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Rays' Drew Rasmussen Loses Perfect Game Bid vs. Orioles on Jorge Mateo Double in 9th

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured Columnist IVAugust 14, 2022

Duane Burleson/Getty Images

Monday is slated to be the 10-year anniversary of the last perfect game in Major League Baseball history, which was thrown by Félix Hernández of the Seattle Mariners.

Turns out, it was nearly the one-day anniversary.

Tampa Bay Rays starter Drew Rasmussen took a perfect game into the ninth inning during Sunday's matchup against the Baltimore Orioles. He was three outs away from recording the 24th perfect game in MLB history, three of which happened during the 2012 campaign.

However, Jorge Mateo had other ideas and led off the final frame with a double.

Mateo not only broke up the perfect game and no-hitter with one swing, he also came around to score on a wild pitch later in the inning to end the shutout.

Fortunately for Rasmussen and the Rays, Jason Adam closed the door and preserved the 4-1 victory. It was a key win because Baltimore entered Sunday's contest just a half-game behind Tampa Bay for the final American League Wild Card spot.

This was also the rubber match in a three-game series before the Rays head to New York to face the mighty Yankees, so it was a much-needed win with the stretch run looming.

Much of the credit goes to Rasmussen, who struck out seven and had little trouble with Baltimore's lineup. A three-run homer from Randy Arozarena in the third inning and an RBI single from David Peralta in the fifth was more than enough run support given how dialed in the starter was throughout the game.

It was more of the same for the 27-year-old, who hasn't given up more than three runs since June 10 during a stretch that includes eight appearances.

Rasmussen has allowed just two combined runs in three appearances and 17.1 innings in August and will be a weapon for the Rays in a tightly contested playoff race if he continues to pitch at this level.

Unfortunately for him, he would have made history if that level included one more perfect inning Sunday.

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