Today in White Sox History: October 16

Four of a kind: Paul Konerko‘s unassisted out at first clinched a fourth straight win, fourth straight complete game, and World Series berth in 2005. (@RonVesely)


1952 — The White Sox sent infielder Willie Miranda to the St. Louis Browns in a trade. So what? Well consider this: It marked the third time in four months that Miranda was dealt between the two clubs! Miranda was traded to the Browns on June 15, 13 days later the Sox reacquired him and finally on this date they sent him back.


2005 — The White Sox won their sixth league championship, beating the Angels, 6-3. Jose Contreras fired the fourth consecutive complete game by the staff. The four consecutive postseason complete games hadn’t been seen in major league baseball since the 1956 New York Yankees pulled it off. After losing the first game of the ALCS, the Sox swept away Los Angeles.

Paul Konerko was named the ALCS MVP. The city of Chicago, especially on the South Side and in the South suburbs, went wild as the “nuclear scenario” happened for Cub fans … the Sox were in the World Series!

Today in White Sox History: October 12

The dropped third strike heard ’round the world: A.J. Pierzynski remains forever a folk hero on the South Side for this ALCS Game 2 stunt. (YouTube)


1966 — Another one of White Sox GM Ed Short’s best moves came on this day: He sent two-time All-Star pitcher Juan Pizarro, nursing a bad arm, to the Pittsburgh Pirates for minor league pitcher Wilbur Wood. Wood would blossom in Chicago thanks to his knuckleball, first as a record-setting relief pitcher, then as a four-time 20-game winner (1971-74). Wood would also make three All-Star teams.


2005 — In one of the strangest endings to a postseason game in history, the White Sox beat the Angels 2-1, in Game 2 of the ALCS. With the game tied in the ninth inning, catcher A.J. Pierzynski ran to first on a third strike that possibly bounced in the dirt (replays were definitely unclear, seeming to indicate that Angels catcher Josh Paul both caught the ball on the fly and held on to it). Paul, a former Sox player, heard home plate umpire call Pierzynski out on strikes (also captured on camera) and rolled the ball back to the mound, not bothering to throw to first base, as required by the rules for a dropped third strike.

After much delay and arguing by Angels manager Mike Scioscia, pinch-runner Pablo Ozuna stole second and Joe Credes double brought home the game-winner.

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: October 3

Organ, grounded: Nancy Faust played her last for the White Sox in 2010. (Dan Kraemer/@DanCBS2)

1906 — The White Sox clinched the pennant while waiting out a rain delay in St. Louis against the Browns. When the game was finally played, the Sox shut out St. Louis, 4-0, behind Frank Owen. The Sox would end 1906 at 93-58-3, beating the New York Highlanders (Yankees) by three games for the pennant.


1993 — The Sox rung down the curtain at old Municipal Stadium in Cleveland by beating the Indians, 4-0. Jason Bere got the last win in the cavernous stadium, which was replaced in 1994 by Jacobs Field.


2005 — As baseball was wrapping up the regular season, Paul Konerko appeared on the cover of Sports Illustrated sliding into second base in a game against Cleveland. The cover headine read: Playoff Scramble. Who’s Out, Who’s In? White Sox vs. Indians. Yankees vs. Red Sox. 4 teams, 3 Spots

2010 — Beloved by Sox fans for generations as the organist at White Sox ballparks, Nancy Faust played her last game as the team beat Cleveland, 6-5. Nancy took over as Sox organist in 1970 and in the ensuing 40 years rarely missed a game.

Her lasting contribution was unearthing a little known rock song in 1977 that turned into an anthem used by numerous pro and college teams. Nancy started playing Steam’s, “Na Na Hey Hey (Kiss Him Goodbye)” when an opposing pitcher was being removed from the game. It caught on like wildfire with Sox fans, and became one of the things identified with the franchise.

Today in White Sox History: September 29

Blood brothers: Ozzie Guillén and Ken Williams celebrate the division title.


Sept. 29, 1908 — White Sox starting pitcher Ed Walsh fired two complete games in a doubleheader against the Boston Red Sox. He won both by the scores of 5-1 and 2-0. In 1908, Walsh would have arguably the greatest pitching year in the history of the game, winning 40 times with an ERA of 1.42.


Sept. 29, 1917 — With a 3-1 win in the second game of a doubleheader in New York, the White Sox won their 100th game of the season. That remains the most wins in a single season in franchise history. Eddie Cicotte picked up the win.


Sept. 29, 1920 — With the White Sox leading the American League late in the season, pitcher Eddie Cicotte and outfielder Joe Jackson confessed (without an attorney present) that they helped throw the 1919 World Series. Charles Comiskey suspended eight players; the Sox collapsed down the stretch and blew the pennant, losing out to Cleveland by two games.


Sept. 29, 1921 — One of the “clean” White Sox, pitcher Dickie Kerr, was honored with a day at Comiskey Park. Kerr then went out and fired one of his best games, blanking Cleveland on six hits to win, 5-0.

Sept. 29, 1967 — The Sox still had a chance for the pennant, but lost 1-0 to the Senators. The only run was set up when first baseman Tommy McCraw wasn’t able to catch a pop up off the bat of Washington’s Fred Valentine in the first inning. NBC-TV had erected a barrier for their field level cameras in case the World Series came to Comiskey Park, and Valentine’s pop fell into that enclosed area near the visitor’s dugout. Valentine then singled to drive in the only run.

The 1967 season marked the 17th straight year that the Sox finished better than .500.


Sept. 29, 1990 — The last night game ever played at the original Comiskey Park was won by the White Sox, 4-2. Frank Thomas slapped a two-run single up the middle off Seattle Mariners starter Matt Young to drive in the go-ahead runs.

Sept. 29, 2005 — The White Sox beat the Tigers in Detroit, 4-2, clinching the Central Division title. The Sox won 99 regular season games and led the division every day of the season (and remain one of the few teams in baseball history to go wire-to-wire). The Sox then blitzed through the postseason, going 11-1 on their way to the world championship. They swept Houston in four games to get it.


Sept. 29, 2008 — White Sox shortstop Alexei Ramírez set a major league rookie record when he hit his fourth grand slam of the season in an 8-2 win over the Tigers. The home run would also tie the franchise record for most grand slams in a season. Albert Belle originally set that mark in 1997.