Jim Maloney was nearly unhittable, for 10 innings at least.
On June 14, 1965, Maloney faced the New York Mets in front of a modest crowd of 5,989 fans at Crosley Field and baffled Mets hitters into extra innings, striking out 15 batters through nine innings and allowing just one hit.
After a scoreless 10th inning, Maloney faced Johnny Lewis to lead off the Mets 11th inning. Lewis ripped Maloney’s 2-1 pitch over the fence in center field to give the Mets a 1-0 lead. “I wasn’t aware sure it was a homer. I kept running … until I saw the umpire signal,” said Lewis after the game. “I never saw a pitcher throw harder to me as Maloney did.”
Lou Smith, Reds beat writer for the Cincinnati Inquirer, said Maloney was throwing “faster and sharper” as the game entered extra frames.
Lost in the midst of Maloney’s singular performance was the combined shutout by Mets starter Frank Lary and reliever Larry Bearnarth. The pair pitched 11 scoreless innings. Lary fired eight scoreless innings, allowing five hits and Bearnarth pitched the final three innings, allowing just two hits to record the win.
“It’s a shame that “[Maloney’s] mistake had to be in a game like this,” said Reds manager Dick Sisler. “It was absolutely as fine a game as I’ve ever seen him pitch.”
According to the official scoring at that time, Maloney was credited with a no-hitter. Despite the loss, Maloney earned a $1,000 bonus for pitching a no-hitter over nine innings as stipulation of his contract with the Reds.
In 1991, Major League Baseball’s Committee for Statistical Accuracy amended its definition of a no-hitter, retracting Maloney’s no-hitter from the record books.