On July 23, 2009, Chicago White Sox legend Mark Buerhle became the 18th pitcher to throw a perfect game in major-league history, versus the Tampa Bay Rays. The Southside southpaw was just the sixth pitcher in MLB history to throw both a perfect game and a no-hitter, which he did against Texas on April 18, 2007. He was also the second White Sox pitcher to ever throw two no-hitters (Frank Smith – 1905, 1908).
Although he retired many Tampa hitters on soft contact, it wasn’t totally smooth sailing for Buehrle in this game. He can thank Sox OF Dewayne Wise, who entered the game as a defensive replacement, for preserving his perfect game bid in the top of the 9th inning by robbing a potential home run on a drive hit to left field by Tampa OF Gabe Kapler (now manager of the Philadelphia Phillies).
This performance helped seal Buehrle’s position as an all-time Sox great after having led the Southsiders to a World Series title over the Houston Astros (then part of the National League) in 2005. He finished his 16-year career in Toronto, with a final win-loss record of 214-60.
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I grew up a Cubs fan in Northwest Illinois and became an avid follower of the team during the Sosa-McGwire home run chase. Now I am the #1 Cubs fan in Toronto, Canada. You can find me on Twitter @Troll_Hamels (personal) and @farnorthsider (blog).