A large part of throwing a no-hitter is getting over the fact that you're throwing one. As the game goes on and the lonely bastard in the middle of the diamond gets closer to immortality, the tension in the park and in the pitcher builds. Trying to throw a no-hitter is such a mind fuck that it's considered the height of dickery for a teammate to acknowledge the no-hitter until the final out is recorded.
But baseball history was the last thing on Ellis' mind, keeping his shit together while a bunch of giant lizards fucked in the on-deck circle being the first.
But before you go trying it, you should know Ellis had the career trajectory of Darryl Strawberry, never reaching his potential because of drug addiction. Instead of being a household name, Dock Ellis is just that guy who threw a no-hitter on acid.
Samuel Whittlemore Was the Hardest Man in American History
Yes, American history is full of heroes. This whole list is full of great men and women who built this country with sweat and grit and probably lots of assorted oils, too. Everyone here is a badass. But none of these people hold a candle -- or even a goddamn glow-in-the-dark key chain -- to Samuel Whittlemore.
We're going back a ways -- he was born in England in 1695. He started his military career as a British soldier in one of the innumerable wars France and England fought to determine which nation's accent would go on to grace every villain in American movie history. In 1745, the 50-year-old Sam helped to capture the French Fort Louisburg. He walked away with the sword of an enemy officer who, Samuel claimed, had "died suddenly." In 1758, France and England went to war again (it was a bit of a habit) and the 64-year-old farmer was forced to capture the French fort a second time.
"Ok, but make it quick. I have mountains to punch."
He fought next in the Indian Wars and -- at the age of 69 -- won himself a nice set of dueling pistols whose owner had, again, "died suddenly." The Revolutionary War broke out when Whittlemore was 81 and, finally yielding to his advancing years, the old soldier left the fight up to the capable hands of younger men.
For about 10 seconds. When the fighting at Lexington and Concord resulted in two columns of British soldiers burning homes and farms along their avenue of retreat, Minuteman Whittlemore was moved to action. He joined up with another group of Colonial insurgents, but rejected their guerrilla tactics in favor of a more direct approach: standing in the path of a redcoat advance.
Like this, except he would have melted the tanks.
Sam waited until point-blank range to fire his musket and pistols, bringing three men down and charging the rest of the column with his sword in hand. The British soldiers fired, and one managed to hit Sam in the face. He went down just long enough to be surrounded and bayoneted 13 times.
"It's only a flesh wound!"
A bullet to the face and 13 knife wounds would be enough to stop even the hardiest of rappers. But Sam survived. When his allies found him, he was still conscious and trying to load his musket. The field doctors thought Sam was done for. But he ended up pulling through the night ... and the next 18 years. Whittlemore didn't die until 1793 -- at the age of 98. Or 897 in 1793 years.