CLEVELAND, Ohio (CNN) – As commander-in-chief, President Obama gets regular urgent briefings on ongoing situations, from the continuing debate over health care reform to vital intelligence matters. Here on Thursday, he was getting staff updates on another developing story: the perfect game pitched by a hurler for his beloved Chicago White Sox.
White House spokesman Robert Gibbs said that as the president was leaving Shaker Heights High School after a town hall meeting, he was quickly briefed on the fact that pitcher Mark Buehrle was carrying a perfect game into the ninth and final inning of a game back in Obama's hometown of Chicago.
Gibbs said that as the president's motorcade headed to the airport for a flight to Chicago, where he will be attending fundraisers Thursday night before a late return to the White House, he received an e-mail update from an aide that the perfect game had been completed.
"As a fan, it's extraordinary," Obama told Gibbs before Air Force One took off from Chicago, according to the press secretary. "When you're a White Sox fan - and I know the guy - it makes it even more fun."
Obama called Buehrle to congratulate him, pulling the pitcher out of a news conference, according to Gibbs, and told the pitcher it was "an extraordinary achievement."
The president also joked that perhaps his decision to sport a White Sox jacket as he tossed out the first pitch at baseball's All-Star game earlier this month had brought Buehrle a little bit of luck.