Mark Buehrle's Perfect Game Will Be Last For a While

Cody Eding@edingcContributor IJuly 23, 2009

CHICAGO, IL - JULY 23: Pitcher Mark Buehrle #56 of the Chicago White Sox celebrates after pitching a perfect game as he is grabbed by first baseman Josh Fields #7 against the Tampa Bay Rays at U.S. Cellular Field on July 23, 2009 in Chicago, Illinois. The The White Sox defeated the Rays 5-0. (Photo by Scott Boehm/Getty Images)

There are not too many ways to better describe a perfect game than, well, perfect.

Given the significance the accomplishment, the words magical, spectacular, or outstanding might also fit the bill.

But one thing is certain. Perfect games do not happen often, and when they do it is a really big deal.

Mark Buehrle's blanking of the Tampa Bay Rays en route to a 5-0 victory for the Chicago White Sox is nothing short of amazing.

With records falling and feats being achieved each and every year, the elusive perfect game has only been completed a handful of times in baseball history. Buehrle's gem is the 17th regular season perfect game to happen in baseball's long and extensive history.

For comparison, consider the all-important home run total. Five-hundred home runs used to be a feat—even Hall of Fame worthy. With the advent of performance-enhancing drugs, 500 home runs is not so noteworthy. There are 25 members in the club; 11 of them have entered since 1990.

A perfect game is a much bigger deal. Think hitting .400 big. And it is only going to get bigger.

As baseball progresses, hitters are going to get even better, bigger, stronger, and faster. Lineups will become more potent.

While pitching will improve, they will still have to cope.

Cope is exactly what Buehrle did, sitting down 27 straight members of the Rays' powerful, star-studded lineup.

B.J. Upton 0-for-3. Carlos Pena 0-for-3. Carl Crawford 0-for-3. Evan Longoria 0-for-3.

And the list goes on.

Of course, all perfect games are never devoid of great defensive plays. In Buehrle's case, credit centerfielder Dewayne Wise's ninth-inning catch that was, simply put, magical.

Buehrle's perfect game is the first since 2004. If history stays its course, it will be a long, long time before we ever see another.