BOSTON -- This Jake Arrieta fella is on some kind of roll. And in quite the places.
Last week he took a perfect game into the seventh inning against the Cincinnati Reds at Wrigley Field. Monday night, Arrieta walked into Fenway Park and tossed no-hit ball for 7⅔ innings before Stephen Drew hit a solid, line-drive single to right field on Arrieta's 120th pitch.
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Cubs manager Rick Renteria immediately went to the mound to get Arrieta, who left to a huge ovation by 37,814 Fenway fans.
The bullpen held on, and the Cubs had a 2-0 victory, with Nate Schierholtz's 2-run homer in the fourth providing all the scoring.
"The tension kind of builds there as the fifth and sixth inning kind of approach," said Arrieta, who is 5-1 with a 1.81 ERA in 11 starts since coming off the disabled list May 3. "The space around me kind of increases, naturally.
"But, yeah, another special night. It's special to do it in this ballpark. To do something like this last week in Wrigley and to do it in these two parks is pretty special."
Arrieta, 28, missed spring-training games because of a shoulder ailment. But he has been sensational for the past two months, with his fastball, slider-cutter and changeup.
"I think he's found his routine," said Cubs pitching coach Chris Bosio, who threw the last no-hitter against the Red Sox, as a member of the Seattle Mariners in 1993. "He trusts his stuff. He's matured as a pitcher. And opportunity. A lot of times opportunity gives you that chance to get out there every fifth day."
In his 7⅔ innings, Arrieta walked one and struck out 10. The 120 pitches marked a career high. He faced no real scary moments against the Red Sox lineup, and Renteria said it was likely Arrieta would have gone back out for the ninth, even with the high pitch count, if the no-hitter still was intact.
Everyone on the Cubs seemed touched by the ovation Arrieta received from the heavily partisan Boston crowd.
"That was awesome," Renteria said. "We were all gathered at the mound, and I looked at all these guys (and said), 'Look at this.' That's some kind of awesome. I tip my cap to everybody because that was some show of respect."
The Cubs obtained Arrieta last July 2 in a trade with Baltimore that also brought reliever Pedro Strop in exchange for pitcher Scott Feldman, who is now with Houston. Arrieta may become even more important to the Cubs if they trade away starting pitchers Jeff Samardzija and-or Jason Hammel by the July 31 nonwaiver deadline.
But for the second time in 2 starts, he was content to savor the moment.
"Something like that in Fenway is pretty rare for an opposing team," he said. "I got some goose bumps there. And that's kind of why you play this game, for moments like that. Just very thankful to be a part of something like that and to get another win. It feels good."