(Editor’s Note: Following the recent cancellation of the 2020 Minor League Baseball season, the Hickory Crawdads won’t take the field again until next spring. Consequently, the Hickory Daily Record has decided to introduce a new feature called “Throwback Thursday,” where we will briefly revisit some of the major events in the history of the Crawdads once a week for the foreseeable future.)
Since their inaugural season in 1993, Hickory Crawdads pitchers have provided countless memorable performances. But only one nine-inning no-hitter has been thrown in team history, and it came all the way back on May 15, 1993, when Wayne Lindemann no-hit the Albany (Georgia) Polecats in a 1-0 Hickory win.
Lindemann accomplished the feat on the road, and his first of two complete games during the 1993 season resulted in the only shutout thrown by a Crawdads pitcher that year. Twenty-three years old at the time, the 6-foot-1, 205-pound left-hander started 15 games in ’93, finishing with a 6-8 record and a 3.62 ERA.
Lindemann also struck out 58 batters in 99 1/3 innings during the Crawdads’ debut season, when they were the Class A affiliate of the Chicago White Sox. He remained in the White Sox system through 1995, although he never advanced past high-A ball.
Nevertheless, Lindemann’s mid-May outing from 27 years ago remains one of the most exciting days in Crawdads history. Others have come close to matching his achievement, but no other Hickory hurler has been able to make it happen.
Not only that, but Lindemann also got the chance to play alongside future major leaguers such as pitchers Mike Bertotti, Tom Fordham and Nerio Rodriguez (who was a catcher later converted into a pitcher), infielders Chris Tremie, Frank Menechino and Greg Norton and outfielder Magglio Ordonez. In 2014, Ordonez was named to the Crawdads’ initial Hall of Fame class following a 15-year Major League Baseball (MLB) career for the White Sox and the Detroit Tigers.
All told, Lindemann posted an overall record of 25-20 as part of the White Sox organization, appearing in 96 games and making 69 starts. He had a career 4.39 ERA in the minor leagues and registered seven complete games, two saves and 320 strikeouts in 474 1/3 total innings.
In addition to his time in Hickory, Lindemann also played for the following teams associated with the White Sox: the Utica Blue Sox of the New York-Penn League, the South Bend White Sox/Silver Hawks of the Midwest League and the Prince William Cannons of the Carolina League. He was born in Longview, Washington, and was selected in the 20th round of the 1992 MLB draft.
The Hickory Daily Record sports department can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.