On Sunday, the Tampa Bay Rays hosted the Baltimore Orioles with the lead for the final wild card spot on the line. Drew Rasmussen got the start for Tampa Bay and certainly made the most of it. He tossed the best game of his big league career, taking a perfect game into the 9th inning.
Rasmussen would allow a leadoff double to Jorge Mateo, ending his bid for perfection. However, in between innings, baseball columnist Bob Nightengale brought attention to the perfect game in motion.
Tampa Bay #Rays pitcher Drew Rasmussen just three outs away from making history
— Bob Nightengale (@BNightengale) August 14, 2022
It is well known in baseball circles that when a pitcher has a no-hitter going, to leave him alone. You don’t talk about it, you don’t write about it. You just let it happen. Nightengale is learning that the rule goes for those who cover sports as well. Baseball fans went on a tirade blaming Nightengale for Rasmussen’s double allowed.
You couldn’t shut up for 5 minutes Bob, really???
— birdie🐥 (@baseballbirdie) August 14, 2022
SHUT UP BOOB
— Move the Rays to tampa (@SznFranco) August 14, 2022
— Aaron (@_ayyDubs) August 14, 2022
— bag (@mookiebag) August 14, 2022
Drew Rasmussen: Tossing a perfect game
Bob Nightengale: pic.twitter.com/fjuQzoGQtV
— Brian Y (@byysports) August 14, 2022
Rasmussen, despite giving up the hit, still made history Sunday. He became the first pitcher in the last 20 years to toss seven perfect innings while needing nine or fewer pitches per inning.
The Rays would go on to win, 4-1. They are not 1.5 games ahead of the Orioles for the final wild card. However, there are still a number of teams in the mix. The Chicago White Sox and Minnesota Twins are two games back each, with the Boston Red Sox 4.5 games back.
Drew Rasmussen is having a fantastic year for the Rays. He is 7-4 with a 2.80 ERA and a 1.08 WHIP. There are still a little over six weeks remaining in the regular season. But if the Rays continue to pitch the way they have this season, it’s going to be hard to catch them.