LONG BEACH, Calif. (KSEE/KGPE) – A Central Valley native had a special day on the mound Sunday in southern California.
Former Hanford High star Juaron Watts-Brown threw the first complete game no-hitter, and only the second ever no-hitter, in the history of the Long Beach State baseball program.
The redshirt freshman also struck out 16 batters in the Dirtbags’ 4-0 shutout win over UC Riverside. If not for a walk in the top of the fourth inning, Watts-Brown would have thrown a perfect game.
The 16 strikeouts were also one shy of the school record, set by former Long Beach State pitcher Jered Weaver, when he struck out 17 back on May 7, 2004.
Jered, the younger brother of former Fresno State and major league pitcher Jeff Weaver, went on to become a first round pick of the Angels in the 2004 MLB draft and a three-time All-Star with the Angels over 12 major league seasons.
Watts-Brown was also terrific in his previous start against UC Irvine, only giving up one run and three hits over six innings, while striking out 10, so he has now racked up 26 K’s in his last 15 innings on the mound.
He now has a 4.07 ERA over 12 appearances on the mound for Long Beach State (21-25 overall, 10-11 Big West) this season. He has struck out 82 in 55.1 innings pitched.