There have only been 21 perfect games in the history of Major League Baseball, but the Chicago White Sox have three of them. Yesterday afternoon, Philip Humber defied his humble resume and blanked the Seattle Mariners, 4 – 0, without allowing a single baserunner.
That last out was something – on a 3 – 2 pitch to Brendan Ryan, Humber threw a slider that Ryan half-swung at. Ryan felt he checked his swing – but the home plate umpire, Brian Runge, called it a swing immediately. However – the pitch got away from catcher A.J. Pierzinski, who had to run back toward the backstop to retrieve the ball and fire it to first for the last out. Ryan, had he chosen to run hard to first, might have beaten the throw, but halfway down the first base line, he chose to argue with the umpire over the swinging strike call. [ESPN]
When Dallas Braden threw his perfect game, I noted that his resume was rather short prior to pitching his gem. For Humber, this was his 30th career start, winning his twelfth decision. He had had five cups of coffee since first racing through the Mets chain in 2006, and only last year had he stayed with a team longer than a few weeks. Already 29, Humber isn’t a bad pitcher – his career numbers are actually not too bad, he just hasn’t ever stuck. One assumes he’ll hang around as long as he stays healthy now, though…
The last White Sox perfect game came in 2009 when Mark Buehrle was rescued by a Dewayne Wise miraculous catch in the ninth inning. The first one, thrown in 1922 by Charles Robertson in his fifth major league outing, I wrote about here.
Well – I checked and there isn’t a “FireBobbyValentine.com” or “FireBobbyV.com” site yet.
It won’t be long, though. The Sox got off to a 9 – 0 lead against the Yankees yesterday, but the bullpen gave up 15 runs in the last three innings, including back to back seven-spots in the seventh and eighth innings, to blow the game and lose, 15 – 9.
To help remedy the problem of having a lack of productive outfielders, the Red Sox acquired Cubs centerfielder Marlon Byrd, a mid-30s hustling outfielder with limited range and a failing bat, for former reliever prospect Michael Bowden. The Red Sox REALLY need to remedy the pitching staff, considering the starters are carrying a 6+ ERA since September 1st, and they lost their closer in Spring Training. [SI/CNN]
The Phillies placed Cliff Lee on the 15-Day DL with an oblique strain suffered in the 10th inning of his outing in San Francisco. The Phillies are using caution, hoping the strain doesn’t become a tear. Joe Savery, already up and down once this season, returns to take Lee’s spot on the roster. Kyle Kendrick will likely take Lee’s spot in the rotation. [ESPN]
Hurry up and acquire Francisco Cordero for your fantasy team! The Toronto Blue Jays placed closer Sergio Santos on the 15-Day DL with inflammation in his throwing shoulder. Cordero will get the save opportunities, but lefty Evan Crawford will get the roster spot for the time being. Crawford has had improving strikeout rates in the minors, but occasionally is a bit wild. Until he gets that under control, he won’t be used in high leverage situations. [ESPN]
The Yankees, frequently snake bit when acquiring pitchers, are going to start to wonder if that Michael Pineda for Jesus Montero trade was a good idea. After throwing 15 pitches in a rehab start, Pineda was shut down with soreness in his shoulder and will be given an MRI. Joe Girardi’s comment? “Not good.”
Cubs starter Ryan Dempster will go on the 15-Day DL with a strained right quadriceps muscle. Coming back to Chicago will be Randy Wells, who had struggled in his three AAA starts. The Cubs are already on pace for about 100 losses, they don’t need to lose Dempster for any amount of time.
The Diamondbacks placed starter Daniel Hudson on the 15-Day DL with a right shoulder impingement. Jonathan Albaledejo will get some time on the roster in his absence.
Also, Royals pitcher Greg Holland heads to the DL wiht a stress reaction in his left rib. That doesn’t sound fun… Returning from AAA Omaha is Jeremy Jeffress, a reliever with a reputation for throwing smoke and smoking pot.
A.J. Burnett returned from his eye injury to pitch the Pirates to a victory yesterday.
The Orioles traded Josh Bell to Arizona for future considerations.
The Tigers recalled pitcher Thad Weber from AAA Toledo and sent down struggling pitcher Daniel Schlereth for a little extra work.
Oakland recalled lefty pitcher Pedro Figueroa from AAA Sacramento, and dispatched Graham Godfrey to AAA.
Those celebrating with cake, cards, and remembrances include:
(1901) Taylor Douthit
(1918) Mickey Vernon – fine first baseman of the 1940s and 1950s.
(1923) Preston Gomez – decent player, managed the Padres and Cubs some time back.
(1955) David Clyde – high school to the majors, and then struggled with life – not just baseball.
(1956) Moose Haas
(1959) Terry (Tito) Francona
(1961) Jimmy Key
(1966) Mickey Morandini
(1988) Dee Gordon