Time creaked to a stop Wednesday afternoon in the NFL Media newsroom -- for baseball.
This doesn't happen often, but neither does a perfect game.
When Seattle Mariners starting pitcher Felix Hernandez accomplished the feat in a 1-0 victory over the Tampa Bay Rays, it marked just the 23rd perfect game in Major League Baseball history.
The question bubbled up as Hernandez was mauled by teammates: Is there an NFL equivalent to the rare ebb and flow of baseball's perfect game?
Not a chance. Totally different worlds.
Football draws closest to baseball's statistical wonderland when a quarterback triggers a perfect passer rating of 158.3. It requires at least 20 attempts in a game, but it's a man-made rating system with which many find fault. Incompletions can slip in, mistakes can be made -- it's not really a symbol of perfection.
Oddly enough, these are equally rare events (although not really, because baseball has been around since the dawn of man): Still, 23 perfect games; 23 instances of a perfect passer rating. Pitchers and quarterbacks are a combined 46-0 in these contests.
After Hernandez locked it down, Dan Hanzus told a story of being at David Cone's perfect game for the New York Yankees in 1999. Most of you remember where you were when the last no-hitter or perfecto went down.
So, where were you the last time a quarterback dialed up the old 158.3? Be honest.
It's not the same. Football players don't even know a perfect passer rating is happening during a game, and neither do fans. A perfect pitcher, dipping into the later innings of his masterwork, feels the world closing in. Total fishbowl. Out-of-body focus is requisite.
Listen, we'll take football over baseball any day of the week, but here's one area where perfection has two different meanings.
To refresh your memory, here's the list of quarterbacks with NFL single-game perfect passer ratings: