Black Sox Beat Writer
Chicago Sports Online
Black Sox starting pitcher Amayas Moelling no-hit the Omaha Hawks on Aug. 11, allowing just one walk and a hit batsman, both in the top of the 5th inning.
A near-capacity crowd of 34,898 watched the 21-year-old right-hander make history, as the Sox downed Omaha 10-0. Despite the lopsided score, the stadium was nearly as crowded in the 9th inning as the 1st.
“This was beyond my wildest dreams,” Moelling said afterwards. “I mean, this is the kind of thing you daydream about when you’re playing catch with your brother in the backyard.”
“While this wasn’t like no-hitting Yellow Springs, say, or Valencia, it’s not a small accomplishment, either,” said Malcolm Wilkes, Heartland Division columnist for BBA Weekly. “No-hitters are hard, no matter who you’re facing.”
In fact, Moelling’s gem is just the third no-hitter thrown this season in the Brewster Baseball Association. The first was by Rockville starter Dan Cannon, who no-hit Boise on May 23, and the second was by Des Moines SP Don Smith, who stifled Yellow Springs on July 20. Smith, who threw 113 pitches in his no-hit effort, went down for the season in his next start with a shoulder injury. Moelling was fairly economical with his pitches, throwing just 91 in his complete game effort.
This most recent no-hitter was just the fourth in franchise history. The first was in 2008, during the team's first go-around in Chicago, by Dave Corrigan, against Valencia; the second was in 2020 by Terrence Miller against Atlantic City; and the most recent was while the team played in Huntsville, in 2027 by Gerardo Fajardo against Yellow Springs.
The only threat the Hawks mounted came in the top of the 5th, when Moelling walked leadoff hitter Bobby Parker, the left fielder, on 5 pitches. He got the next batter on a fly to medium right, but struck out 3B Tu-fu Yong for the second out. Parker, however, stole second base.
That brought catcher Conner Hamilton to the plate, who Moelling plunked with a slider, putting runners at first and second. Moelling seemed momentarily rattled, prompting a mound visit by Sox catcher Diesel Dave.
“I just told him to shake it off,” Dave said. “I went over what we knew about the next guy, their DH, Allan MacHugh, and told him to just forget everything except getting him out.”
Even with that advice ringing in his ears, Moelling looked shaky as he started pitching to MacHugh, running the count to 3-1 before getting a second strike and finally inducing a weak fly to left.
From then on, it was smooth sailing – including a brisk top of the 9th, where he retired the first two batters quickly and then got a routine grounder to third from Monger.
As the ball thudded into the glove of first baseman Tommy Cochran for the final out, pandemonium broke out in the stands and on the field, as Moelling’s teammates mobbed him on the mound.
A jubilant Sox manager, Bret Richards, told reporters afterwards that he thought Moelling had received a little Divine assistance.
"He mixed his pitches well and hit his spots, plus he got a little help from above," Richards said. "Amayas really took it to another level today."
For the season, Moelling is 12-9 with a 3.72 ERA, 126 Ks, and 33 walks.
Now, said Wilkes of BBA Weekly, Moelling needs to keep going with his no-hit momentum.
“This is the kind of performance the league has been expecting out of Moelling but just hasn’t seen with enough regularity,” Wilkes said. “The key for him going forward is to sustain this kind of excellence.”