AN UNDERRATED ’05 MEMORY: WIDGE TO THE RESCUE!

Aside from the obvious postseason moments, my favorite White Sox memory of 2005 occurred on a Sunday afternoon at U. S. Cellular Field by a little-known contributor acquired on this date in 2004.

On Aug. 21, 2005, the White Sox were in dire need of a victory. The team had lost seven in a row by a combined score of 42-20 and the seemingly insurmountable lead atop the American League Central was evaporating.

The fact that the White Sox were facing Randy Johnson and the Yankees on that 78-degree day compounded the feeling of doom.

The White Sox lineup card didn’t provide much solace either.

While the Yankees fielded a team that included Derek Jeter, Gary Sheffield, Alex Rodriguez, Hideki Matsui, Bernie Williams and Tino Martinez, Ozzie Guillen’s lineup card had Pablo Ozuna at third, Chris Widger behind the plate, Brian Anderson in left and Geoff Blum at first.

No problem.

The Sox clubbed four home runs off the “Big Unit” in the fourth inning en route to a rousing 6-2 win.

When Widger, signed on this date 12 years ago, capped the outburst with a three-run bomb off a pitch at his eyes, I knew 2005 was not going to be a typical Sox season.

Two months and five days later, I was proven right.

And I still can’t believe it.

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