When Clayton Kershaw came within one error of a perfect game Wednesday night, he added "no-hitter" to a list of accolades and achievements that already included three ERA titles, two Cy Young awards, and a Triple Crown. In fact, he did more than that—going by Bill James's old game score metric, he pitched the second-best nine-inning game on record, behind only Kerry Wood's 20-strikeout masterpiece in 1998.
The stats are one thing, but overlaying video of all 15 of his strikeout pitches from the no-hitter offers something else. Pay close attention to Kershaw's delivery. We didn't align the video layers to his position; we used fixed positions. Despite that, from the first inning to the ninth, his delivery is perfectly consistent. Look at how little ghosting there is of the images up until the release point; that's amazing discipline. Here's a slowed-down video so you can admire it even better:
(Inspired by Drew Sheppard's awesome GIF of Yu Darvish.)