SEATTLE — Chris Bosio began the night as if he might not get out of the first inning. He ended it with the first no-hitter of the season.
"It's a crazy game," Bosio said.
The Seattle right-hander walked his first two batters Thursday night but was perfect the rest of the way, sending the Mariners to a 7-0 victory over the Boston Red Sox.
Bosio, signed as a free agent after going 16-6 with Milwaukee last season, pitched the second no-hitter in the history of the Mariners' franchise.
He received several outstanding plays from his infielders, including the last out when shortstop Omar Vizquel barehanded a chopper by Ernest Riles behind the mound.
Bosio said he wasn't even thinking about a no-hitter until the ninth inning, though.
"To be honest with you, I just waited until the last inning," he said. "You know, after that last Detroit game (the Tigers won, 8-7, Sunday on a two-run homer in the ninth), you know, anything was possible and I just wanted to try to get that leadoff guy."
The last time Boston was no-hit was by New York's Dave Righetti on July 4, 1983, at Yankee Stadium.
"That was the first game I've managed that there was a no-hitter," Seattle's Lou Piniella said. "As a player I was there for Righetti."
With a Seattle Kingdome crowd of 13,604 standing for the ninth inning, John Valentin led off with a routine grounder to short. Tony Pena hit an easy grounder to third for the second out.
"I knew what was going on," Bosio said. "But in this game you always expect the worst."
Jose Guzman knows all about that. The Chicago Cub pitcher threw 8 2/3 no-hit innings against Atlanta on April 6 before Otis Nixon singled, and Guzman finished with a one-hitter.
"The ball bounced my way," Bosio said. "There were five or six balls that could have been hits."
Like the last one. Riles hit a high hopper over Bosio's head that Vizquel barehanded as the ball bounced off the turf. His running throw beat Riles by two steps.
The Mariners mobbed Bosio after the final out, the crowd roaring in the dome.
"It was kind of hard to concentrate after I got that first guy," Bosio said. "The crowd was just unbelievable, I mean it was just absolutely unbelievable."
Bosio was pitching on three days' rest.
"That turned out to be good," he said. "At the beginning of the season I told Lou he could move me up if he wanted to because I've done it before. But this was last thing that I ever expected.
"I'm not going to throw the ball 95 miles an hour like Randy (Johnson). I have to hit my spots."
It was Johnson, who pitched Seattle's first no-hitter--on June 2, 1990 against Detroit--and he was the first to grab Bosio in the postgame mayhem.
Bosio (1-1) got out of a jam in the first inning after walking Riles and Carlos Quintana to start the game.
"I think he was a little over-excited," catcher Dave Valle said. "I think he was trying to overthrow. He had a real good curve and a real good slider."
He got Mike Greenwell to hit into a double play and then struck out Andre Dawson swinging.
"Greenwell is an aggressive player," Bosio said. "He's one of the better players in the league. You don't expect this. But I'm a firm believer that some things are meant to be."
Bosio walked two and struck out four for the ninth shutout of his career. He threw 97 pitches, 60 for strikes, in beating the first-place Red Sox. Boston entered the game with a .285 team average.
"He was getting the slider over and taking some off the fastball and moving his pitches around very well," Boston Manager Butch Hobson said. "They really defensed us well."
In the third inning, first baseman Tino Martinez fielded a shot from Riles on his knees and threw to Bosio for the out.
In the fifth, Mo Vaughn's bad-hop grounder went off Martinez's glove. Second baseman Bret Boone, backing up the play, barehanded the ball and threw to Bosio for the out.
Right fielder Jay Buhner caught Scott Cooper's line drive for the final out of the fifth after appearing to lose the ball in the lights.
Bosio, 30, signed a four-year deal with the Mariners for $15.25 million. He pitched his no-hitter in his fourth start for Seattle and threw two two-hitters for Milwaukee--in 1987 and 1991.
The Mariners got three hits, including a two-run homer from Boone. They took a 2-0 lead off Joe Hesketh (2-1) in the second on Mike Blowers' run-scoring single and Valle's fielder's choice.
Boone homered off Hesketh after a walk to Buhner in the third for his first homer of the season.
The Mariners chased Hesketh on Valle's RBI single in the fourth and added two runs off Paul Quantrill in the sixth, one unearned because of Greenwell's error in left field. Mike Felder singled in the seventh Seattle run.
Most Recent No-Hitters
Most recent no-hitters by team with pitcher or pitchers, opponent, score and date:
BALTIMORE: Bob Milacki (6 innings), Mike Flanagan (1), Mark Williamson (1) and Gregg Olson (1) vs. Oakland, 2-0, July 13, 1991
BOSTON: Dave Morehead, vs. Cleveland, 2-0, Sept. 16, 1965