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MEMORABLE WHITE SOX-GIANTS GAMES

The program from the 1917 World Series between the Sox and Giants.

The White Sox and Giants don’t play often but when they do, the Sox usually win.

The White Sox entered this weekend’s interleague series in San Francisco 9-4 against the Giants. The .692 winning percentage is the Sox second-highest against SF is their second-highest against any foe. The Sox own a .700 winning percentage against the Reds.

The Sox haven’t left many wins in San Francisco, that’s for sure. The Sox .800 winning percentage in San Francisco is their highest as a visitor at any venue.

Regular-season games aren’t the only affairs these charter members of their respective leagues have played.

There have been World Series games, international exhibitions, and domestic exhibitions such as Cactus League tilts.

If fact, my favorite Sox-Giants game is a 1931 spring training game. The fact that it was the first night game between Major League teams was interesting enough but my journey to discover the details of the contest cemented it as my favorite (see below).

With all that in mind, here are some memorable games between the Sox and Giants:

*Feb. 1, 1914, Taking on the world: The White Sox and Giants played to a 3-3 tie in Cairo, Egypt as part of their world tour. The Sox and Giants would also visit Japan, Australia, Ceylon, France, Italy and England as part of the tour. The Sox would return to the United States the following March 6 having won 24 of the 44 exhibitions.

*Oct. 6, 1917, World Series Game 1: The White Sox opened the World Series with a 2-1 victory over the New York Giants before 32,000 at Comiskey Park. Ed Cicotte was masterful with his “shine ball” in going the distance. Cicotte scattered seven hits, walked one and fanned two. Fred McMullin gave the White Sox a 1-0 lead in the third when his double scored Shano Collins. In the next inning, Happy Felsch hit the first World Series home run by a Sox player to make it 2-0. The Giants scored a run in the fifth but Cicotte retired 12 of the final 13 batters he faced in giving the Sox the upperhand in the Series.

*Oct. 7, 1917 World Series Game 2: The White Sox took a 2-0 lead in the World Series with a 7-2 win over the New York Giants before 32,000 at Comiskey Park. Clarence “Pants” Rowland’s team broke open a 2-2 game with five runs in the fourth inning. Nemo Leibold gave the Sox the lead for good when his single scored Buck Weaver. Joe Jackson drove in two runs while Fred McMullin and Eddie Collins each drove in one in the outburst. Future Hall of Famer Red Faber cruised with the lead. Faber went the distance and did not allow a run after the second inning.

*Oct. 10, 1917, World Series Game 3: The New York Giants made a two-run fourth stand up in Game 3 of the World Series in a 2-0 win over the White Sox before 33,616 at the Polo Grounds. The victory enabled the Giants to pull to within 2-1 in the best-of-seven series. Ed Cicotte was the tough-luck loser, giving up just eight hits in eight innings. Buck Weaver and Eddie Collins combined for four of the Sox five hits.

*Oct. 11, 1917, World Series Game 4: The White Sox offensive woes continued in a 5-0 loss to the New York Giants in Game 4 of the World Series at the Polo Grounds. Ferdie Schupp limited the White Sox seven hits as John J. McGraw’s Giants evened the series 2-2. The Giants scored three runs off losing pitcher Red Faber and two more off Dave Danforth. When Chick Gandil flew out to center to end the game, it ran the Sox scoreless streak in the Series to 22 innings.

*Oct. 13, 1917, World Series Game 5: A return to Comiskey Park marked the return of the White Sox offense in the World Series. The White Sox scored six runs in their final two at bats in beating the New York Giants 8-5 to take a 3-2 lead in the World Series. The Giants took a 2-0 lead in the first but the Sox halved the deficit in the third on Happy Felsch’s RBI double which scored Eddie Collins with the team’s first run in 24 innings. The Sox fell behind 5-2 heading into the last of the seventh when their offense finally kicked into high gear. Chick Gandil pulled the Sox to within one with a two-run double. After an out, Gandil scored the tying run on a bad throw on a steal. In the eighth, Collins’ single to center plated Shano Collins with the go-ahead run. Red Faber, the fourth Sox pitcher of the game, got the victory with two perfect innings of relief. The contest is marred by nine errors, six by the White Sox.

*Oct. 15, 1917, World Series Game 6: WORLD CHAMPIONS! The White Sox defeated the Giants 4-2 in New York to claim the World Series title in six games. It was the White Sox second World Series championship and their first since the 1906 “Hitless Wonders” turned the trick against the Cubs. The White Sox broke a scoreless tie in Game 6 in the fourth thanks to a defensive lapse by Heinie Zimmerman. During a rundown, Zimmerman chased Eddie Collins – who reached on Zimmerman’s error — across the plate with the game’s first run. As the rundown was taking place, Joe Jackson took third and Happy Felsch checked into second. Gandil gave the Sox a 3-0 lead when he followed with a single over first. The Giants scored two in the fifth but could not dent starter Red Faber any further. Faber went the distance in notching his third win of the series. Each White Sox player received a winner’s share of $3,669 while the Giants each received $2,442.

*Oct. 26, 1924, Mass disappointment: The White Sox defeated the New York Giants 8-4 at Dublin Ireland’s Croke Park as part of their world tour. Only 20 people watched the game because it conflicted with church services.

This was part of the Sox and Giants second world tour (the first was in 1914). junket London, Dublin, Glasgow, Berlin, Paris and Rome.

The lights at Buffs Stadium in Houston.

*March 21, 1931, Let there be lights!: The White Sox defeated the New York Giants 11-6 in the first night game between two Major League teams at Buffs Stadium in Houston.

The White Sox won the historic clash in 10 innings “under the glare of 245-kilowatt lamps and the gaze of 2,500 onlookers,” according to the New York Times report of the game.

The Sox took control of the clash with five runs in the 10th. Bill Cissell’s RBI single, which scored Willie Kamm, gave the Sox the lead for good. Luke Appling capped the outburst with a two-run double.

The Trib headline from the March 1931 game between the Sox and Giants.

This game has been a research “white whale” of mine for at least a decade because of conflicting dates I stumbled upon in my research.

Here is my blog on the game and my quest to find out its details.

*March 8, 1998, Spring is the thing: Albert Belle hit a three-run homer and Greg Norton also went deep as the White Sox downed the Giants 6-1 in the first Cactus League game between the teams before 6,350 in Tucson, Ariz. Jim Parque started for the Sox and gave up one hit in four innings.

*March 31, 2002, Oracle debut: The White Sox closed out the exhibition season with a 5-2 win over the Giants in their Pac Bell Park (now Oracle) debut. Jon Garland allowed one run on three hits with five strikeouts and no walks in five innings while prospect Corwin Malone went the final three frames.

*June 10, 2003, Olivo, Jimenez power: Back-to-back home runs by Miguel Olivo and D’Angelo Jimenez in the seventh pushed the White Sox past San Francisco and Barry Bonds 5-2 before 23,837 at US Cellular Field in the first interleague clash between the franchises. Olivo’s homer, a two-run shot, gave the Sox the lead for good. In his US Cellular Field debut, Bonds homered in the fourth inning.

*May 16, 2008, Alexei … yes!: Alexei Ramirez’s two-run homer was all the White Sox needed in a 2-0 win in their interleague debut at San Francisco. Ramirez’s blast came in the seventh and made a winner out of Gavin Floyd, who got help from four relievers including Bobby Jenks, who notched his ninth save.

*May 17, 2008, Stellar relief: Octavio Dotel, Scott Linebrink and Bobby Jenks combined to hurl 2.1 innings of one-hit relief to nail down the White Sox 3-1 interleague win at San Francisco. Carlos Quentin, Paul Konerko and Orlando Cabrera each drove in a run in support of winning pitcher Mark Buehrle.

*May 18, 2008, The sweep in San Francisco: Orlando Cabrera homered twice and drove in three runs in the White Sox sweep-completing 13-8 interleague win at San Francisco. Nick Swisher’s three-run pinch-double in the eighth gave the Sox the lead for good.

*June 17, 2014, Good eye: Tyler Flowers bases loaded walk in the fourth fronted the White Sox for good in an 8-2 win over San Francisco in an interleague game before 25,278 at U.S. Cellular Field. Gordon Beckham’s homer off Matt Cain tied the game in the third as John Danks outpitched Cain for his sixth win.

*June 18, 2014, Sale-ing along: Chris Sale improved to 6-1 and Jose Abreu and Adam Dunn homered as the White Sox hung on for a 7-6 interleague win over the Giants before 20,059 at U.S. Cellular Field. Sale fanned seven in six innings as the Sox completed a two-game sweep of the future World Champion Giants.

*Aug. 12, 2014, Gordo!: Gordon Beckham’s two-out single scored Moises Sierra with the go-ahead run in the White Sox 3-2 win over the Giants in San Francisco. Chris Sale fanned 12 in eight shutout innings but the bullpen blew his lead in the ninth. It was Zach Putnam who wound up getting the win.

*Sept. 9, 2017, Start the cycle: Jose Abreu hit for the cycle as the White Sox and James Shields blitzed the Giants and Jeff Samardzija 13-1 before 17,688 at Guaranteed Rate Field. Abreu homered in the first, doubled in the third, singled in the seventh and tripled in the eighth in becoming the sixth Sox player to hit for the cycle (Ray Schalk, Jack Brohamer, Carlton Fisk, Chris Singleton, Jose Valentin).

My scoresheet from Jose Abreu’s cycle vs. the Giants.

The Sox launched four of their six homers off Samardzija (Abreu, Tim Anderson, Yolmer Sanchez and Avisail Garcia) in support of Shields, who gave up one run in seven innings for his third win. Yoan Moncada and Nicky Delmonico homered off Josh Osich for the Sox.

*Sept. 10, 2017, Abreu again!: A day after he hit for the cycle, Jose Abreu had three hits including two homers as the White Sox blasted the Giants 8-1 before 16,458 at Guaranteed Rate Field.

Abreu’s homer in the second off Madison Bumgarner was part of a five-run second, which made things easy on starter and winner Carson Fulmer. Abreu also homered in the eighth as the Sox took the series.

CY WHO? THE SOX GOT THE BEST OF THE ICONIC HURLER ON THIS DATE IN 1906, 1909

Cy Young lost to the Sox on this date in 1906 and 1909.

The legendary Cy Young was 27-22 in his career against our White Sox.

Baseballreference.com lists his career ERA vs. the “Good Guys” as 0.84 but that is incomplete because seasons 1905 and 1906 and 1908 to 1911 are incomplete.

The World Champion “Hitless Wonder” White Sox dominated the game’s greatest twirler, going 1-5 against him en route to the franchise’s first crown.

1906 is where this blog picks up steam.

The Sox beat Cy on this date in 1906 and 1909.

Here are the details:

*1906, Es DOOM CY: The White Sox scored two in the eighth on errors to best Cy Young and Boston 2-1. Nick Altrock, who gave up a run in the ninth, got the win and was backed by four double plays.

*1909, ED BESTS CY: Ed Walsh got the best of Cy Young in the White Sox 4-0 win over Cleveland in Chicago. Walsh fired a complete game one-hitter for the victory. The one-hitter was the fourth of the “Big Reel’s” Hall of Fame career.

By the way, Cy never pitched at Comiskey Park.

OFF SOX TOPIC: RIP MARQUETTE ICON GEORGE THOMPSON

Even when you are not a teacher and don’t think you are teaching, you are teaching.

I was saddened by the recent passing of Marquette basketball icon George Thompson.

While I was sad that we lost the first great Warrior and an iconic broadcaster, I am also mourning the death of a de facto “teacher.” His lessons: good preparation and good conversation.

George was the subject of my first basketball article for the Marquette Tribune. I wrote a “catching up” piece on the school’s all-time scoring leader for the 1984 MU Trib basketball supplement.

This was the first big-time interview I ever had, really so I prepared. I researched and talked to others about this great person.

The interview went great. George couldn’t have been nicer or more patient with a nervous probably stammering 19-year old. Whether he did it on purpose or not, George’s answers led to more questions which led to a better story.

I recall the interview and story going well, which gave me confidence that I needed as I transitioned from my dream of being a radio play-by-by man to the reality of being a reporter.

I only talked briefly with George after that but he was presence in our home as the Marquette radio analyst. He was great and loved Marquette. His “Today is a good day, Homer” as he emotionally signed off with Steve True after Marquette beat Kentucky to advance to the 1994 Sweet 16 is something I’ll never forget.

George is the second bust on Marquette’s Mt. Rushmore. It could be argued he should be first. I mean, if George doesn’t give Al McGuire the lift off that he needed, what would have Al become? The same could be argued for Michael and Phil.

I’ll post the article when I find it. My late parents kept everything!

MEMORABLE SOX-DODGERS GAMES

This is a YouTube screen shot of A.J. Pierzynski’s walkoff homer vs. the Dodgers on June 18, 2005.

With the Dodgers heading to Guaranteed Rate Field this week, here’s a look at the White Sox top games against the franchise that gave us Jackie Robinson, Sandy Koufax and Don Drysdale:

*Oct. 1, 1959: The White Sox defeated the Los Angeles Dodgers 11-0 in Game 1 of the World Series before 48,013 at Comiskey Park. The White Sox scored two in the first on RBIs by Ted Kluszewski and Sherm Lollar and then broke the game open with seven in the third. Kluszewski homered twice and drove in five while Early Wynn fired seven innings for the win in the Sox first World Series game in 40 years.

*Oct. 2, 1959: Despite taking a 2-0 lead in the first, the Sox dropped Game 2 of the World Series 4-3 to the Dodgers before 47,368 at Comiskey Park. The second of two Charlie Neal homers gave the Dodgers the lead for good in the seventh and enabled them to even the series at 1-1. The Dodgers first run of the series came in the fifth inning on Neal’s first home run which resulted in the infamous beer shower that Al Smith took up against the left field wall.

*Oct. 4, 1959: In the first World Series game in California, the Dodgers downed the White Sox 3-1 before a record crowd of 92,394 at the Los Angeles Coliseum. Future Sox announcer Don Drysdale got the win as the Dodgers took a 2-1 lead in the series.

*Oct. 5, 1959: The Dodgers got a run in the eighth to edge the White Sox 5-4 to take a 3-1 lead in the World Series before another record crowd — this one of 92,650 — at the Los Angeles Coliseum. Trailing 4-0, the Sox tied the game with a four-run seventh, which was capped by a two-run homer by Sherm Lollar. The Dodgers took the lead in the eighth on a homer by Gil Hodges to move a game within the crown.

*Oct. 6, 1959: The White Sox staved off elimination by downing the Dodgers 1-0 in Game 5 of the World Series before another record crowd — this one of 92,706 — at the Los Angeles Coliseum. The Sox lone run came in the fourth when Nellie Fox scored on a double play. Manager Al Lopez saved the day when he inserted Jim Rivera in right in the seventh with two on and two out and Rivera made a catch in right to end the threat.

*Oct. 8, 1959: The Dodgers finished off the World Series by defeating the White Sox 8-3 in Game 6 before 47,653 at Comiskey Park.The Dodgers led 8-0 after four before the Sox scored. Larry Sherry earned MVP honors by going 2-0 with two saves while amassing a 0.71 ERA in four appearances

*June 6, 2003: The White Sox lost to the Dodgers 2-1 in the first interleague clash between the franchises at Dodger Stadium. The game was the Sox first in Dodger Stadium since a 2-1 loss to the Angels, who played there in the mid-1960s, in the second game of a doubleheader on Sept. 15, 1965. The game was the first by the Sox against the Dodgers in Los Angeles since Game 5 of the 1959 World Series before 92,706 at the Los Angeles Coliseum

*June 7, 2003: Bartolo Colon went the distance and was supported by home runs from Joe Crede and Frank Thomas in the White Sox 4-1 over the Dodgers in Los Angeles. Colon gave up four hits and struck out five for his sixth win in the Sox first win at Dodger Stadium since an 8-1 win over the Angels in the first game of a doubleheader Sept. 15, 1965.

*June 17, 2005: Mark Buehrle tossed an eight-hitter in the White Sox 8-0 win over the Dodgers in the first regular season game in Chicago between the team before 28,870 at US Cellular Field. Buehrle struck out six and did not walk a batter while being backed by two double plays in improving to 8-1. He posted the second complete game shutout by a Sox pitcher in an interleague game and the first since Wilson Alvarez whitewashed the Cubs on June 18, 1997. Frank Thomas and Jermaine Dye both homered in the game that took just 2 hours and 24 minutes.

*June 18, 2005: The White Sox scored four in the ninth, with the last two coming on AJ Pierzynski’s walkoff homer, in a 5-3 win over the Dodgers before 36,067 at US Cellular Field. Earlier in the inning, Carl Everett and Aaron Rowand recorded RBIs to tie the game and set the stage for Pierzynski’s heroics, which sent the park into a frenzy to the tune of “Go Go White Sox.”

June 19, 2005: Aaron Rowand’s two-run single in the eighth was the difference in the White Sox 4-3 three-game series sweep-clinching victory over the Dodgers before 27,350 in a Sunday night affair at US Cellular Field.

*June 24, 2008: Mark Buehrle turned in eight strong innings for the victory in the Sox 2-1 interleague win over the Dodgers in Los Angeles. Buehrle gave up one run on six hits for his fifth win as the first place White Sox stopped a three-game skid. The Sox scored in each of the first two innings and pulled away with four in the eighth thanks to a two-run homer by Jermaine Dye. DeWayne Wise fell a homer shy of the cycle as the Sox banged out 11 hits.

*June 26, 2008: John Danks, Matt Thornton, Octavio Dotel, Scott Linebrink and Bobby Jenks combined on a five-hitter in a 2-0 interleague win over the Dodgers and Clayton Kershaw in Los Angeles. RBIs by Carlos Quentin and Alexei Ramirez gave Danks the lead. Danks fired six innings and then got help from as the Sox stayed tied for first place with Minnesota in the A.L. Central.

*May 21, 2011: Thanks to Alex Rios’ two-run homer, the White Sox KO’d Jon Garland in the fourth inning en route to a 9-2 win over the Dodgers before 25,519 at U.S. Cellular Field. Brent Lillibridge also homered in helping Mark Buehrle, who pitched seven innings, secure his fourth win.

*May 22, 2011: First-inning home runs from Alexei Ramirez and A.J. Pierzynski carried the White Sox to an 8-3 win over the Dodgers before 25,081 at U.S. Cellular Field. Ramirez finished 4-for-5 with two doubles, a home run and five RBI as the Sox took two of three from the Dodgers.

*June 16, 2012: Hector Santiago, Nate Jones, Jesse Crain and Addison Reed combined for four no-hit innings of shutout relief in the White Sox 5-4 win over the Dodgers in Los Angeles. The Sox took the lead in the fourth when Alexei Ramirez scored on a Alejandro De Aza fielder’s choice.

*June 3, 2014: Jose Abreu hit a two-run homer in the first in sending the White Sox to a 4-1 win over the Dodgers in Los Angeles. Hector Noesi gave up one run on five hits with six strikeouts for his first White Sox win.

*June 4, 2014: Leury Garcia’s first career home run and Adam Dunn’s 449th led the Sox to a  2-1 win over the Dodgers in Los Angeles. John Danks, who singled, pitched into the eighth inning and got relief help from Zach Putnam, Scott Downs and Ronald Belasario for his fourth win.

*July 18, 2017: A run in the first doomed the White Sox in a 1-0 loss to the Dodgers before 23,088 at Guaranteed Rate Field. Cody Bellinger’s one-out RBI single was all that Clayton Kershaw needed as he outdueled a game Miguel Gonzalez, who went five innings.

A GOOD MORNING FOR THE WHITE SOX, SPENCER

With the White Sox starting at 10:30 a.m. today, what better time to look back at the franchise’s most memorable morning game.

It really was a good morning for the White Sox and Jim Spencer on May 14, 1976.

Before the afternoon clock struck 12, Spencer tied the franchise record with eight RBIs in the Sox 18-2 win over Cleveland before 13,923 in a morning game at Comiskey Park.

The game started at 10:30 a.m. to promote McDonald’s new breakfast sandwich “the Egg McMuffin.”

Spencer was 3-for-3 with a two-run home run, a grand slam and a two-run single as the Sox banged out 17 hits.

The left-handed hitting first baseman did all that in four innings.

Spencer was given the rest of the morning off after the Sox grabbed an 11-0 lead.

“I’ve never had a half game like that in my life,” Spencer cracked.

Spencer joined Tommy McCraw (May 24, 1967) and Carl Reynolds (July 2, 1930) as Sox players with eight RBI games.

Spencer would duplicate the feat on July 2, 1977 and Robin Ventura had an eight-RBI game in September of 1995 while Yasmani Grandal had one in 2021.

Manager Bob Lemon pulled Spencer, robbing him of a shot at not only the club record but the MLB record as well.

“Next time he has eight, I’ll remind him,” Lemon said in the Tribune.

Spencer didn’t care in the least.

“It’s a long season,” he said. “It gave some other guys a chance to play. We might need ‘em someday.”

@SoxNerd follower @DJFrevs posted a great story that really speaks to the uniqueness of this game on my Twitter feed.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO WHITE SOX ICON JOE CREDE!

On his birthday, here’s a quick look at Joe Crede’s 2005 postseason for the World Series champion White Sox:

–Donated his glove used throughout the 2005 regular and postseason to the Baseball Hall of Fame

–Hit .289 (13-for-45) with three doubles, four homers and 11 RBI in 12 postseason games for the 2005 White Sox

–Hit go-ahead solo homer in the fourth inning of White Sox 5-3 win in Game 1 of the 2005 World Series

–Homered off Houston’s Roy Oswalt in White Sox five-run fifth in victorious Game 3 of the 2005 World Series

–Hit .294 with two homers and three RBI in the 2005 World Series

–Walkoff double lifted the Sox to a 2-1 series-tying win in Game 2 of the 2005 ALCS at U.S. Cellular Field

–Drove in the tying and winning runs in back-to-back innings of White Sox clinching Game 5 victory in the 2005 ALCS in Anaheim

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO WHITE SOX GREAT BILLY PIERCE

A few nuggets on legendary White Sox pitcher Billy Pierce, who was born on this date in 1927:

 *A member of the franchise’s All-20th Century team, the Detroit native went 186-152 with a 3.19 ERA and a club-record 1,796 strikeouts for the Sox from 1949 to 1961

*The seven-time All-Star became the first White Sox left-hander to lead the league in strikeouts when he whiffed 186 batters in 1953

*Among Pierce’s 186 White Sox wins were three one-hitters, 35 shutouts and 98 victories at Comiskey Park

*The first White Sox first pitcher to start an All-Star Game (1953), Pierce set an A.L. record with five strikeouts in the 1956 Mid-Summer Classic

*14-15 with a 3.62 ERA with 32 games (31 starts) for the 1959 American League champion White Sox

-*Made his fourth consecutive Opening Day start (no decision) in the White Sox 9-7 win at Detroit on April 10, 1959

*Unscored upon three appearances covering four innings with three strikeouts for the White Sox in the 1959 World Series

*FUN FACT: Pitched the first eight innings then started the ninth at first base and returned to the mound after recording one putout before getting the final two outs in defeating the Yankees on June 25, 1953

COUNTDOWN TO WHITE SOX OPENING DAY: 13 DAYS

13 days to Opening Day White Sox fans!

What better time to take a look at the players who wore No. 13 for the White Sox.

Here goes …

*BOB FOTHERGILL, 1932: Listed at 5-foo-10 and 230-pound, the outfielder was nicknamed “Fats” or “Fatty.”

*MARV GRISSOM, 1952: Wearing No. 13 on the 13th day of September 1952, Grissom struck out 13 Yankees in a 6-5 loss at Comiskey Park

*“BLUE MOON” ODOM, 1976: Combined no-hitter with Francisco Barrios was his last big league victory … On July 28, 1976 in Oakland, Odom fired five innings and gave up one unearned run with nine walks and three strikeouts before giving way to Barrios in the Sox 2-1 win

*HARRY CHAPPAS, 1979-1980: The 5-7 shortstop hit his only home run in 1979. … Prior to that, the last time a shorter Sox player homered was 5-6 Walt “No Neck” Williams in 1972

*JAMIE QUIRK, 1984: One of 16 players in White Sox history with at least one RBI and no hits

*OZZIE GUILLEN, 1985-1997: Only Sox player to make his big league debut wearing 13. … Ozzie was a big part of my “Sox and Friday The 13th” blog https://soxnerd.wordpress.com/2021/08/14/the-white-sox-and-friday-the-13th/

*ANTONIO OSUNA, 2002: Tied Keith Foulke for the White Sox lead with 11 saves in 2002. … Nickname was “El Canon.”

*WILLIE HARRIS, 2003: Surrendered the number and switched to No. 1 when Guillen returned to the Sox as manager in 2004.

COUNTDOWN TO WHITE SOX OPENING DAY: 21 DAYS

21 days to Opening Day White Sox fans!

Here are some nuggets on each player who wore 21 for the Sox:

*Zack Collins: Homered in his first big league at bat on June 21, 2019 at Texas

*Welington Castillo: Homered in his final big league at bat on Sept. 29, 2018

*Todd Frazier: Set Sox record for third basemen with 40 homers in 2016

*Tyler Flowers: Homer off James Shields accounted for the Sox only run in a 1-0 win over Kansas City on Opening Day

*Esteban Loaiza: Represented the Sox and was the American League’s starting pitcher in the 2003 All-Star Game at US Cellular Field

*Cal Eldred: The last pitcher from Iowa to play for the Sox (April 11, 2001) … His win on June 22, 2000 vs. Minnesota at Comiskey Park was the last by an Iowan for the Sox. … Eldred’s shutout of the Twins on June 28, 2000 was the last by a Sox pitcher from the Hawkeye State.

*Scott Sanderson: Gave up Dan Pasqua’s 484-foot homer at Comiskey Park on April 27, 1991 while pitching for the Yankees

*George Bell: Led the 1992 Sox with 25 homers

*Joey Cora: After wearing 21 in 1991, he switched to 28 in 1992 and wore it until 1994

*Matt Stark: Led the Sox Double-A Birmingham affiliate with 109 RBI in 1990. Frank Thomas was fourth with 72

*Robin Ventura: Switched to 23 after wearing 21 in 1989 and 1990

*Gary Redus: Hit the final walkoff grand slam at Comiskey Park on June 4, 1988

*Todd Cruz: Regular shortstop in 1980, Tony La Russa’s first full season as manager

*Rusty Torres: Eight homers in 1979 ranked fifth among Sox switch-hitters at the time

*Bart Johnson: Made his big league debut at age 19 in a start against the Seattle Pilots on Sept. 8, 1969 (loss)

*Lee Maye: Singled as a pinch-hitter off the Twins Jim Perry, in the midst of his Cy Young season, in his Sox debut on Sept. 13, 1970

*Dan Osinski: Only Western Illinois University product to pitch for the Sox

*Jim O’Toole: Only product of Chicago’s Leo High School to play in the Major Leagues

*Ray Herbert: Winning pitcher in the 1962 All-Star Game at Wrigley Field

*Gerry Staley: Led the American League with 15 saves for the 1959 pennant winning Sox

*Bob Powell: Appeared in two games for the Sox (one in 1955 and one in 1957) with no at bats. He did score a run as a pinch-runner in his final appearance on April 20, 1957.

*Stan Jok: Homered in his final start for the White Sox in the first game of a doubleheader split with Baltimore at Comiskey Park

*Sammy Esposito: Fenger High School and Indiana University product was 0-for-2 in the 1959 World Series

*Bud Stewart: At age 37, he was the oldest player to homer for the Sox in five years in 1954

*Eddie Smith: Lefty pitched the eighth and ninth innings in his All-Star debut in 1941 and earned the victory to become the first White Sox pitcher to win an All-Star Game. … Relieved Washington’s Sid Hudson with the National League leading 3-2 in the eighth. The NL extended the lead to 5-2 after scoring two off Smith in the eighth but the AL scored one in the eighth and four in the ninth to pull out a 7-5 win to give Smith the win. … Struck out Pete Reiser looking to start the eighth to become the first White Sox pitcher to record a strikeout in an All-Star Game. … Yielded a two-run homer to Arky Vaughn — first surrendered by a White Sox pitcher in an All-Star Gameafter striking out a looking Enos Slaughter. … After giving up the homer, he was charged with an error – the first by a White Sox player in an All-Star Game — when he failed to touch first base on Billy Herman’s grounder but retired Harry Danning to end the inning. … Worked a perfect top of the ninth, retiring Claude Passeau, Cookie Lavagetto and Terry Moore. …  Gave up two runs on two hits with two strikeouts (no walks) in two innings.

*Les Tietje: Winning pitcher in what could have been the hottest game in White Sox history. With temperatures in Chicago reaching a record 105, the right-hander turned in a complete game in the Sox 4-1 win over Washington at Comiskey Park on July 24, 1934.

COUNTDOWN TO WHITE SOX OPENING DAY: 23 DAYS (VENTURA!)

23 days to Opening Day White Sox fans!

23 random facts on Robin Ventura, one of the Sox most popular No. 23s:

1. His NCAA record 58-game hitting streak at Oklahoma State was halted by future Sox teammate Jack McDowell of Stanford

2. He was a member of the gold-medal winning 1988 Olympic baseball team

3. The Sox made him the 10th overall pick of the June 1988 draft. He was selected right after the Cubs took Ty Griffin

4. Ventura played just 129 minor league games at Birmingham (AA) before debuting for the Sox on Sept. 12, 1989

5. Ventura’s manager at Birmingham was Sox Gold Glove-winning outfielder Ken “The Bandi” Berry

6. Ventura walked in his first big league plate appearance off Baltimore’s Pete Harnisch on Sept. 12, 1989 in the Sox 11-1 win over the Orioles

7. Ventura collected his first big league hit later in that game with a single off Olympic teammate Ben McDonald. He plated Steve Lyons with that hit for his first RBI

8. Ventura made the first of his seven opening day starts at third base for the Sox in 1990. Only Willie Kamm made more Sox opening day starts at third than Ventura

9. Ventura hit his first career homer off Boston’s Roger Clemens on April 18, 1990 at Comiskey Park

10. Ventura suffered through an 0-for-41 skid in 1990

11. Despite that drought, Ventura finished seventh in the American League Rookie of the Year voting

12. Ventura is the career leader among Oklahoma State products with 1,885 hits

13. Ventura is the only Sox third baseman with a 100-RBI season (2)

14. Ventura set a Sox record for third basemen with 34 home runs in 1996 (since broken)

15. Ventura, Todd Frazier, Joe Crede and Bill Melton are the only Sox third basemen with a 30-homer season

16. Ventura is a six-time Gold Glove winner, which is second in Sox history to shortstop Luis Aparicio’s seven

17. Celebrated his 25th birthday with his first All-Star selection. … Replaced Wade Boggs in the bottom of the fourth and played the rest of the game at third base. … Went 2-for-2 with a run, a double and an RBI for the first multi-hit game by Sox player in an All-Star Game since Richie Zisk in 1977. … Doubled to first off Fred McGriff’s glove (against Bob Tewskbury) in the sixth to score Carlos Baerga. … Double was the first by a White Sox player in an All-Star Game since Zisk in 1977. … Became the fifth White Sox player to hit safely in his first All-Star plate appearance (Chico Carrasquel 1951, Sherm Lollar 1956, Ron Kittle 1983, Harold Baines 1985) and the sixth to hit safely in his first All-Star at bat (Jimmy Dykes 1933, Chico Carrasquel 1951, Sherm Lollar 1956, Ron Kittle 1983, Harold Baines 1985). … Singled to center off Doug Jones with no out in the eighth and was eventually forced at third. … Handled two chances (one putout, one assist) without an error.

18. Ventura was the first Sox third baseman to homer in the postseason (Game 5 1993 ALCS)

19. Ventura is the only Sox first-round pick to manage the team (full-time)

20. Ventura wore 21 in 1989 and 1990 before switching to 23

21. Ventura is tied with Paul Konerko for the all-time Sox lead with 10 grand slams

22. Ventura hit the first walkoff grand slam at New Comiskey Park/US Cellular Field/Guaranteed Rate Field on July 31, 1991 off Texas’ Rich Gossage

23. Ventura hit .158 (2-for-19) vs. Nolan Ryan

#108TOURNEY: THANK YOU FROM @SOXNERD!

I was not Maryland-Baltimore County of the #108Tourney.

A 16 seed in the White Sox Dave Region, I could not replicate the stunning upset the Retrievers pulled on No. 1 Virginia in the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament in 2018 in the annual Twitter event staged by Section 108 (@fromthe108).

WSCR host Leila Rahimi waxed me 65 percent to 35 percent with over 2,400 votes cast.

Thanks to everyone for voting for me and for the vocal support throughout the day. Frankly, I did better than I thought I would based on the excellent work Leila does and her well-deserved popularity.

It’s just an honor to be included in the brackets.

Thanks, too, to the 108 crew for putting so much time and effort into this tourney. Their quality input ingot this thing is why this it is so popular.

Really this event shows how unbelievably robust and enthusiastic White Sox Twitter is.

Good luck to everyone else the rest of the way.

Look for me voting and promoting the tourney through its conclusion.

COUNTDOWN TO WHITE SOX OPENING DAY: 24 DAYS

24 days to Opening Day White Sox fans!

Wearing No. 24, Yasmani Grandal has become the most prolific switch-hitting catcher in White Sox history.

Grandal set the single-season and career record in this category with his seventh homer while catching of 2020. He broke the single-season mark of six set by Dioner Navarro (2016) and Ben Davis (2004) and the career mark of the same number held by Navarro, Davis and Chad Kreuter.

Grandal has also hit more homers (31) than all of the other 13 Sox switch-hitting catchers combined.

Sox switch-hitting catchers Navarro (6), Davis (6), Kreuter (6), Adrian Nieto (2), Hector Gimenez (2), George Dickey (4) and Ken Silvestri (4) owned 30 homers prior to Grandal joining the Sox. The other five switch-hitting backstops — Hector Sanchez, Ed Fernandes, Raul Casanova, Dutch Fehring and Joe Sudgen — never homered for the Sox.

Grandal is fourth all-time among switch-hitting catchers with 172 homers behind Jorge Posada (275), Todd Hundley (202) and Jason Varitek (193).

OTD IN 1995: ‘MOCK SOX,’ ‘OIL CAN’ GET GOING

On this date in 1995, the “Mock” Sox took the field.

Twenty-seven years ago today, behind starter Dennis “Oil Can” Boyd’s three strong innings and Shawn Buchanan’s “walkoff” single, the White Sox – absent of any union players – defeated the Kansas City Royals 4-3 in their Grapefruit League opener before 1,504 at Ed Smith Stadium in Sarasota, Fla.

With the owners and players still at loggerheads, spring training games went ahead as scheduled with teams fielding non-union veterans and minor leaguers.

The 35-year old Boyd, who hadn’t pitched in a big league game since 1991, gave up one run on four hits while striking out two.

“I feel good to be in a game atmosphere,” said Boyd, who indicated he was not worried about being labeled a strikebreaker. “It’s what I live for. I showed I can still pitch and that’s what it’s all about.”

The Sox tied the game in the ninth and then won it in the 10th on Buchanan’s RBI single. Among those in the Sox lineup were Pete Rose Jr., former Cub Fernando Ramsey, ex-Angel Kent Anderson and one-time Sox players Chris Cron and Bill Lindsey.

TODAY IN ‘94: A SCRIMMAGE, BUT NO SNEAKERS, FOR SOX MINOR LEAGUER MICHAEL JORDAN

On this date in 1994, Michael Jordan went 0-for-3 with two strikeouts in an intrasquad game before 1,736 at the White Sox minor league camp in Sarasota, Fla.

Jordan who signed a minor league contract with the Sox on Feb. 7, batted sixth and played for coach Joe Nossek’s team.

In his first at bat, Jordan made good contact against James Baldwin but Warren Newson snared the liner in left with a backhanded grab.

In his final two at bats, Jordan was whiffed on offspeed pitches by Rodney Bolton and Scott Christman.

“It was my first game and I felt nervous out of element,” said Jordan,l. “Hopefully, I’ll get another chance and be a little more comfortable.”

REMEMBERING JULIO CRUZ, THE JUICE OF THE 1983 ‘WINNING UGLY’ WHITE SOX

Mixed emotions greeted the news that Julio Cruz had passed.

Of course, I couldn’t help but feel sadness for the death of the man. Cruz succumbed to cancer at the age of 67 on Tuesday.

I smiled, too because the way Cruz played made a lot of people happy, including myself and legions of White Sox fans.

The news brought me back to that wonderful night of September 17, 1983 at Comiskey Park.

The game was delayed 38 minutes at the outset and lowly Seattle was putting up a fight, but that didn’t dampen the spirits of the 45,646 on hand. After all, a win would clinch the Sox the West Division title and their first postseason berth since 1959.

It was only fitting that Cruz, the player who invigorated the team, scored the winning run on Harold Baines’ walkoff sacrifice fly.

Cruz gleefully crossing the plate with his fists raised in triumph with that historic run is one of the most iconic pictures in White Sox history.

Nicknamed “Juice,” he certainly juiced the White Sox after he was acquired from Seattle for Tony Bernazard on June 15.

The Sox were 28-32 when he arrived. The Sox finished the season 99-63. You do the math.

Sadly, the run Cruz scored was the peak for him with the Sox and the “Winning Ugly” Sox for that matter.

But if you need one moment to encapsulate who Julio Cruz was, look no further than that picture of him crossing the plate on Sept. 17, 1983.

Some @SoxNerd tidbits on Cruz:

*Cruz made his big league debut for the Mariners against the White Sox on July 4, 1977 in the Seattle Kingdome. That game was the first the Sox played indoors and Oscar Gamble’s homer was the franchise’s first under a roof.

*Cruz’s first hit was a single off Francisco Barrios. He was thrown out trying to steal by Jim Essian shortly thereafter.

*A switch-hitter, Cruz slashed .251/.311/.311 in 99 games for the 1983 “Winning Ugly” White Sox. He stole 24 bases in 30 attempts.

*Cruz’s first homer in Seattle was an in-the-park shot off the White Sox Ron Scheuler on June 26, 1978 at the Kingdome. … Cruz also homered off Sox pitchers Steve Trout and Jerry Koosman

*Cruz began the 1983 American League Championship Series vs. Baltimore 1-for-9. He did his best in that heartbreaking Game 4, going 3-for-3 with a walk and two steals in the 3-0 loss in 10 innings at Comiskey Park. … Cruz was the last player to steal a base in the postseason at Comiskey.

*Cruz’s only home run at Comiskey Park was a grand slam off Boston’s Bob Ojeda on April 28, 1984.

*Ed Sherman, a former Chicago Tribune White Sox beat writer, had poignant recollections of Cruz on his Facebook page. It’s public so check it out!

ON THIS DATE IN ‘88: THE WHITE SOX FETCH THE ‘ONE DOG’

On this date in 1988, the White Sox acquired promising outfielder Lance Johnson and pitcher Ricky Horton from the St. Louis Cardinals for pitcher Jose DeLeon.

It took some time but this deal executed by general manager Larry Himes turned out to be a good one.

After struggling in 1988 and not making the club in 1989, Johnson blossomed into a productive player.

The product of Triton Junior College hit .300 over his final 50 games in 1989 and was in the big leagues to stay. Johnson hit at least .274 in each year between 1990 and 1994 in becoming a fan favorite.

He led the A.L. in triples in each season between 1991 and 1994 while covering a lot of ground in center field. Johnson was an important part of the White Sox A.L. West Divison championship season of 1993.

In addition to hitting .311 with 14 triples, Johnson swiped 35 bases and went 4-for-9 with a homer and four RBIs in the Sox two victories in the A.L.C.S.

And, along the way, he earned the nickname “One Dog” from Hall-of-Fame announcer Hawk Harrelson because of his number and baserunning style. The tag has endured as one of the most popular monickers in team history.

DeLeon had some good years with the Cardinals but he was nowhere nearly as valuable to his team as Johnson was to the Sox.

DeLeon made his way back to the Sox for the 1993, 1994 and 1995 seasons as an effective reliever.

Horton appeared in 52 games for the 1988 Sox before being dealt to Los Angeles for Shawn Hillegas on Aug. 30, 1988.

JOE WEST AND THE WHITE SOX: A DEEP DIVE

A look at the White Sox and Joe West, the MLB leader with 5,460 games umpired, whose retirement was announced on Friday:

*THE BEGINNINGS: The first time West worked a White Sox game was July 15, 1999 at Busch Stadium in St. Louis. West was stationed at third base in the Cardinals 3-2 win in 13 innings.

“Country Joe’s” first Sox game behind the plate was a 7-0 loss at Cleveland on May 31, 2002. He called balls and strikes for Sox pitchers Gary Glover, Matt Ginter and Kelly Wunsch, who were throwing to Mark Johnson.

West’s first game at Guaranteed Rate Field came on June 30, 2003 when he worked second base in a 10-3 Sox win (the park was known as U.S. Cellular Field then).

Two days later, West was behind the plate for the first time in a Sox home game. He worked overtime going 12 innings in an 8-6 Sox win thanks to a two-run home run from Frank Thomas.

That was quite a notable game aside from West’s duties. The contest was the first for new Sox acquisitions Roberto Alomar and Carl Everett and featured Paul Konerko’s first career pinch-hit homer.

*HAPPY 100TH EJECTION! That game also featured the first Sox ejection by West, which was the 100th of his career according to @LFNJSinner who logged each of West’s tossings on Twitter https://twitter.com/lfnjsinner/status/1489684406851809288?s=21

Manager Jerry Manuel got the heave-ho for disputing a fair/foul call on a home run in the first inning. It was Manuel’s seventh ejection of the season and the 14th of his career.

Manuel was irked that the home run was not called fair until Twins manager Ron Gardenhire complained to umpires.

The Sox believed the home run hit the pad in foul territory and not the foul pole as was ruled.

“(Catcher) Sandy (Alomar) got me run,” said Manuel, who indicated the call was correct. “He told me it hit the pad (in foul territory).”

The ejection was one of a career-high 11 West would have that season.

*SOX EJECTIONS: West ejected Sox personnel 10 times (he finished his career with 196).

After Manuel, West sent Ozzie Guillen to the showers three times (June 24, 2007, June 23, 2009 and May 26, 2010), Tim Anderson (Sept. 22, 2018 and April 17, 2019), Rick Renteria (Sept. 22, 2018 and April 17, 2019) twice and Mark Buehrle (May 26, 2010) and Robin Ventura (Aug. 15, 2015) once. 

West tossed Tony La Russa three times when he was manager of the Cardinals (July 5, 1998, July 18, 2002 and Sept. 25, 2010).

*THE MOMENT: West’s most celebrated incident with the White Sox came on May 26, 2010 in Cleveland when he ejected Guillen and Buehrle from his perch at first base for arguing.

At issue were the two balks West called on Buehrle.

Guillen was ejected after West’s first balk call in the opening inning. The call prompted an exchange between Buehrle and West during which Guillen approached West.

According to reports of the day, Guillen wanted to know why West was disrespecting his pitcher. When Guillen did not return to the dugout when West told him to, an animated Guillen was tossed.

“Ozzie came out to protect his pitcher, which was probably a good idea at the time, because Buehrle was drawing lines in dirt on the mound (to show he was within the rules of a legal throw to first), and he was about to get ejected then,” West told the ESPN 1000. “(Guillen) said he was out there not to argue the balk but to protect his pitcher, which he should come out in that situation.

“I said, ‘Everything is OK now, Ozzie, you can go back to the dugout.’ And he got mad because I told him you can go back. He used a few profanity-laced lines that got him ejected.”

Said Guillen: “I never criticized him about the call. I never did. That’s his call and I always respect that. I say what I feel about that particular moment. I think what I said was right.”

Ozzie was in the clubhouse when Buehrle was thrown out by West two innings later after a second balk call.

West’s thumb came when an increasingly agitated Buehrle threw his mitt to the ground.

“I think he’s too worried about promoting his CD and I think he likes seeing his name in the papers a little bit too much instead of worrying about the rules,” Buehrle said of West, who dabbles a country music singer.

West said he hated to see Buehrle leave the game.

“(That) is what’s kind of disheartening,” West said. “This is one of the fastest-working pitchers in the world. We’re not trying to get him out of the game. As soon as I kicked him out of the game, I was thinking, ‘This is great, now how long is this game going to take?’

“We’re not looking to pick on anybody. The simple fact of the matter is he balked. He didn’t like it, he threw his glove and that’s what happened. Things like that happen. I don’t hold any ill will toward him or Ozzie. I think it’s one of those things that just happened.”

West, Buehrle and Guillen were all fined by MLB over the incident.

“I didn’t say anything. I didn’t touch anybody. I didn’t do anything to cause anything,” Buehrle told the Associated Press upon learning of the fine. “I figured there was going to be a fine because no matter what, you get tossed from a game no matter what it is, there’s always a fine. That’s what I assumed I was getting. If I was getting suspended, I think I would have been surprised, yeah.”

Said West when asked of the fine:”I will say that’s none of your business.”

*PILING ON: Longtime White Sox announcer Ken “Hawk” Harrelson fashioned one of his best rants during these incidents, which were broadcast on WGN-TV.

“Joe just get over there and umpire.”

“Joe is looking for problems.”

“I’ll tell you the last couple of years Mr. West has had some problems with the White Sox.”

“He’s a joke. He’s becoming a joke is what he’s doing. He’s becoming a joke to the umpiring profession.”

“It’s getting to be that time for Mr. Joe West.”

“Joe West deserves a suspension. He needs a rest.”

“Joe West wanted to stick it up (Buehrle’s) behind and he did. He should be suspended. That is a flat out absolute disgrace to the umpiring profession what this guy has been doing.”

Here’s the rant: https://youtu.be/c2Nvy3SFs7M

Hard to believe that Hawk was effusive in his praise of West in West’s final season and said they had been friends for 10 years.

*STATS: Speaking of Buehrle, he was 1-0 with a 1.88 ERA in two starts with West behind the plate.

Other Sox pitchers’ performances with West calling balls and strikes:

–Freddy Garcia, 3-1 with a 4.91 ERA in five starts

–Jose Contreras, 1-0 with a 6.75 ERA in six games (three starts). This does not include Game 1 of the 2005 World Series where he gave up three runs in seven innings with West behind the plate.

–John Danks, 3-1 with a 2.87 ERA in seven starts

–Jon Garland, 2-3 with a 3.21 ERA in five starts

–Lucas Giolito, 1-1 with a 2.25 ERA in two starts

–Bobby Jenks, four saves in six appearances with a 0.00 ERA (eight innings). Counting Game 1 of the 2005 World Series, Jenks was unscored upon in seven appearances covering 9.1 innings with five saves and 13 strikeouts with West behind the plate.

–Lance Lynn, 1-2 with a 4.84 ERA in six appearances

–Dallas Keuchel, 3-0 with a 1.54 ERA in three starts

–Liam Hendriks, two saves with a 0.00 ERA in four appearances (one start)

*HE WAS THERE: Among the notable White Sox games West worked included …

–Harold Baines’ one win as White Sox temporary manager on Aug. 18, 2004 (Guillen was serving a suspension). West was behind the plate that day as he was on Harold Baines Day Aug. 11, 2019.

–seven games during the regular season of the White Sox 2005 World Series campaign

–the 2005 All-Star Game in Detroit where he called balls and strikes for Buehrle’s start and win

–Game 1 of the 2005 World Series at U.S. Cellular Field where he was behind the plate (also worked RF in Game 2; LF in Game 3 and 3B in Game 4)

–Game 4 of the 2008 American League Division Series (third base), which was the last Sox home playoff game prior to 2021. He also was also behind the plate for Game 1, in right field for Game 2 and in left field for Game 3).

–Tim Anderson’s “bat flip” game vs. Kansas City on Sept. 22, 2018  at Guaranteed Rate Field (second base) where he threw out (among others) Anderson and Renteria.

“I don’t have much to say about him,” Anderson told the AP at the time. “Everybody knows he’s terrible.”

*THE RECORD: The White Sox really did West right the night he set the record for most games umpired on May 25, 2021 at Guaranteed Rate Field..

There were graphics, video tributes, celebrities, flowers and, yes, boos, as West broke Hall-of-Famer  Bill Klemm’s 80-year old record by working his 5,376th game.

“It was tough to hold back a tear or two, but Tom Hanks said (in a ‘A League of Their Own’) there is no crying in baseball, so you can’t do it,” West told the AP. “It was a very nice thing.”

The Oak Ridge Boys, friends of West, sang the national anthem and other West pals the San Diego Chicken, Emmylou Harris, Mark Eaton, Jim McMahon and Larry Gatlin were on hand as was Commissioner Rob Manfred.

The warm fuzzies didn’t last long.

The next day West ejected Cardinals manager Mike Schildt, who was yukking it up with West less than 24 hours earlier. Schildt was sent to the showers for protesting West’s decision to make incoming reliever Giovanny Gallegos change his hat after detecting a suspicious substance.

This was the last game West worked at Guaranteed Rate Field.

JOE WEST: HE GONE AND WHITE SOX FANS ARE SO HAPPY

Major League Baseball revealed Friday that umpire Joe West is retiring.

And Sox fans couldn’t be happier.

Wow.

I re-tweted MLB’s picture of West with the news of his retirement accompanied by the quote: HE GONE.

The piling on began immediately.

Here’s a sampling of the comments to my tweet (which at last look had 597 likes, 13 quote tweets and 26 retweets, which is a lot for me). Subtitle this virtual booing …

For more visit my timeline at @soxnerd.