Updated Aug 18, 2012 - 9:35 am
Felix Hernandez looks back at perfection and wonders if he can do more
By Shannon Drayer
The smile was almost as big as it was on Wednesday. Felix Hernandez is still thrilled with what he did that afternoon. The only difference now perhaps is that he can take a deep breath.
Less than 48 hours after throwing the 23rd perfect game in MLB history Felix was back to work at Safeco Field. It still wasn't quite a normal day as he had to take more pictures under the scoreboard and handle a few interview requests. This morning along with Michael Saunders he made a pre-scheduled trip to Children's Hospital to visit some of the kids there. That was one of the more "normal" moments he has had since the perfect game as the kids didn't quite understand what he had done two days before. Felix enjoys these visits and the kids clearly enjoy spending time with him as well.
Before Friday's game I sat down with Felix in the dugout to take a look back at the past 48 hours. Here is the transcript of the "Beyond the Baselines" interview that runs today and tomorrow.
What was the first thing you did when you got back to the clubhouse?
Call my wife, that was the first thing. I sat down, send the text and call. She was in Venezuela, she could watch only the last two innings because that is when they started televising it in the 7th inning and I heard people were calling her, telling her stuff, and she was, "Don't talk to me, I'm not going to watch anything! Don't tell me, don't talk to me!" She went to the room and stayed there the whole game."
Who else did you talk to?
I talked to my mom and dad, my brother, it was very special.
How many messages, Tweets, texts did you have?
That's the first time I see that on my phone. I had about 100 and some text, I had 3000 (might have been 30,000) followers more after that day, it was unbelievable. Unbelievable.
What was the message meant the most to you?
I think every message meant a lot. People from everywhere, you know? And I think I deserve it.
Who was the biggest that you got a message from?
Mark Buehrle, it surprised me. It said congrats buddy. Welcome to the club.
Take me back to the bullpen that day. People were saying you had special stuff.
I feel pretty good, I can't lie. In the bullpen, even Carl tell me, "That's good stuff right there buddy." But you know what? As soon as I come out for that game I know I have something going on because all of the pitches were working and I could throw any pitch in any count and I did it.
Was there a time in the game where you realized what you were doing and perhaps focused in even more?
It was always in my mind, the whole game. If you are going to do it, you have got to do it here.
Could you hear the crowd?
Oh yeah. Ooohhh yeah. I came out of the dugout and they started yelling "Let's go Felix!" That was something good right there.
Did you here them on the mound too?
I like when they start yelling but on it, I was so focused. I was in my game.
How strange was it in the dugout?
It was strange. Nobody would talk to me. Nobody would say nothing to me. I was walking to get my water and people started moving to the other side, it was crazy. Those guys were unbelievable too.
You have always said this was something you always wanted. Were you thinking the no-hitter or were you thinking the perfect game?
I was thinking of something good. I was thinking of the perfect game, yeah, because I think that is every pitcher's dream and it came true.
What will you tell people about that day?
I don't think I have any words to explain that. That's special.
What were you thinking when you went to sleep that night?
I wasn't even thinking of that, for real. I was thinking, I did it. I did it, yes!
You have always refused to say what your best game is. Is that because you haven't had it or...
Probably, Probably yes. But I think that afternoon was one of my best games.
There you say it again, you say one of my best...
I think I can do more than that. I don't know, we'll see. It's one of the best, it might be the best.
Have you ever talked to anyone about wanting to throw a perfect game?
My wife, always talking about that. When Humber throw the perfect game she said baby you got to get one for real, and I was like, yeah I need to, and just do it here at Safeco Field in front of these fans, that will make it even more special.
Couldn't have been a better day. Can you believe, blue skies, yellow shirts, good crowd?
Un-be-lievable, unbelievable. Still can't...it's awesome. It's awesome.
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