On This Date in Sports June 23, 1971: Wise Dose it All

In collaboration with the Sportsecyclopedia.com

Rick Wise of the Philadelphia Phillies has one of the greatest games in the history of baseball, throwing a No-Hitter while hitting a pair of home runs in a 4-0 win over the Cincinnati Reds at Riverfront Stadium. Wise, who allowed just a sixth-inning walk to Dave Concepcion, is the only pitcher to throw a No-Hitter and hit two home runs in the same game.

Born in Jackson, Mississippi, on September 13, 1945, and raised in Portland, Rick Wise made his debut with the Philadelphia Phillies at 18 on April 18, 1964. His first major league win came two months later in the second game of a doubleheader at Shea Stadium on Father’s Day, following up Jim Bunning’s perfect game. Wise had his ups and downs with the Phillies, as he had just two winning seasons in his first six years in the majors.

Rick Wise was off to a good start in 1971, playing for a bad Phillies team managed by Frank Lucchesi. Wise was holding a 7-4 record fighting off the effects of the flu as he made a Wednesday Night start against the defending National League Champion Cincinnati Reds led by Sparky Anderson at Riverfront Stadium. Neither team scored in the first inning as Rick Wise struck out Lee May after getting Pete Rose and George Foster to ground out. The Phillies meanwhile put a run on the board in the second inning as Joe Lis, who was hit by a pitched and advanced to third on a double by Willie Montanez, scored on a groundout by Roger Freed. Rick Wise would only record three strikeouts on the way to history, giving his infielders a workout as just one ball left the infield over the next three innings. 

In the fifth inning, Freed led off with a double and scored ahead of Rick Wise, who made the score 3-0 with a two-run homer off Reds starter Ross Grimsley. Meanwhile, the Big Red Machine continued to grind to a halt as Wise was perfect through five. The big for a Perfect Game was ended when Dave Concepcion walked with one out in the sixth, but Rick Wise continued to frustrate Cincinnati as Bernie Carbo flew to center and Rose bounced out to first to end the inning. After shutting down the Reds again in the seventh, Rick Wise hit his second home run coming against reliever Clay Carroll leading off the eighth. Meanwhile, the Reds continued confounded as Tony Perez, Hal McRae, and Tommy Helms went down in order in the eighth. In the ninth inning, Jimmy Stewart pinch-hitting for Concepcion struck out looking, and Ty Cline rolled out to second to put Pete Rose in the way of history. Rose would line the ball into the glove of John Vukovich at third base as Rick Wise completed his no-hitter.

Rick Wise would have the best season of his career in 1971, winning 17 games as he was selected as a National League All-Star. It would be his final season with Philadelphia as he was included in the trade to get Steve Carlton from the St. Louis Cardinals before the start of the 1972 season.