Hours before his first start since his perfect game, San Francisco Giants right-hander Matt Cain stood on the grass at Angels Stadium and read the Top 10 Things I Want To Achieve Now That I’ve Thrown A Perfect Game — for David Letterman’s late-night show.
No. 4: “Pitch an inning without my pants.”
Here’s another that wasn’t on the list: Win my next start.
It happened, but much less smoothly than the perfect game.
Cain lasted only five innings in a 5-3 victory over the Los Angeles Angels, and he was nowhere near as sharp.
Then again, who is?
Johnny Vander Meer was the only pitcher in history with consecutive no-hitters — that must be the toughest record to break — and Cain’s bid for more hitless ball ended in a hurry. Mike Trout singled to open the bottom of the first.
The Angels had 11 baserunners in Cain’s five innings, which took him 100 pitches, and he admitted he might have been overly amped with all the attention coming his way in the wake of the perfecto.
On Monday, he received a Samurai sword from Mizuno and won NL Player of the Week honors.
By the way, here’s his Top 10 list on what he’d do after the perfecto:
10. Throw a perfect game with my other arm
9. Convert the mound into an organic vegetable garden
8. Discover a cure for groin pulls
7. Open my dream salon
6. Catch a line drive with my mouth
5. Fix the economy ... Just kidding. That’s impossible
4. Pitch an inning without my pants
3. Appear on Jay Leno’s Ten at Ten
2. Throw a hole in one
1. Win the contest to replace Regis Philbin