Morning After

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Great Moment

All the noise in the ballpark stopped for a second last night as Mark Buehrle celebrated his no-hitter by hugging and kissing his expentant wife.  The left-hander then bent over and kissed his wife’s pregnant stomach in a moment that was captured by a Tribune photographer in today’s print edition.

Karma

During the postseason of 2005, a daily ritual was for me, Jerry Reinsdorf, Phyllis Merhige and Dennis Gilbert to meet for breakfast each morning.  Everytime we did, we won.

Last night, I sent Kenny Williams and Rick Hahn an email around 6 p.m. asking if they wanted to have dinner in the Scout’s Lounge.  Last year, we ate quite a few times and up til last night, we hadn’t gotten together in 2007 (too many day games).

We met, had dinner, and then we won with a flair.  So early this morning, I sent KW and Rick and email asking if they were free for dinner tonight.  We have a streak going (not that we actually influence anything that happens on the field).

Dye Heroics

In addition to his up-against-the-wall catch last night, how amazing was JD’s at-bat that resulted in his grand slam?  He fouled off tough pitch after tough pitch and then hit a laser just over the left-field fence.  You could hear the ballpark exhale in unison.

Funny Comments From Last Night

As everyone in the clubhouse celebrated postgame, Mark walked in.  "Hey," Paul Konerko said, acting all excited.  "You hit 90 mph on the juggs gun."

In the fifth inning, Buehrle taunted/joked with Toby Hall, saying:

"Better get the champagne ready.  I have a no hitter going."

So much for superstition.

This From Our Friends At Elias Sports Bureau and ESPN:

There have been more than 180,000 games played in major league history, but Wednesday’s Rangers-White Sox game was unique.  It was the first game in major league history in which one player (Mark Buehrle) threw a no-hitter, another (Jermaine Dye) hit a grand-slam home run, and a third (Jim Thome) had a multiple-homer game.

Buehrle faced the minimum 27 batters in his no-hitter against the Rangers.  All that stood between him and a perfect game was a fifth-inning walk to Sammy Sosa – whom Buehrle promptly picked off.

The last two big-leaguers to throw non-perfect-game no-hitters in which they faced the minimum 27 batters were Terry Mulholland and Sandy Koufax.  In 1990, Mulholland, pitching for the Phillies against the Giants, allowed only one base runner (who reached on a Charlie Hayes error; the next batter hit into a double play); back in 1964, Koufax threw a no-no against the Phillies in which he walked rookie Richie Allen, who was then caught stealing.

·       Buehrle, long one of the majors’ fastest workers, completed his no-hitter in just two hours and three minutes.  It was the fastest no-hitter since 1988, when Tom Browning threw a perfect game for the Reds against the Dodgers in one hour, 51 minutes.

·       Buehrle’s mound opponent on Wednesday night, Kevin Millwood of the Rangers, threw a no-hitter five years ago this month.  Only two other no-hitters over the past 30 years came in games in which the opposing starter had himself previously fired a no-hit game.

In 1999, Cardinals rookie Jose Jimenez no-hit the Diamondbacks in a game started by Randy Johnson; and in 1980, the Dodgers’ Jerry Reuss tossed a no-hitter against the Giants, whose starting pitcher was Vida Blue.

And If You Missed It

Fans who missed the game on television, have two options to see the action:

1)  They can sign up for MLB.tv and watch the game via BAM’s archive, or…

Ozzie’s 500th

Tonight marks Ozzie’s 500th game as White Sox manager.  We are digging up more info on this as I write, so I’ll post more later.

2)  They can search for the game via iTunes and download it from there.  Although, it’s not up now (mid morning), it should be soon.

12 Comments

Hey, Scott, can I join you guys for dinner? :-) Great post, loved the story about Mark being so laid back about the no-no, instead of being uptight and superstitious, and saying what he said to Toby. And Paulie’s comment, very funny! So here we are, the first time a team has a no-no, a granny, and a multi-homer game. I guess you could say they were clicking on all cylinders! (Let alone the slick fielding of Crede, Gooch, and Dye. Even the catch by Mac in left was a good effort)

The thing I remember most about Alvarez’s no hitter was when he was one out away, and had to face Cal Ripken Jr…then Dwight Evans…he walked them both, then struck out Mike Milligan (I think that’s his name…feel free to correct me if I’m wrong,Brother Liptak…)to complete the gem…Karkovice ran out to the mound to hug him, and Wilson had a look on his face that said one thing…stunned…
Also, in almost every no hitter, there has to be some solid defense…Lance Johnson made atremendous diving catch in RCF late in the game to preserve the no-no…Last night, it was Dye, Crede,and the rest…

Otherwise, it was a typical Buehrle game…it was over before you realized it had started…2:03…with a lot of first pitch strikes and ground outs…

I was waiting for all the smart a**es out there to criticize ANYTHING about what happened last night…I’m happy to see that White Sox Universe refrained from doing so…UNFORTUNATELY…our favorite weathervane in the tabloid had to pour a unneeded bucket of cold water on the gem with his remarks about his favorite Venezualan sparring partner,and what he had said in the dugout before concerning Mr Sosa…

Jay, do all of us a tremendous favor, won’t you?

DROP DEAD !!!

Believe me, you won’t be missed, you crumbum…

To the entire organization, on a magic night, congratulations…and good job…

Mr. Reifert stole my thunder. I had looked up an all-time list of no-hitters this morning and was reminded that Millwood had thrown one in recent years and was going to note the coincidence. He’s “on the ball” , that guy! The 2006 season was a disappointment for sure, but there were still a few nice moments, like the weekend sweep of the Tigers in July, breaking up the Big Unit’s no-hit bid and then forcing extra innings on Konerko’s bomb, and Freddy Garcia’s near perfect game last September. Last night, however, was the honestly the first time I felt “the magic” since the ’05 World Series. Let’s hope the boys in black can use this as a springboard to return to their winning ways. What a great night!! Thanks, Mark!!

Scott,
Quick question for you… Before each game they sell programs and scorecards. Are the scorecards different for each game or series? If so, is there a chance I can purchase two scorecards from last night? I want to fill one out and frame it with my ticket from the game. I would love to try to get Buerhle to sign it oneday! Thanks.

To avoid any confusion for the uninitiated who are thinking “Was Lance Johnson in the outfield last night?”, I need to say that the catch I mentioned earlier was in Alvarez’s no-hitter back in ’91…my apologies for any confusion…

Tom:

That’s Randy Milligan.

Mark Liptak

hey scott, how about some pictures of the action and celebration on the blog here? i was watching via MLBTV at school here in Bozeman, Montana and the feed cut off about 90 seconds after the final out was recorded, so i didnt get to see any postgame. thanx much..

I am so excited for Mark. I went to college with him at Jeffco. he was a total sweetheart. I wish I could get in touch with him. I have a picture of us together, and would love an autograph.

Not happy with ESPN: I live in AZ and was watching the Bulls/Nets game when all of this was happening. At this point, the Nets were going to win and was anticipating them to switch it to the final 2 outs of the game. As a result, they never bothered to switch it over and had to wait until baseball tonite to see the highlights. If this were the Yankees, Red Sox or Cubs… we all know that our TV sets would be in the action right away.

AB

Does anyone know where to find the game on iTunes?

Hi Folks,

Glad to be back here…

Big thanks go out to Scott Reifert for providing us with his ongoing (Insider) behind-the-scenes insights about Soxdom.

What an extraordinary performance by Mark Buehrle last night! AJ deserves some of the credit for calling a masterful game… and the defense (which had been erratic throughout the mostly frigid 13-game opening season stretch) was stellar on this heartwarming but chilly historic day in the windy city.

It was great to watch the White Sox bats show some life last night. There are some signs of life on the offensive front for the men in black:

Clearly, Jim Thome his lead the charge… with a .342 batting average, .519 on-base%, .789 slugging%, 5 HRs, 8 RBIs and 14 BBs so far this season.

Jermaine Dye has started to round into form over the past 6 games – batting .318 and reaching base 10 out of his last 25 plate appearances, with 3 HRs & 9 RBIs during this productive stretch.

Iguchi has started to come around, by hitting the ball to all fields and reaching base 9 times over his last 30 plate appearances and stealing bases on consecutive nights.

Over the past 6 games, A.J. Pierzynski has demonstrated discipline and patience at the plate, been hitting the ball to all fields, going deep into counts and (as a result of this approach) has reached base 8 of his last 21 plate appearances (with just 1 strike out).

Unfortunately, the 2007 White Sox hitting woes are widespread throughout much of the lineup and on the bench. They are dead last in MLB with a paltry team Batting Average of .215, and are second to last in the AL in runs scored.

The WS offensive difficulties begin with Darin Erstad at the lead-off spot and (prior to Posednik’s freak injury) the #2 slot. Erstad needs to find a way to exploit his exceptional speed and extensive MLB experience by finding other ways to set the table at the top of the batting order. Over the past 9 games, Erstad has hit a disastrous .063 with a paltry 2 singles, 1 lone walk, 1 SB and not a single run scored to show for his last 33 plate appearances. When a lead-off man struggles at the plate, he must find other ways to generate solid ABs (with effective situational hitting: including more bunt single attempts, coaxing walks, laying down sacrifice bunts, and moving base runners into scoring position with productive outs).

As for Joe Crede and Paul Konerko’s early season hitting challenges… Unlike last year… they clearly haven’t been looking to drive the ball to the opposite field. Crede and Konerko both seem to be trying to pull the ball on virtually every swing, in every situation. When the middle of the WS line-up is prepared (and committed) to drive the ball to all fields, they are as productive (and destructive) as the heart of any line-up in MLB. If Greg Walker can get Joe and Paulie to return to the approach that made them so successful at the plate in the recent past, they will be far more patient at the plate, have longer looks on off-speed stuff, pulling off the ball and getting off-stride far less, and have the ability to do some serious damage on breaking balls and off-speed pitches.

I am confident that as weather heats up… so will the WS bats. Hopefully, the Sox starting pitching will remain solid and their AL Central foes will continue to beat up on each other so the WS will be poised and within striking distance as they put together prolonged winning streaks in the summer months.

Let’s go White Sox!

Michael Harkins

Tucson, AZ

ohhh my god!!!
This morning I turned on the radio and I heard the tail-end of a story so all I heard was something like “Wow… WHAT a performance from Mark Buerhle last night. Just.. wow” so I was thinking “WHAT performance!?” and I looked on the website and I was just so proud and ecstatic!

Kinda weird though… the last one happened shortly before I was born, and this one happened when I wasn’t watching. Actually I didn’t think there was a game last night. Hmm…. makes me wonder.

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