Video Gamer Wins $1 Million for Throwing a Virtual Perfect Game
The Mobile, Ala., 24-year-old has won 2K Sports' much-hyped $1 million prize for being the first person to throw a perfect game on MLB 2K10. That someone actually pulled off the feat isn't particularly surprising given the video game skills of many Americans. What is absolutely gobsmacking, however, is that McGilberry did it less than 24 hours after the game was released and that he did it using Braves starter Kenshin Kawakami.
We'll take the last part first. McGilberry bought the game at midnight on the day it came out and then lost an argument with his wife about skipping work to try and throw a perfecto. He got home from work, fired up the XBox and camcorder needed to verify the effort and got to work. His first five tries ended in failure, according to Darren Rovell of CNBC, but his sixth try went the distance. All told, it was 90 minutes of effort for a pretty lucrative prize. He submitted the tape and began a long waiting process.
2K Sports kept the contest open for two more months, either because it took a while to verify the perfect game or so they could sell more games with the prospect of winning the big prize. We'll let your level of cynicism decide that one but don't get too angry at the corporate guys. They're out a cool million on this one because no insurance company would back the contest. Since no one had ever tried a stunt like this before, there was no way to generate odds of how likely it was to happen.
Now, back to the really shocking part of the story: Kenshin Kawakami. It would surprise most people to hear that Kawakami, 0-5 with a 5.47 ERA for Atlanta this year, went a full inning without giving up a hit or a walk. The fact that McGilberry could steer him all the way to a perfect game says a lot about his skills as a gamer.
The only other thing we'd like to know is what compelled him to use Kawakami in the first place.