Today in White Sox History: January 14

Steal of a deal: Ed Short snagged four cornerstones of the mid-1960s White Sox, including Pete Ward, in a single trade in 1963.


1963
In a move that re-energized the franchise and led directly to back-to-back-to-back 90-or-more-win seasons in 1963, 1964 and 1965. White Sox GM Ed Short traded shortstop Luis Aparicio and outfielder Al Smith to the Baltimore Orioles for third baseman Pete Ward, outfielder Dave Nicholson, shortstop Ron Hansen and relief pitcher Hoyt Wilhelm.

Ward would be named co-Rookie of the Year (with teammate Gary Peters) and would supply power for the next few seasons. Nicholson, who struck out far too much, would have 22 home runs and 70 RBIs in 1963. Hansen would be one of the best defensive shortstops in the league and hit as many as 20 home runs in a season, at a time when shortstops simply didn’t do that. Wilhelm became the top relief pitcher of the 1960’s; in his six years with the Sox he’d win 41 games and save 98 others while producing some astonishingly low ERAs considering he threw the knuckleball.


2001
The White Sox acquired pitcher David Wells from Toronto, basically for pitcher Mike Sirotka. Over the coming weeks and months, Sirotka and the Blue Jays claimed the Sox knew that Sirotka had a bad arm and couldn’t pitch. Sox GM Ken Williams defended himself by saying that he told the Jays he thought Sirotka might be hurt and offered pitcher Jim Parque instead. Commissioner Bud Selig ruled in late March that the trade would stand. The whole episode became known as “Shouldergate.”

 

 

Today in White Sox History: December 13

Not so bad: Ritchie was a monumental failure for the White Sox, but he was hurt — and the guys swapped out didn’t really sting too badly. (Upper Deck)


1969
The White Sox dealt their star left hander Gary Peters to the Red Sox for Syd O’Brien and Billy Farmer. Farmer retired instead of reporting, so as compensation the Sox received Jerry “Wheat Germ Kid” Janeski. Peters would win 33 games in the next three seasons. Janeski won 10 in 1970 then was shipped to Washington for outfielder Rick Reichardt.

Peters had spent seven full and four partial seasons with the team, with a 20-win season, two All- Star teams and a Rookie of the Year award.


1982
The White Sox outbid 16 other teams to sign free agent pitcher Floyd Bannister to a five year, $4.5 million deal. Bannister had led the American League in strikeouts in 1981. In his five seasons on the South Side, Bannister won in double figures every year, with a high of 16 wins in both 1983 and 1987.

His signing angered Yankee owner George Steinbrenner ,who wasn’t used to losing out on talent that he wanted. Steinbrenner was quoted as saying that he regretted voting against Edward DeBartolo in his bid to buy the Sox franchise from Bill Veeck back in 1980 and leveled verbal blasts at owners Jerry Reinsdorf and Eddie Einhorn.


2001
In his quest to find reliable starting pitching, White Sox GM Ken Williams traded youngsters Kip Wells and Josh Fogg and veteran Sean Lowe to the Pirates for Todd Ritchie. Ritchie would suffer a shoulder injury and have a disastrous 2002 season, going 5-15 with an ERA of 6.06 (4.84 FIP)! Ritchie’s -1.7 bWAR is tied for the 15th-worst pitching season in White Sox history. What made the trade worse is that Wells put up bWARs of 2.8, 4.9 and 1.7 for Pittsburgh the first three seasons after the trade.

But in fairness to Williams, over 20 combined seasons in the majors Fogg, Lowe and Wells compiled just 6.9 bWAR, so none of the pitchers dealt led to chest-clutching regret.

A free agent, the Sox let him Ritchie go after his one terrible South Side season, and he was out of baseball two years later.


2004
On the third anniversary of his ill-fated Ritchie deal, Williams continued his remake of the club. He sent power-hitting but defensively-challenged outfielder Carlos Lee to Milwaukee as part of a four-player deal.

The outfielder coming from the Brewers to replace him (Scott Podsednik) energized the lineup, stole more than 40 bases twice, made an All-Star team and hit a dramatic walk-off home run in Game 2 of the 2005 World Series.

 

 

Today in White Sox History: October 7

El Duque with a dagger: In a postseason filled with memorable pitching performances, Hernandez’s in Game 3 of the 2005 ALDS was the best. (@WhiteSox)


2001 — White Sox All-Star outfielder Magglio Ordoñez became the first player in American League history to have a season with a .300 average, 40 doubles, 30 home runs, 100 RBIs and 25 stolen bases. He doubled against the Minnesota Twins for his 40th of the season — and the milestone.


2005 — At Fenway Park, the White Sox won their first postseason series of any kind since 1917 by beating Boston, 5-3, to sweep the ALDS in three games. Paul Konerko’s two-run home run gave the Sox some breathing room — and then pitcher Orlando Hernandez saved the game. Entering a bases-loaded, no-out, one-run lead situation in the sixth inning, El Duque got two pop outs and a strikeout. It was an amazing performance.

Today in White Sox History: September 11

Heavy hearts: Baseball fell to the background for awhile at the end of the 2001 season.


Sept. 11, 2001 — The White Sox were in New York near ground zero when the terrorist attack on the World Trade Center took place, getting a firsthand look at one of the darkest days in U.S. history. Major league baseball, in the wake of the national emergency, suspended all games for a week. The Sox returned to New York in early October to make up the three games with the Yankees.


Sept. 11, 2016 — In a 2-0 loss to the Kansas City Royals at U.S. Cellular Field, White Sox pitcher Chris Sale set the team record by recording 200 or more strikeouts for the fourth consecutive season. (Sale had set the team single season mark for strikeouts in 2015.) He would pitch eight innings in this game, striking out 12, only to lose as the Sox offense could not give him any support.