– A few extra miles and a steady rainfall couldn’t dampen the spirits of thousands of Cubs fans who traveled to Miller Park in Milwaukee on Sunday to watch Chicago Cubs pitcher Carlos Zambrano
, throw a no-hitter against the Houston Astros. To honor a feat that immediately makes its mark on Chicago baseball history, Governor Rod R. Blagojevich, a lifelong Cubs fan, has proclaimed September 16, 2008 as Carlos Zambrano Day in Illinois.
“Carlos Zambrano is the leader of the Cubs’ pitching staff, and his leadership was never more evident than it was on Sunday,” said Governor Blagojevich. “I am pleased to honor ‘Big Z’ for this spectacular accomplishment by proclaiming today Carlos Zambrano Day in Illinois. He truly has made Cubs fans proud.”
Zambrano, who just recently had suffered from soreness in his arm, was the first Cubs pitcher in 36 years to accomplish such a feat; the last Cub to throw a no-hitter was Milt Pappas on September 2, 1972. Due to the dangerous weather conditions in Houston, Sunday’s game was played in Milwaukee’s Miller Park and the game marked the first neutral-site no-hitter in baseball history.
Zambrano is one of many Illinois heroes who the Governor has honored during his administration by proclaiming a day in their name. Most recently, Illinois celebrated Danica Patrick Day when the racer became the first woman to win an Indy Car event, Jennifer Hudson Day when the actress won an Oscar for her role in Dream Girls, and 2005 World Champions Chicago White Sox Day when the team won the World Series.
The text of the Governor’s proclamation is followed below:
WHEREAS, on Sunday September 14, at Miller Park in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, Chicago Cubs pitcher Carlos Zambrano threw a no-hitter for a 5-0 win over the Houston Astros; and
WHEREAS, with this accomplishment, Zambrano became the first Chicago Cub pitcher since Milt Pappas in 1972 to throw a no-hitter; and
WHEREAS, this was also the first neutral-site no-hitter in baseball history. The teams were playing in Milwaukee instead of Houston because of Hurricane Ike; and
WHEREAS, before a crowd of 23,441, Zambrano dominated in a 110-pitch outing, striking out a season-high 10 batters and walking only one; and
WHEREAS, Zambrano’s pitching performance was so dominant that only two balls left the infield all night, and while there were no close calls or spectacular plays needed to preserve the no-hitter, Zambrano himself did make two good plays in the field to keep the no-hitter in-tact; and
WHEREAS, Zambrano’s fastball was clocked at 98 m.p.h. and his single in the third inning gave him one more hit than the entire Houston Astros team; and
WHEREAS, Carlos Zambrano is a great pitcher, a great ballplayer and brings great enthusiasm to the game of baseball; and
WHEREAS, Zambrano’s spectacular performance on Sunday, September 14, now takes its place among the most memorable moments in the storied history of the Chicago Cubs;
THEREFORE, I, Rod R. Blagojevich, Governor of the State of Illinois, do hereby proclaim September 16, 2008 as CARLOS ZAMBRANO DAY in recognition of this extraordinary athletic accomplishment.