Los Angeles Angels rookie pitcher Reid Detmers tossed a no-hitter against the Tampa Bay Rays in just his 11th career start on Tuesday night, but that wasn’t the only shocking thing that happened during the game.
In the eighth inning, the Rays sent outfielder Brett Phillips to the mound with the game already 8-0 in favor of the Angels. Third baseman Anthony Rendon, who was 0-4 at that point in the game, ended up coming to the plate against Phillips and decided to bat left-handed for the first time in his career.
Naturally, Rendon slugged a shocking two-run home run to right field:
It was a rough inning for Phillips, who also yielded a long two-run home run to Mike Trout and a double to Shohei Ohtani. The Angels ended up winning the game 12-0 with Detmers finishing off his no-hitter with a 1-2-3 ninth inning.
“I thought it was great theater,” Angels manager Joe Maddon said. “It was the perfect time to pull it off. Baseball is looking for moments like that. The crowd responded properly. No disrespect to the other side. It was just a fun baseball moment.”
Maddon added that he actually didn’t even realize that Rendon was the one at the plate (because he’s used to seeing him hit right-handed) until Angels field coordinator Mike Gallego mentioned it in the dugout.
Rendon’s homer ended up traveling an estimated 411 feet, so it wasn’t one that barely got out of the yard, either. In doing so, Rendon set a new record with 4,528 plate appearances of batting right-handed before hitting lefty.