2K Sports offered $1 million to the first person to throw a perfect game on their baseball video game MLB 2K11 and a music teacher from Louisina named Brian Kingrey has claimed the prize.
Kingrey smartly chose Phillies ace and cover boy Roy Halladay as his pitcher and picked the Astros as his weak-hitting opponent, setting Houston down in order after studying the game and working on his strategy for hours at a time.
Kingrey shared his process with Chris Morris of Yahoo! Games:
I’m not really into sports games, but I am into competitive games, so when I heard about this competition, I couldn’t leave it alone. Two weeks before the competition started, my wife forced me to go get the game. She was like “I don’t know why you’re not doing this.”
Roy Halladay has the most control on his pitch in the game. And he has this really mean slider that’s amazing against right-handers. The Astros only have two lefties in their lineup. I’d throw it low and to the right and then they would swing and miss.
Not only does Kingrey have a wife who “forced” him to spend more time playing video games, he has more awareness of the importance of platoon splits than a few big-league managers. And the most amazing thing? Morris writes that Kingrey “threw a perfect game within two hours after just three tries.”
The Phillies and Red Sox appear intent on pursuing free agent first baseman Carlos Santana, MLB Network’s Jon Morosi reports. Santana rejected a one-year, $17.4 million qualifying offer from the Indians on Thursday and is expected to draw widespread interest on the market this winter. The Mets, Mariners, Angels and Indians could make a play for the infielder, though no serious offers have been made this early in the offseason.
Santana, 31, is coming off of a seven-year track with the Indians. He batted .259/.363/.455 with 23 home runs and 3.0 fWAR last season, making 2017 the fourth-most valuable year of his career to date. Although he was primarily stationed at first base over the last year, he could step back into a hybrid first base/DH role with the Red Sox, who are hurting for infield depth with Hanley Ramirez still working his way back from shoulder surgery.
As for Santana’s other suitors, the Mariners are far less likely to pursue a deal after trading for Ryon Healy last Wednesday. Neither the Mets nor the Phillies have a DH spot to offer the veteran infielder, and the Phillies’ Rhys Hoskins appears to be blocking the way at first base. Then again, Santana may not find a more enticing offer outside of Cleveland, where Edwin Encarnacion might otherwise be the club’s best option at first base. During the GM meetings, Indians’ GM Mike Chernoff said he “love to have both [Santana and Jay Bruce] back” in 2018, but hasn’t backed up that love with any contract talks just yet.