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Buehrle Not So Perfect This Time: Rays at White Sox

22 April 2010 No Comment

July 23, 2009 will live in infamy for Chicago White Sox fans and definitely for me. That’s the day Mark Buehrle threw the 18th perfect game in MLB history – one of baseball’s rarest achievements. Since I started attending baseball games I always wanted to see a no-hitter. And, in the 823 regular season MLB games I attended before last July 23, I never saw one let alone see a perfect game. The best I witnessed was five one-hitters and several “close calls.”

So with Buehrle pitching against the Tampa Bay Rays for the first time since last summer, I was obviously heading down to U.S. Cellular Field to watch him. Of course, the fact the wife was not home tonight either had a big impact on my decision.

Beg, Borrow and Deal
I arrived at U.S. Cellular Field and walked towards the main box office on the corner of 35th St. and Shields Ave. After a few minutes, I found a guy who had an extra ticket that he would give me for free. However, there was a catch. He needed to enter the stadium first to see if his contact needed the ticket. He entered the stadium at 6:54 pm – 15 minutes until the first pitch.

I probably would have only waited 5-10 minutes, but he called me at 7:00 pm to say he would be down shortly so I gave him a few more minutes. Yet, at game time (7:10 pm), I still had not heard from him. I called him but there was no answer. Thus, I figured he no longer wanted to give me the ticket so I bought a ticket in Section 120 (face value $39) for $10.

At 7:30 pm the guy called me saying he was leaving the ballpark and that he had the extra ticket for me. I told him I was already in the stadium and he acted annoyed – as though I had inconvenienced him. The inconvenience was expecting me to wait 35 minutes for a free ticket. 15 minutes was already too long – especially considering a free ticket to a White Sox game is not the greatest of generosity. I consistently buy great seats for $5 to $10 per game.

Note on U.S. Cellular Employee Tickets: The ticket I bought for tonight’s game technically had a face value of $19.50 printed on the ticket. The price at the box office for the same seat is $39. What is the discrepancy? The fan who sold me the ticket is an employee of U.S. Cellular. They are allowed to buy tickets for half-price, which means even more savings for you since the employee is only losing $9.50 but you are saving $29 in this example.

Tampa Bay Rays at Chicago White Sox
Mark Buehrle retired the first four batters of the game extending his consecutive out streak versus the Rays to 31. However, the rest of the night was nowhere near perfect as he gave up nine hits and six runs in the next four innings. The White Sox bullpen matched Buehrle’s performance giving up six more runs as the Rays routed the White Sox 12-0.

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