runs in the bottom of the first for Suarez to work with. Mark Laird, who is a member of the Lakewood BlueClaws, but playing with Williamsport on a rehab assignment, led off the inning with a single and two outs later, Jan Hernandez drew a walk. Darick Hall then doubled to drive in both runners and an error by Noll allowed the third run of the inning to score.
In the bottom of the third, Williamsport added another run when Hernandez doubled with two outs and scored when Hall followed with a line drive double to right, making it a 4-0 game.