N.H. High Schooler With Four Straight No-Hitters Reveals Odd Secret To Success

by NESN Staff

May 25, 2017

Brennen Oxford has taken the high school baseball world by storm.

The junior pitcher from Oyster River (Durham, N.H.) High School is in the midst of an incredible stretch, having thrown four consecutive no-hitters. That’s right: Oxford hasn’t allowed a hit in 30.2 innings, striking out 46 batters and walking just 13 during that span.

Oxford’s historic run has thrust him in the national spotlight, and naturally, everyone wants to know the secret behind his recent success. But apparently it’s not a scorching fastball or a devastating curveball — it’s a toy snake.

In a feature on Oxford for Bleacher Report, author Bill Speros revealed the 17-year-old’s strange good luck charm: an 18-inch-long wooden toy snake called a What’ Zit that’s “made of interconnecting blocks (and) held together with a bungee cord.”

As the story goes, Oxford bought the trinket for $4.95 while on a school field trip to Boston’s Museum of Fine Arts and had it with him in the dugout for his first no-hitter. And as the outs started to pile up, the “Dugout Snake” stayed.

“I usually just sit that in the dugout fence and hope it doesn’t hit the ground,” Oxford told Speros. “If it hits the ground, that’s bad luck. And it has to be straight, too. Straight on the fence in the dugout, without hitting the ground.”

Turns out that’s not Oxford’s only superstition. He also does exactly one field-length sprint from the left field foul pole before his outings and “takes one gulp of water, spits it out, then drinks the next gulp before each start.”

Of course, Oxford’s teammates aren’t complaining, and they’ll likely let him do whatever he wants as he goes for no-no No. 5 on Friday.

Thumbnail photo via Peter G. Aiken/USA TODAY Sports Images

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