When Cincinnati Reds players returned to the clubhouse after Wade Miley pitched a no-hitter Friday, they sat around, grabbed a drink and shared stories about what they remember from a historical night.
There were so many stories to tell from a night they’ll never forget.
The first thing that everybody remembered afterward: Miley wouldn’t stop talking on the bench. His teammates tried to avoid him, adhering to the longtime baseball tradition of not talking to the pitcher during a no-hitter.
Pitching coach Derek Johnson scooted a little further from Miley in the dugout in the seventh inning, just nodding without saying anything when Miley tried to talk to him.
“Most pitchers are kind of superstitious and guys change, but that dude talks non-stop,” Kyle Farmer said Saturday. “Even in the dugout yesterday, he was talking non-stop. I think DJ tried to get up and Wade was like, 'no, sit down.' He was talking. He was the same person. I think that's why everyone loves him so much because he's the same person every day.”
"I love when Wade has to hit because he doesn’t talk as much in the dugout so it allows me to focus on my at-bats a little bit more," Tucker Barnhart said. "When he doesn’t have to hit in an American League game, it’s like hard to get ready to hit. But I love it. It was just so much fun."
Miley tried to treat it as a normal night, but one of the funny things about a no-hitter is that everybody notices them at different points. Players are locked into their own routines until they have the sudden realization that they could be a part of history.
Right fielder Nick Castellanos noticed Miley was throwing a no-hitter when it was announced on the Progressive Field scoreboard in the seventh inning.
Amir Garrett, Farmer said, didn’t realize Miley threw a no-hitter even after the final out. He thought everyone was fired up because he pitched a complete-game shutout.
Farmer thought about how deep Miley was pitching in the sixth or seventh inning when he glanced at the scoreboard and saw the “0” in Cleveland’s hits column. If he didn't notice through the scoreboard, he saw how all the guys who weren't in the game stood in the same spots.
“Sonny (Gray) was choreographing the dugout, like where to sit in-between innings,” Farmer said. “They had a line change going on."
There were a lot of little quirks throughout the no-hitter. Center fielder Tyler Naquin read his positioning card the wrong way all night. There was no pregame pitchers’ meeting after the rain delay.
Miley didn’t even realize Cleveland used a pinch-hitter to lead off the ninth inning, Rene Rivera hit for Austin Hedges. Rivera flew out to right field.
Heck, Miley pitched his no-hitter with a temporary Hulk tattoo on his right forearm.
"Tucker did something different – he was really upset with himself – but it worked out," Farmer said. "I think he said he went to the restroom in the ninth inning, and I think he was like, “Gosh darn it, I think I just screwed everything up.” It’s so funny because you think about the smallest details in those moments."
As much as it was Miley's night for the record books, his teammates savored it. They were thrilled for Miley and grateful to be a part of history.
When they sat around in the clubhouse afterward, they just tried to remember every little thing that they could.
"It was a special moment," Farmer said. "Everybody got around, just talking and hearing people’s different stories about the bullpen, the dugout. Everybody had a story and everybody was thinking something different.
"Hearing what they were thinking, about what they were doing, like, ‘I didn’t go to the bathroom.' 'I didn’t move up from my seat.' 'I chewed gum three times in between innings,' and stuff like that. It was funny. It was a cool, team bonding moment."