Chris Heston hurls into history with no-hitter

It happened again. And this year, it wasn’t Tim Lincecum. But it snuck up on us all as the Bay Area focused its attention on the NBA Finals in Cleveland.

Perhaps the alleviated pressure made a little room for history: Rookie Chris Heston pitched a stunning no-hitter Tuesday against the Mets at Citi Field, propelling the Giants to a 5-0 win.

The no-hitter has become an annual event for the Giants dating back to Matt Cain‘s perfecto in 2012. Lincecum took care of the next two in 2013 and 2014 and, this year, it was the 27-year-old rookie’s turn.

Heston’s had an up and down season — he’s seen a two-inning, five run stinker alongside a a complete game, one-run stunner in May alone. He’s been great or below average and never really in between; he entered Tuesday toting a 5-4 record and a 4.29 ERA.

Tuesday, Heston was at his best. In nine innings, he struck out 11 batters and walked none. His perfection was disrupted only by hitting three batters, including the first batter he faced in the ninth.

Heston finished off his no-hitter by striking out the side. It took 110 clean pitches.

The no-hitter is the first in the majors this season. Heston is the 21st rookie in MLB history to throw a no-hitter, the last was Clay Buchholtz for the Red Sox in 2007. The last Giant rookie to do this was Jeff Tesreau in 1912 against the Phillies.

The no-hitter was Buster Posey‘s third; he caught Cain’s in 2012 and Lincecum’s in 2013.