As any real baseball fan knows, there is a very small group of accomplishments that are held above all others as the rarest in the game, and therefore worthy of being remembered forever.
A no-hitter is rare, indeed, but not in that group. Neither is hitting for the cycle. On the other hand, there's the unassisted triple play. Just 15 players have turned one in in the entire history of the game. And hitting four home runs in a single game. That's been done by just 15 sluggers.
Then there's the perfect game. This extreme rarity, in which a pitcher retired each and every one of the 27 batters he faced, is perhaps baseball's ultimate single-game achievement. Just 18 have done it since 1880, and while that number may be higher than the home run or triple play feat above, the perfecto is still about as good as it gets.
Now, the makers of the video game Major League Baseball 2K10 are acknowledging that being perfect in their digital ballgame is also worthy of being remembered. But they're not just putting a notation in the record books. The folks at 2K Sports are ponying up a truckload of cash for the first person to throw a perfect game in MLB 2K10. A million dollars, to be precise, as long as it happens between March 2 and May 1 of this year.
It's not clear exactly how rare such a feat is in the game, and perhaps that isn't exactly the point. This is, of course, a gimmick, a way for 2K Sports to generate a little buzz for their game and get its players excited about their prospects for imminent wealth.
Whether this promotion will generate additional sales for the game is unclear to me. I would tend to doubt it. Then again, there may well be a group of joystick jockeys out there who think they can do anything in a video game given the proper incentive. And if a million bucks isn't motivation enough for such a person to plop down $60 for a video game, I don't know what would be.