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Today, we add another chapter to an already impressive collection of intoxicated baseball folklore. Now alongside the likes of David Wells’ three sheets to the wind perfect game, Dock Ellis’ LSD trip of a no-no, and Mickey Mantle’s entire career, we have Mark Buehrle and the 2005 Chicago White Sox.
From CSN Chicago:
Around the 7th inning in Game 3, Buehrle approached White Sox pitching coach Don Cooper with a styrofoam cup in his hand.
“I look in it, there’s a beer in there,” Cooper told CSN’s David Kaplan on SportsTalk Live Monday. “It wasn’t uncommon for guys on the 2005 staff — the starters when they weren’t pitching — to enjoy a cocktail from time to time.”
With the game tied, Buehrle then proceeded to ask Cooper if the White Sox needed him to pitch at all. The White Sox pitching coach turned to Buehrle and jokingly said, “Heck no, we’re trying to win this game. We don’t want you in it.”
Cooper then hedged his bet by saying that the only way Buehrle would enter the game is if the White Sox went in to 13 or 14 innings.
Sure enough, it did. And in the 14th inning, Buehrle was the only pitcher left for the White Sox.
The result? Buehrle came in relief and recorded the final out of the game, picking up the save as the White Sox took a 3-0 series lead.
If throwing a successful inning of relief piss drunk in Comp A Fraternity League Softball is an accomplishment, and it is, then taking the hill in Game 3 of the World Series shit-housed and picking up a save is a downright Herculean feat. Sure, Mark Buehrle didn’t have to deal with a subjective 6-12 feet pitch height rule from umpires with the visual perception of a cataracts-ridden Helen Keller and Ray Charles lovechild whose favorite way to pass the time is staring directly into the sun, but he did have to record the final out against a major league hitter in the biggest spot of his life after throwing seven strong the day before.
Then again, when you have just the right amount of liquid courage in the system, there’s not much you can’t do — or so you think — and that’s ninety percent of half the battle according to Yogi Berra. The minute an inhibition-less Buehrle stepped onto that mound, the Astros might as well have laid their bats on the ground and gone home..
[via CSN Chicago]
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