No Hitter Vs. Perfect Game: A Detailed Explanation

A. Coatess

Written by

A. Coatess



Sean Hunter

Wenzen-ball is reader-supported. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more



When you hear about a no-hitter game, what comes to your mind? What about when you think of a perfect game?

The two situations certainly have many exciting dynamics in-store. But how much do you know about the no hitter vs. perfect game difference?

Whether you are a fan or a player, these are interesting scenarios to consider. Ultimately, MLB teams can increase their chances to score if they heavily immerse themselves into these dynamics.

What Do Perfect Game and No Hitter Mean in Baseball?


To better illustrate a baseball perfect game vs no-hitter comparison, let us first define what a no-hitter is.

  • A no hitter in baseball is a difficult feat that involves the pitcher of one team pitching but not allowing the batter in the other team (opposing team) to hit his ball.

This needs to happen in at least nine (9) innings.

However, a no-hitter does not automatically mean no base is reached. That depends entirely on prior contexts.

  • On the other hand, a perfect game means the opposing team fails to reach bases due to the effort of a pitcher within at least nine (9) innings. The feat can best unfold as a perfect 27-up, 27-down.

It’s easy to imagine the perfect game versus no hitter scenario, and the former is undoubtedly harder to pull off.

The difference between no hitter and perfect game lies in the elements involved.

In the case of the no-hitter game, the team’s success in preventing the enemy team from hitting the ball can justify the feat.

But in the case of the perfect game, two conditions need to be secured. First, the team must have a shutout game. Second, the team must also get a no-hitter and a win.

So is a no hitter a perfect game? No! It is a factor required in a perfect game.

The similarities between the two come from the fact that both are achievements made by a pitcher. In addition, both prove to be very challenging to achieve.

Thus, both a no-hitter and a perfect game rarely happen in MLB. If you are interested in how many perfect games have been thrown in MLB history, please click here for more details.

What Is a Shutout


A shutout definition (abbreviated as SHO) in baseball means that a pitcher carried his team throughout the game without granting an opportunity for the opposing team to score a run.

In the context of the shutout, the pitcher shall have been able to record his team’s outs.

To differentiate a perfect game vs no-hitter vs shutout, remember that a perfect game means no walks, hits, runs, or errors, while a no-hitter only means no hits and the shutout just means no runs.

Players Who Pitched the Most No-hitters

Here is a partial list of no-hitters in MLB history (in ranking order):

  • Nolan Ryan: Ryan has achieved seven (7) no-hitters in his career. His no-hitter momentum took off in 1973 and lasted until 1991.


  • Note that these no-hitter occurrences did not happen every year in the given timespan.
  • The same thing applies to most achievements made by individuals on this list.
  • Sandy Koufax: Koufax holds second place on our list with four (4) no-hitters from 1962 through 1965.
  • Justin Verlander: Verlander lands third on our list with three (3) no-hitters in three years, namely, 2007, 2011, and 2019.
  • Bob Feller: Feller had three (3) no-hitter achievements from 1940 to 1951.
  • Cy Young: Landing fifth on our list, Young had three (3) no-hitter feats from 1897 until 1908.
  • Larry Corcoran: Corcoran earns the sixth place on our list. His no-hitter achievements amount to a total of three (3).
  • He managed to achieve the feats from 1880 to 1884.
  • Mike Fiers: Fiers’ career is one noteworthy narrative, especially considering the Astros scandal.
  • Among his achievements are two no-hitter feats within a three-year interval (2015 and 2019).
  • Jake Arrieta: Arrieta has two no-hitter achievements in his career. One happened in 2015, and the other happened the following year.
  • Max Scherzer: Sherzer holds two no-hitter records in his career. Both of these achievements took place in a single year: 2015.
  • Tim Lincecum: Lincecum also holds two no-hitter records. One happened in 2013, and the other happened the following year.

MLB Teams With the Most No-hitters

Here is the list of teams with the most no-hitters in MLB history (in ranking order):


  • Los Angeles Dodgers: twenty six (26) no-hitters
  • Chicago White Sox: twenty (20) no-hitters
  • Boston Red Sox: eighteen (18) no-hitters
  • San Francisco Giants: seventeen (17) no-hitters
  • Cincinnati Reds: seventeen (17) no-hitters
  • Chicago Cubs: seventeen (17) no-hitters
  • Cleveland Guardians: fourteen (14) no-hitters
  • Atlanta Braves: fourteen (14) no-hitters
  • Philadelphia Phillies: thirteen (13) no-hitters
  • Oakland Athletics: thirteen (13) no-hitters

Other MLB teams with the most no-hitters:

  • Houston Astros
  • New York Yankees
  • Los Angeles Angels
  • Louis Cardinals
  • Baltimore Orioles
  • And many more…

Players and Teams Who Threw a Perfect Game

Here is a perfect game list for players and teams (in ranking order):

  • Cy Young: Young, like the rest of the players on this list, was able to throw one (1) perfect game in his career. It happened in May 1904.


  • Addie Ross: Ross pitched his perfect game in October 1908.
  • Charlie Robertson: Robertson pitched his perfect game in 1922.
  • Don Larsen: Ranking fourth on our list, Larsen achieved his perfect game in 1956.
  • Jim Bunning: Bunning pitched his perfect game in 1964.
  • Sandy Koufax: Koufax pitched his perfect game in 1965 with fourteen (14) strikeouts.
  • Catfish Hunter: Hunter pitched his perfect game in 1968.
  • Len Barker: Barker pitched his perfect game in 1981.
  • Mike Witt: Witt pitched his perfect game in 1984.
  • Tom Browning: Last on our list, Browning achieved his perfect game in 1988.

All 23 teams to have earned a perfect game (ranking based on year):

  1. Worcester Ruby Legs (1880)
  2. Providence Grays (1880)
  3. Boston Americans (1904)
  4. Cleveland Naps (1908)
  5. White Sox (1922)
  6. Yankees (1956)
  7. Phillies (1964)
  8. Dodgers (1965)
  9. A’s (1968)
  10. Indians (1981)
  11. Angels (1984)
  12. Reds (1988)
  13. Expos (1991)
  14. Rangers (1994)
  15. Yankees (1998)
  16. Yankees (1999)
  17. D-backs (2004)
  18. White Sox (2009)
  19. A’s (2010)
  20. Phillies (2010)
  21. White Sox (2012)
  22. Giants (2012)
  23. Mariners (2012)


The no hitter vs. perfect game comparison reveals an important truth: both have similarities and differences.

A no-hitter is a credit that requires the pitcher or pitchers in a team to make sure that the players from a competing team cannot hit the ball they pitch within nine innings.

On the other hand, a perfect game requires that the pitcher or pitchers in a team maintain a shutout and a no-hitter situation throughout a match.

The similarity between the two is that both are nearly impossible to achieve.

Comment below to share your thoughts about this topic.

Also, Some articles on MLB history that you might like, such as:

5/5 - (2 votes)