Philip Humber has thrown the 21st perfect game in baseball history

Philip Humber has thrown the 21st perfect game in baseball history

Philip Humber's charming redemption story has reached a stunning climax, as he retired all 27 batters he faced in a 4-0 victory over the Seattle Mariners.

Humber struck out 9 using a incredible curveball, and induced loads of weak contact all day.  A 4th inning lineout by Dustin Ackley was the only hard hit ball of the game.

While he obviously wasn't challenged all game, the drama ramped up in the 9th.  Humber fell behind 3-0 to Michael Saunders before recovering to record the strikeout.  He similarly fell into a 3-2 count against final batter Brendan Ryan, and on his second 3-2 delivery, induced a check swing from Ryan on a curveball in the dirt that was ruled strike three.  As Ryan argued the call, A.J. Pierzynski gathered it and threw the first to complete the perfecto.  He was immediately mobbed on the field, and toasted to in the locker room.

While acknowledging possible avenues for digression like "the Mariners lineup is terrible" and "the final strike of the game was highly dubious and Fox inexplicably didn't show the replay",  this is a truly incredible accomplishment by Philip Humber.  He's clawed his way up from being an anonymous post-Tommy John surgery, waiver-wire fill-in, to a guy with a steady spot in the rotation, to a fringe All-Star candidate, and now someone with a perfect game.

As hard and improbable as Humber's path has been, it simply doesn't get more rare than this.

Thanks for this one, Philip.  I know I'll never forget it.

 

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  • I was listening on the radio. Not being able to watch Humber pitch the ninth, and clinging to every word of the broadcast was kind of a cool throwback to a bygone era, and fitting for such a historic moment. However, it was one a bit undercut by Ed Farmer's call after the last out. Something like, "And Phil Humber has thrown a perfect game on Saturday afternoon at U.S. Cellular Field!" Oh Farmio.

    Well, I think this sentiment has already proved, ya know, dead friggin' on!: "Perhaps it's residual guilt from being negative on so many other White Sox players, but I'm bullish on Humber." --James Fegan "White Sox Season Preview - Starting Rotation" Mar 22, 2012

  • In reply to Chris Lamberti:

    I just thought he got judged too harshly for his 2nd half regression, it was something that was bound to happen but didn't make him a hack overnight, especially since his strikeouts spiked.

    This game doesn't necessarily make him Pitching Jesus, either

  • In reply to James Fegan:

    Oh but you're wrong, he IS pitching Jesus.

    "@Philip_Humber
    If you're looking for answers, you've come to the wrong place. But, Jesus has them! Love Him and my beautiful wife. Also, I play for the #WhiteSox"

  • In reply to Chris Lamberti:

    I'd probably need more inside information to have any real conversation about the White Sox culture, but the trade off seems to be a lot of in-your-face Christian, boring family-type guys, and next to nothing in terms of character issues. It's a deal I'm pretty ok with.

  • In reply to James Fegan:

    I would say that one (devout Christianity) does not necessarily preclude the other ("character issues"). Josh Hamilton comes to mind. So does Bobby Jenks.

    I'm not necessarily in agreement with everything Gary Sheffield (who sprang to mind as the antithesis) has done or said, but at least he challenges us to think about some important social issues. He also won a World Series and was a big part of a more than a few great teams, so it's not like being a pain in the ass precludes team success.

    Generally, the lack of separation of church and baseball is concerning to me.

  • In reply to Chris Lamberti:

    I didn't mean to indicate I thought the two were forever connected at all. I'm simply referring to the track record of the White Sox of recent years.

  • In reply to James Fegan:

    There does seem to be a lot of genuine humility on this team, and that might be due to the fact that the Sox have a lot of reclamation projects; players who have come back from the dead. And young players who haven't experienced much success. And others who grew up in Cuba.

    Chris Sale is the guy I don't get. He should have an ego.

  • In reply to Chris Lamberti:

    Ah, Chris Sale, him I feel like I can comment on somewhat. Sale has an ego kinda like I have an ego. He's very confident about his ability and he has a very specific idea of what he deserves, but it seems like he's able to sit on it for a while, and is naturally not one to be extroverted.

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