CHRISTMAS EVE NOT ALWAYS A SILENT NIGHT FOR SOX

The North Pole isn’t the only place awash with activity on Christmas Eve.

Rumors have the “elves” in the White Sox personnel offices trying to hammer out a three-way deal with the Pittsburgh Pirates and New York Yankees with Jose Quintana as the centerpiece.

Reports are the Sox want this deal, which would net them more prized prospects, in place by Christmas. 

Christmas Eve is traditionally a slow time in baseball but that hadn’t always been the case for the White Sox.

Here’s a look at two recent transactions the Sox have executed on Christmas Eve:

1986, FINISHING OFF A BUM DEAL:  The six-player exchange with the New York Yankees which started the previous July 30 was completed when the White Sox received catcher Bill Lindsey on this date as the player to be named later in the exchange.

The controversial trade had Sox general manager Ken Harrelson sending popular slugger Ron Kittle, infielder Wayne Tolleson and promising catcher Joel Skinner to the Bronx Bombers for catcher Ron Hassey, prospect Carlos Martinez and, ultimately, Lindsey.

Lindsey played in just nine games for the Sox – all in 1987. He resurfaced briefly in 1995 when he was listed in the Sox “replacement players” media guide.

1990, WHEN IT RAINES, IT POURSIn a move to give their offense more speed and power, the White Sox acquired leadoff man extraordinaire Tim Raines from the Montreal Expos.

The Sox media guide of 1991 lists the date of this trade as Dec. 24, 1990 while retrosheet.org has it at Dec. 23, 1990.

The price to get Raines, who hopefully will be elected into the Hall of Fame next month, was steep, though.

The Sox had to surrender left fielder Ivan Calderon, who was coming off his most complete offensive season, and stellar setup man Barry Jones.

In helping the White Sox to a surprising 94 wins and a second place finish, Calderon hit .273 with 14 home runs, 74 RBIs, 32 steals and a team-record tying 44 doubles.

Jones went 11-4 with a 2.31 ERA as the lead-in to Bobby Thigpen, who logged a still-standing big league record 57 saves.

In Raines, the Sox got a lethal combination of speed and power at the top of the lineup as a counter to Oakland’s Rickey Henderson.

After shaking off a miserable start (which saw him shed his “Rock” nickname), Raines went on to have a decent 1991 and then fashioned more typical campaigns in 1992 and 1993.

Raines was spectacular in the 1993 American League Championship Series, hitting .444 with a record-tying (for a six game series) 12 hits as the Sox fell in six to Toronto.

The Sox also received pitcher Jeff Carter and minor leaguer Mario Brito in the deal. 

Both Calderon and Jones would return to the Sox for end of the season cameos during the 1993 A.L. West Division championship season.

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