Tampa Bay Rays SP Drew Rasmussen came ever so close to reaching baseball immortality Sunday afternoon against the Baltimore Orioles.
The 27-year-old brought his best stuff to the mound Sunday, breezing through eight innings without allowing a hit or walking a batter.
However, Baltimore’s Jorge Mateo doubled off Rasmussen to start the ninth inning, breaking up the perfect game bid.
A batter later, Rasmussen would exit the game in favor of reliever Jason Adam, who closed out a 4-1 Tampa Bay victory.
Rasmussen threw just 87 pitches in 8.1 innings of work, allowing a hit and an earned run, with seven strikeouts. It was the first time this season Rasmussen pitched past the seventh inning and his longest outing since allowing just three hits in seven innings against the Chicago White Sox on June 4.
The Rays acquired Rasmussen and pitcher J.P. Feyereisen in a trade last season with the Milwaukee Brewers in exchange for shortstop Willy Adames and reliever Trevor Richards.
Rasmussen is 7-4 with a 3.06 ERA in 20 starts this season for Tampa Bay.
There have been 23 perfect games in MLB history. Felix Hernandez was the most recent pitcher to toss a perfecto, leading the Seattle Mariners to a 1-0 win over the Rays in August 2012.