One of the modern day mound masters, left-hander Mark Buehrle broke into the majors with the Chicago White Sox in 2000. After a 4-1 record as a rookie he has strung together a streak of five consecutive years of over 200 innings, 2001-2006, including 245.1 innings in 2004. Included in that string are 19 complete games with 6 shutouts. His win loss records in those seasons are outstanding – 16-8, 19-12, 14-14, 16-10 and 16-8 for the 2005 World Champion Chicago White Sox.
In 1998 after starring at Jefferson Missouri Junior College Buehrle was drafted by the Chi-Sox in the 38th round. He worked the mound in lower-minors and then started the 2000 season for Birmingham, going 8-4, 2.28 ERA, before finishing up the year at 4-1, 4.21 ERA in Chicago for the parent team. He hasn’t posted a 20-win season, not yet anyway, However, he hung-up a 19-12, 3.58 earned run average in 2002 and was picked for that season All Star Game. Buehrie throws a high-volume fastball and slips in a mean back-door cutter.
On April 19 2007 Mark Buehrle pitched a no-hitter in Chicago against the Texas Rangers. The 28-year old registered 66 strikes in his 105-pitch count and only walked one Rangers batter, Sammy Sosa, who he promptly picked off first base.
White Sox third baseman, Joe Crede made a nice scoop on a slow roller by Gerald Laird on the last play of the game. Working super fast between pitches, it was apparent all night that the Texas batters where having trouble adjusting to the inside pitches by Mark Buehrle. He mixed his fastball with sliders, went inside and outside, but mostly threw fastball over for strikes. The White Sox won 6-0 in a chilly 41 degrees night before 25,390 fans. The Sox offense was led by Jermaine Dye who lined a grand slam homer in the fifth inning off of Texas starter Kevin Millwood. The no-hitter was the first thrown at home for Sox pitchers since Joel Horlen pitched a 6-0 no-hitter vs. Detroit on September 10 1967. Before that Big Bob Keegan pitched one at home against Washington, winning 6-0 on August 20 1957.
After the games Mark Buehrle said, ‘I probably was more nervous coming out of the eight inning and going back to the ninth with the crowd going crazy.’ Texas slugger Sammy Sosa declared, "He was in command."
One of the top starting pitchers in the majors - Uniform # 56. Mark Buehrle was the White Sox’s opening day starter three straight years, 2002-04, and on April 4 2005, Buehrle started the White Sox season opener at home and pitched a brilliant 2-hitter, no-runs thru 8 innings as the Sox topped Cleveland 1-0. As good as Buehrle pitched Indians starter Jake Westbrook matched him pitch-for-pitch. Throwing mainly sinker balls Westbrook pitched a complete game, allowed 4-hits, walked one and oneearned runs. The Sox run scored on a double by Paul Konerko, a fly out moved him to 3rd, Aaron Rowand hit a grounder to Cleveland new shortstop Jhonny Peralta who dropped the ball, Konerko scoring the game's only run. One out and a single followed, then a DP.
We @ baseballhistorian.com reminisce that Mark Buehrle is a lot like the early years of Hall of Famers Bob Lemon, Warren Spahn and Robin Roberts. He just goes out without complaining about dimensions, innings worked, and pitches smart, and gives it his total effort… and, wastes little time between pitches.