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Josh Beckett: No such thing as jinxing a no-hitter

David Brown
Big League Stew

Fourteen years into his career, and a few innings into what became his first no-hitter, right-hander Josh Beckett started making jokes about making history.

''I was joking about it because I was waiting for them to get a hit,'' Beckett said. ''You don't think at this point of your career that you're going to do that. I just don't feel that my stuff is good enough to do that. I'm probably as hard on myself as anybody.''

But what about jinxing it? You know, the whole deal we've been led to believe over the years where teammates STAY AWAY FROM THE PITCHER in the dugout when there's a no-no going? And even if they dare approach him, they DON'T TALK TO HIM, even about the weather. They certainly don't REFERENCE THE NO-HITTER to him as it's going on. Heaven forbid. Actually, you DON'T SAY THE WORD 'NO-HITTER' in the dugout, even under your breath. What are you, nutzo?

It's all nonsense, Beckett says.

Baseball players tend to be a superstitious lot, certainly sticking to routines and patterns that might, or might not, have something to do with winning. Beckett's opinion on no-no's isn't universally held among major leaguers, but at least there's some kind of pseudo-psychology suggesting that keeping quiet around a pitcher throwing a no-hitter at least couldn't hurt. Adrian Gonzalez going up to Beckett every moment and obnoxiously going "No-hitter!" might, somehow affect Beckett's performance. Maybe. Probably not. Regardless, Beckett's assertion about superstition should clue us in on a certainty:

There's nothing we can do to jinx a no-no.

So the next time a pitcher from your home-town team is closing in on history, don't get mad at the broadcaster for mentioning there's a no-hitter going on. It's his or her job. Even if you're at the ballpark, don't be afraid to utter the phrase "no-hitter" — even a million times, like you're trying to summon an army of Beetlejuices. You can't make Michael Keaton appear, unless you're him. And the same goes for social media. There's no such thing as jinxing a no-hitter on Twitter. Unless the pitcher brings a mobile device with him to the mound and live-tweets it. Then, maybe.

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David Brown is an editor for Big League Stew on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at rdbrown@yahoo-inc.com and follow him on Twitter!

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