Thursday, July 23, 2009

Former Knight Wise saves Buehrle perfect game

Mark Buehrle may not believe in Déjà Vu.

But he's got to be a little suspicious after today.

Chicago LHP Buehrle spun a perfect game against the Tampa Bay this afternoon, the first perfect game since Randy Johnson's 2004 gem, and only the 16th pitcher to accomplish the feat in MLB history.  That's not the Déjà part.

This is. On April 18, 2007, Buehrle threw a no-hitter against the Texas Rangers in a game lasting 2 hours and 3 minutes. Guess how long today's perfect game lasted? Yup: 2:03.

That's not all. Eric Cooper was the home plate umpire during Buehrle's 2007 no-no. Who was behind the plate today? Why, of course, Mr. Cooper.

You realize there's 68 full-time MLB umpires out there, right?

Perhaps less Déjà but still with plenty of Vu is that each game featured a great catch in center field.  In 2007, Aaron Rowand banged up against the fence to save the no-hitter, while former Charlotte Knight DeWayne Wise did Rowan one better.

Gabe Kapler drove a 2-2 pitch into left-center, where Wise made possibly the best clutch perfect game-saving catch anyone can remember.

"I was hoping it was staying in there, give him enough room to catch it," said Buehrle, who received a congratulatory call from President Obama, an unabashed White Sox fan. 

Wise sprinted to exactly the perfect spot, robbed Kapler of a home run, but the impact of hitting the wall jarred the ball loose, temporarily dislodging it before Wise snagged it with his bare-hand as he fell to the ground. 

And Wise had just entered the game that inning as a defensive replacement.

Check it out yourself: 

"I was so pumped when I caught it," Wise said. "It was an unbelievable feeling."

Nobody knew that more than Buehrle. I'd say dinner at Ruth's Chris is on him sometime very soon.

Fantasy Spin: A quick quiz: Who belongs to which set of numbers? 3.78 ERA, 1.26 WHIP  and 3.66, 1.24 WHIP.  The first is Buehrle and the second is Yankees' C.C. Sabathia. Sure, Sabathia also comes with a truckload of K's, but Buehrle is worst-case a poor-man's version with similar other numbers. The lefty struck out six on Thursday and now sports a 3.28 ERA, 1.10 WHIP and 11 wins. Frankly, I still can't get the taste of 2006 out of my mouth, but even with 120-130 Ks a year, he's still a top 35 pitching option.


704Champ said...

Rowand, with a D

Tim said...

and former Charlotte 49er catcher Jeff Berry is Buehrle's agent