Sunday, May 17, 2009

A Perfect May Sunday for Baseball

We don't know how today's Yankees-Twins game will turn out, but we do know how their meeting went on May 17, 1998. That it is when David Wells, to paraphrase John Sterling, "achieved baseball immortality".

The man known as Boomer retired all 27 batters he faced, the final- Pat Meares, hit a lazy fly ball that nestled into the glove of right fielder Paul O'Neill for a 4-0 Yankees win.

A joyous celebration followed. The Yankees were so fired up they actually lifted Wells off the ground. No one in their right mind would have attempted that under normal circumstances! (Perhaps that's why Bernie Williams had so much shoulder trouble at the end of his career.)

Wells' opponent that day was future Yankee LaTroy Hawkins. One year later David Cone would achieve perfection against another future Yankee, Javier Vazquez. Needless to say, neither opponent worked out too well in pinstripes.

A.J. Burnett faces Kevin Slowey today, so if somehow Burnett were to match the feat, Slowey would know where his future lies.

Box Score

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