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Tillman talks about first no-hitter

Chris Tillman is a pretty calm guy, but by the voice on the other end of the phone Wednesday night you could tell just how excited the 22-year-old was after pitching his first no-hitter, a 6-0 shutout of the Atlanta Braves Triple-A affiliate in Georgia, Gwinnett.

"It was unbelievable. It felt really good tonight," Tillman said.

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He said he realized he hadn't given up a hit until the fifth, when an error was made and he looked to the scoreboard to see the ruling.

"I looked up and noticed what was going on and then I started noticing my teammates were sitting farther and farther away from me in the dugout, giving me the cold shoulder."

Unbeknownst to him, he was getting stronger as the game went on:

"A couple of the guys said early on I was throwing 88, 90 (mph) and the last couple innings I was at 90, 94. It was all adrenaline."

The opposing crowd cheered for him at the end, but in the mid-innings he heard plenty of fans trying to mess with his focus: "People were screaming 'Don't blow the no-hitter."

Tillman didn't, and he gave credit to his catcher, Adam Donachie as well as his fielders.

"I can't tell you how great the defense was behind me tonight and Donachie called a great game behind the plate. We were on the same page all night."

It was Tillman's first career complete game as well. He said he's had no hitter broken up in the seventh last year in Triple-A and one in the eighth in 2008.

He thought this one was going to be broken up with two outs in the ninth when Matt Young hit a grounder between second and third but shortstop Robert Andino was there.

"I thought it was in the hole, but Andino said he saw (Young) step up in the box and so he shaded toward (the third base) hole. Right off the bat, I thought it was a hit, until I saw Andino get it. Before I knew it, the team tackled me. It was good to have that support."

Tillman is now 2-3 with a 4.05 ERA and said he is feeling better on the mound than he did earlier this month. He is continuing to work on his fastball command with pitching coach Mike Griffin.

"I'm feeling good, starting to feel good. I feel like I'm going to be getting better results."

After the game, Tillman did some interviews, and said his phone wouldn't stop making noise.

"My phone hasn't stopped buzzing. The whole time it was buzzing. It's good to have support."

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