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This Day In Astros History: July 9, 1976

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Another special weekend edition of TDAH, as we have a pretty special day in team history. On this day, 35 years ago, Larry Dierker threw the only no-hitter of his career as the Astros beat the Montreal Expos 6-0 at the Astrodome.

Dierker gave up four walks and struck out eight in nine innings of work. The victory evened his record at 8-8 for the season. He went on to go 5-6 the rest of the way that season, finishing his last full season in the majors and his last with the Astros.

Dierk got through the first inning fairly quickly, but led off the second with a walk. That blew the perfect game, but Dierker quickly mowed through the next three hitters. The only inning where Dierker gave up more than one base runner was in the fifth, when he gave up two consecutive one-out walks to Larry Parrish and Pete Mackanin. He worked through the jam, getting Larry Johnson to fly out and Pepe Frias to strike out.

I'm always fascinated by looking through Dierker's career. He came up when he was just 17 and pitched until he was 30. This game came when he was 29, so he'd been in the majors 13 years before finally throwing a no-hitter. He pitched a ton of innings, but never had a particularly high strikeout rate. 

His number was retired because he was the manager of some of the most successful clubs in franchise history, but he was very good when he was pitching. It's a shame his career ended when it did, and my sincerest hope is that Jordan Lyles doesn't follow the same path.