White Sox pitcher Phil Humber fits the definition of a journeyman. All you have to do to realize that is take a look at the winding road he's traveled through professional baseball:
June 5, 2001: Drafted by the New York Yankees in the 29th round of the 2001 amateur draft, but did not sign.
June 7, 2004: Drafted by the New York Mets in the 1st round (3rd pick) of the 2004 amateur draft. Player signed January 11, 2005.
February 2, 2008: Traded by the New York Mets with Deolis Guerra (minors), Carlos Gomez and Kevin Mulvey to the Minnesota Twins for Johan Santana.
October 6, 2009: Granted Free Agency.
December 11, 2009: Signed as a Free Agent with the Kansas City Royals.
December 17, 2010: Selected off waivers by the Oakland Athletics from the Kansas City Royals.
January 18, 2011: Selected off waivers by the Chicago White Sox from the Oakland Athletics.
At age 29, Humber is already on his fifth organization. During his pro career, he's been down just about every path conceivable. He's been the first-round draft pick. He's been the top prospect. He's also been the guy who had Tommy John surgery. He's been the bust. He's been the guy who was given up on and traded. He's been the guy who was released (twice). He's been the guy who made the team in spring training, only to get sent back down. He's also been the guy who made the team in spring training and surprised everyone with a good season. He's been the guy who took a line drive off his face (twice) and lived to tell about it.
And, now, after Saturday, he's one of just 21 pitchers in MLB history to throw a perfect game, a 4-0 masterpiece against the Seattle Mariners. Here's the list that Humber just joined.
Days like Saturday are really what makes baseball special. You don't have to be a future Hall of Famer to achieve immortality. Each game is its own narrative, and on any given day, even a pitcher with a grand total of 12 career MLB wins can capture the country's imagination.
Phil Humber may be the fifth starter on a team nobody expects to contend, but for White Sox fans, his name will never be forgotten.