Well, unfortunately Angels pitcher Jered Weaver found out the answer on Saturday night. There are 8 ways a batter can reach first base, and only one of them is by getting a "hit." And, for those of you that are challenged in the rules of baseball, here are the 8 ways to get to first base:
3. Hit by Pitch
4. Fielder's Choice
5. Reached on Error (includes MLB Official Rule 7.05 i)
6. Dropped Third Strike
7. Catcher's Interference (hindering the batter while in the batter's box)
8. Fielder's Obstruction (hindering the batter while he is running to first base)
Some other suggestions
(many argue between 9 and 11 different ways to get to first!)
Runner's Interference (batted ball hits a runner in fair territory. The runner is out, and the batter is awarded a hit). This is not a separate item in the list since it's included as a Hit.
Entering game as a pinch runner (not included because the question seems focused on the batter reaching first base).
Certain illegal pitching actions are penalized by adding a ball to the count. This may result in a walk, which is already on the list.
Officially, the "no hitter" didn't count because the Angels were the visiting team, and the home team (the Dodgers) didn't take their last bat in the 9th. But still, it has to be frustrating to throw 6 innings of no hit baseball, and have your reliever finish the game with no hits (so it would have been a "combined" no hitter) and then lose the game.
Weird. Freaky. And only the 5th time in the majors since 1900 when the winning team didn’t get a hit. It's statistics like this that make you love and hate America's greatest game.