White Sox share Buehrle's excitement
Teammates, skipper cheer veteran's achievement
CHICAGO -- When Josh Fields wrapped his mitt around the ball to record the final out of Mark Buehrle's perfect game against the Rays on Thursday, he headed straight for the pitcher's mound.
"It was awesome," said Fields. "I was thinking about catching the last out since the seventh inning and tackling him. I think that was a very nerve-wracking situation, but when you think about something else, it made the nerves go away."
The least nervous among them was probably Buehrle, who once again refused to acknowledge the unwritten rules of a no-hitter. Even during his first no-hitter on April 18, 2007, Buehrle was gabbing with teammates in the dugout, and the veteran lefty did so once again Thursday.
Tradition holds no player in the dugout is supposed to make mention of a pitcher's no-hitter.
"Buehrle talks about it, which is kind of funny," rookie third baseman Gordon Beckham said. "He came up to me in the seventh and was just like, 'You think I'm gonna do it?' I just kind of looked down because I didn't want to say anything to jinx him. And he went out there and he did it."
Nobody was happier for Buehrle than White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen, who has now been the skipper for both of Buehrle's no-hitters.
"It's amazing," Guillen said. "We're excited. In the coach's room, everybody was in tears. One thing about it, it couldn't happen to a better guy -- franchise kid, organization man and a great guy to have around. You guys know how good it is to be around that kid every day."
A.J. Pierzynski has been catching Buehrle for five years, including his first no-hitter, but Pierzynski was on the bench Thursday and could only watch and cheer for his friend.
"Just to witness it, see it and be a part of it is good enough," Pierzynski said. "I'm happy for [backup catcher Ramon Castro], and I'm obviously happy for Mark and the organization.
"The perfect game is the story, but the fact that we won the game, won the series against Tampa and go into Detroit with some momentum -- hopefully that will carry into this weekend."
The reaction from his teammates might have paled, though, to the reaction Buehrle got from his friends and family, which included a congratulatory phone call from President Barack Obama.
"I just looked at my phone and I had 54 text messages," Buehrle said. "I didn't know I had 54 friends. I had eight phone calls, too. It'll be a fun plane ride trying to look at them all."
David Just is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.