Saturday morning Phil Humber was just another major-league pitcher for the White Sox.
By early-evening Saturday, he was world famous after throwing just the 21st perfect game in MLB history. With his new fame comes attention from several unexpected individuals. That was the case Sunday afternoon, when Sports Illustrated swimsuit edition cover model Kate Upton sent the following tweet to Humber:
Congrats to @Philip_Humber of the White Sox for getting into the Perfect Club. Looking forward to fitting your jacket! 2ksports hah Kate Upton (@KateUpton) April 22, 2012Of course, Upton was referring to her MLB 2K12 commercial about the "Perfect Club," where she only lets in pitchers who have thrown a perfect game. In the ad, she lets Randy Johnson pass while denying Justin Verlander. If you haven't seen it, or just want to watch it again, check it out below:
In the second inning Daniel Palka solidly lined a ball up the middle that looked like a sure hit off the bat. The problem? The Tigers defense was shifted perfectly to that spot for a lineout.
MLB Statcast gave Palka’s lineout an expected batting average of .650. It seemed like just another night like the rest of them have gone for Palka in the majors in 2019.
He entered Friday with a .034 batting average (2-for-59). After hitting 27 home runs with 45 extra base hits and a .778 OPS as a rookie in 2018, Palka hasn’t been able to do much of anything in a White Sox uniform.
That lineout appeared to be another “nothing can go right” moment. However, Palka’s Friday turned around.
His next time up, he pounded a ground ball that found a hole. Statcast gave that one a 31 percent chance of getting a hit, so he broke even after getting robbed earlier. The amusing thing is that Palka’s groundball single had an exit velocity of 108.9 mph, which was the second hardest hit ball of the game.
Palka later added a bloop single in the seventh and a line drive hit in the ninth to finish with a three hit day. Palka entered the day with two hits in 23 games and got three hits in Friday alone.
Even with the 3-for-5 night, Palka’s batting average is still only .072, but he more than doubled it in one game.
Is this relevant to the future of the White Sox? Almost certainly not, but Palka showed some promise in his rookie season and has been through an absolute nightmare this season. The mental side of going through his 0-for-32 start to the season and the continued struggles since could not have been easy. For at least one night in 2019 Palka had a good game at the plate.
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The Chicago Bears avoided the dreaded 0-2 start by defeating the Denver Broncos last Sunday in what's become something of an instant classic for Bears fans. Eddy Pineiro's 53-yard game-winner injected life into an otherwise lifeless start to the season, and while it was incredible to watch unfold live, NFL Films' recap of the final minute is goosebump-inducing.
"We need one second and the ball," Matt Nagy said in the Bears locker room after the win. "And that's a credit to you guys for never giving up. I dont care about stats, we got the dub!"
The Nagy-booms that followed were epic. Check it out: