People have struggled for more than a century trying to describe each of the 21 perfect games in major league history – but Brendan Ryan had a fresh take on the one Philip Humber pitched against Seattle.
A day after Humber’s perfecto, Ryan was asked what the first eight innings were like when he watched from the bench.
“It was like somebody messing with you, and you say ‘Dude! Dude! Dude!’ but he doesn’t stop it,” Ryan said. “That’s what it was like.”
Manager Eric Wedge admitted Sunday morning he hadn’t slept the night after the White Sox beat the Mariners, 4-0. Nor would he turn on his television to watch highlights.
“I listened to a lot of music last night,” Wedge said. “Johnny Cash and Waylon Jennings.”
Felix Hernandez had a pitcher’s take on the perfect game.
“I want one, too. I think about it all the time,” Felix said.
“Everything has to be perfect in a game like that – your command, your pitch count, your teammates. And you have to have a little luck, too.”
Still, in the Mariners clubhouse it was Ryan – who made the final out when he tried to check his swing and was called out – who couldn’t get past that perfect game.
“I haven’t stopped thinking about it. There’s no closure,” Ryan said. “I can’t believe he threw me a ‘chase’ slider on a 3-2 count.
“Have I gone over and over it in my head? I don’t think I ever stopped. I was watching MLB TV last night and they said I ‘clearly swung’ at the pitch.
“I thought, ‘OK, I’ll remember you and you and you … forever.’
“It’s a movie I’ll never see the end of. I feel like I’m still out there,” Ryan said.
Wedge knew it made the Mariners’ 2012 offense look terrible.
“For the doubting Thomases, that was their best day,” Wedge said.
“We will figure this out, and figure it out sooner rather than later. Now, we see how we respond to it.
“I’m in uncharted waters and the players are, too.”
How tough is it pitching a perfect game? In the fourth inning Sunday, Casper Wells’ pop fly disappeared on White Sox outfielder Brent Lillibridge. Shortstop Alexei Ramirez couldn’t get there, and it dropped for a base hit. ... After pitching well in his first start, veteran Kevin Millwood has a 10.61 earned-run average in his past two games. ... Ichiro Suzuki picked up his first outfield assist of 2012 Sunday, throwing Kosuke Fukudome out at the plate. It was Ichiro’s 98th big league assist. .. Wedge said outfielder Mike Carp stopped by Safeco Field on Saturday to push for coming off his rehabilitation assignment soon. “He’s anxious to get back here and I understand that, but he needs more at-bats, and he needs to play the outfield,” Wedge said.
The Mariners have the day off today and will fly to Detroit for the start of a 10-game trip that also will take them to play at the Toronto Blue Jays and Tampa Bay Rays.