Tag Archives: baseball


@SoxNerd Blog for June 12 …

On the day the draft begins, here are some nuggets on the Sox and the MLB’s annual pickfest:

*NO. 11: The White Sox own the 11th overall pick in the draft, which starts today.

The only time the Sox had that choice was in 1975 when they selected right-handed pitcher Chris Knapp out of Central Michigan University.

Knapp, who made his big league debut for the Sox 93 days after being picked, went 15-8 with a 4.80 ERA in 40 games (32 starts) for the Southsiders from 1975 to 1977.

The Michigander was 12-7 for the 1977 Hitmen and his trade directly netted Richard Dotson and ultimately netted Joey Cora and Warren Newson.

Not a bad pick.

*THE BULL: You know who else was taken at No. 11?

“The Bull” himself, Greg Luzinski, a slugging presence on the 1983 “Winning Ugly” White Sox.

The Phillies took the burly first baseman out of Niles (Ill.) Notre Dame High School in 1968.

*SOX STUMPER: Here is the trivia question displayed on the Sox scoreboard for the team’s last home game on this date (2016): Which son of a big league manager earned his only big league win for the Sox on this date in 1985 (answer below)?

*ALSO AT 11: Other notables picked at 11 were Jim Spencer, Andrew McCutchen, Addison Russell, Max Scherzer and Walt Weiss.

*SOX ALMANAC: On this date in 2005, Aaron Rowand’s three-run homer in the 10th off Trevor Hoffman delivered the first-place White Sox an 8-5 win at San Diego.

The Sox tied the game with two in the eighth and Rowand’s homer made a winner out of Cliff Politte, who fashioned two perfect innings of relief.

*HISTORY: No matter who the White Sox take, history says there’s a decent chance he will play in the big leagues.

Through 2012 (the draft that developed the most recent big leaguer in Russell), 71 percent of the players (34-of-48) taken at 11 have played in the bigs.

*STUMPER ANSWER: Bruce Tanner son of Chuck Tanner


@SoxNerd Blog for June 1: 

*HAWK TALK: Here are a few nuggets, @SoxNerd style, on Ken “Hawk” Harrelson, who announced Wednesday that 2018 will be his last season as the White Sox television announcer:

–EXTENDED FLIGHT: At 32 years (33 when it ends), Hawk is the longest-serving TV announcer in White Sox history.

He assumed that title in his 21st season of  2003 when he surpassed Hall of Famer Jack Brickhouse, who worked from 1948 to 1967.

Hawk will fall just short of Hall of Famer Bob Elson’s overall club record for broadcasting service. “The Commander” was behind the Sox mike — primarily on radio — for 35 years.

–HEY PARDS: During his career in the Sox TV booth, Hawk’s regular partners have been Don Drysdale, Tom Paciorek, Darrin Jackson and Steve Stone.

*SOX STUMPER: This is the trivia question flashed on Sox scoreboard for the team’s last home game on this date in 2014: Who is the only pitcher to appear in the postseason for both the White Sox and the Padres?

Answer below.

–PRE-HAWK: The year before Hawk landed at Comiskey Park, 1981, the Sox TV broadcasters were Harry Caray, Jimmy Piersall and Lou Brock.

–INTERIM HAWK: After serving as Sox GM in 1986, Hawk headed to New York to call Yankees games.

During his time away (1987-1989), Drysdale, Frank Messer, John Rooney, Gary Thorne and Jim Durham sat on Hawk’s perch in the Sox TV booth.

–GM HAWK: The Sox were 72-90 and finished fifth in the A.L. West in his only season as Sox GM in 1986. … In June, Hawk fired Tony LaRussa and hired Jim Fregosi as manager. … His front office acquired Bobby Bonilla from Pittsburgh in the Rule 5 Draft and then Hawk traded Bonilla to Pittsburgh for Jose DeLeon during the season. … Hawk’s best trade may have been prying Ivan Calderon away from Seattle for Scott Bradley … Hawk’s top draft pick in 1986 was Northwestern pitcher Grady Hall, who never played in the bigs. The two of Hawk’s picks who did play for the Sox were left-handed reliever Scott Radinsky and catcher Matt Merullo. … The Hawk regime signed Craig Grebeck out of a free agent tryout camp.

*SOX ALMANAC: On this date in 1937, Bill Dietrich, who was referenced by his nickname “Bullfrog” in the iconic 1983 movie “A Christmas Story,” tossed the first no-hitter by a White Sox pitcher in two seasons.

The righty whitewashed the St. Louis Browns 8-0 before an estimated crowd of 1,500 at Comiskey Park.

Dietrich walked two and struck out five in the 10th “no-no” in club history.

The Sox offense made things easy on Dietrich by scoring three times in the first.

–HAWK’S DEBUT: Harrelson’s debut as a player, which came against the Sox, has a neat link to another Sox broadcaster Ed Farmer.

Here’s an earlier Nerd blog on the subject https://soxnerd.wordpress.com/2017/04/15/the-hawk-and-ed-debut-coincidence/

–CHOOSING THE WRONG COLOR SOX: According to press reports of the day (like the United Press International piece above), the Hawk came close to joining the White Sox in 1967.

After being cut by Charlie Finley and the Kansas City A’s, Hawk chose red over white Sox in August of 1967.

The above syndicated story indicated the Hawk chose the Red Sox over the White Sox and their better short-term offer because they offered a contract for 1968.

The offensively-challenged but pitching rich White Sox probably would have won the ’67 pennant with the Hawk in their flock.

*STUMPER ANSWER: Scott Linebrink


@SoxNerd Blog for May 25 …

*HISTORY LESSON: With the White Sox idle today and maintaining their perfect mark on days when they don’t play, what better time to look at the club’s history on this date.

Here is the “Reader’s Digest” version of notable Sox moments that happened on this date with full details below.

–1907: Sox raised their championship banner

–1912: Sox won in 17 innings

–1919: Sox used a triple play to beat Walter Johnson 

–1924: A steal of home helped the Sox prevail 

–1954: Sherm Lollar starred for the Sox at and behind the plate

–1979: Ross Baumgarten flirted with history for the Sox

–1992: Craig Grebeck was tough on the Cubs

–1996: Frank Thomas and Harold Baines reached milestones 

–2007: Luis Terrero!

–2008: CQ did it all for the Sox 

–2012: Jose Quintana and Long John Quinn became forever linked in Sox (Nerd) history.

*SOX STUMPER: Here is the trivia question displayed on the Sox scoreboard during the team’s last home game on this date in 2016 (it was Weather Day, mind you): Which of the following players never appeared in a game for the White Sox? A. Tim Raines; B. Josh Fogg; C. JT Snow; D. Dave Frost

*FULL DISCLOSURE: Here is a look, in detail, at some memorable moments on this date in Sox history:

–On this date in 1907,  the White Sox celebrated the raising of their 1906 World Championship banner with a 3-1 win over New York at South Side Park.
The banner raising was delayed because the original flagpole broke during a ceremony earlier in the homestand.

According to reports of the day, the ceremony was a surprise and was not greeted with the fanfare that accompanied the event where the flagstaff broke some days earlier.

The “immense banner of purple and gold” was raised by the groundskeeper and the fans loved it.

–On this date in 1912,  Ping Bodie’s single scored Harry Lord with the winning run as the White Sox edged Detroit 5-4 in 17 innings.

Frank Lange tossed 10 innings of scoreless relief for the win in what was the longest game at Comiskey Park and the fourth-longest game in club history at the time.

–On this date in 1919, the White Sox got a triple play in the top of the eighth and two runs in the bottom of the eighth to beat Washington and Walter Johnson 6-5 at Comiskey Park.

With the bases loaded in the eighth, center fielder Hap Felsch gloved a deep fly to start the triple play. Felsch got the ball in and eventually third baseman Buck Weaver and Eddie Collins recorded outs to finish off the sixth triple play in franchise history.

–On this date in 1924, Harry Hooper stole home with the go-ahead run in the eighth on the back end of a double steal in the White Sox 10-9 win at Washington.

Ray Schalk caught his 1,500th game but had to leave early after taking a foul tip off the finger.

–On this date in 1954, Sherm Lollar drove in the go-ahead run in the fifth as the White Sox stopped the Indians’ 11-game win streak with a 4-2 victory before 43,059 at Comiskey Park.

The game also featured the last stolen base Lollar would allow all year. From this date until the end of the season, Lollar would throw out the next 18 runners who try to steal.

–On this date in 1979, Ross Baumgarten carried a no-hitter into the seventh in the White Sox 6-1 win at California.

The left-hander went eight innings and yielded an unearned run before giving way to Randy Scarbery, who worked the ninth.

–On this date in 1992, Craig Grebeck went 2-for-2 with two RBI and Dan Pasqua homered in the White Sox 5-0 exhibition win over the Cubs at Wrigley Field.

Larry Thomas started the game and tossed six shutout for the victory while collecting two hits as the Sox upped their record to 7-0-1 since their series with the Northsiders resumed in 1985.

–On this date in 1996, Frank Thomas’ 100th home run at New Comiskey Park and Harold Baines’ 1,300th career RBI helped the White Sox hold off the Brewers 9-7 before 20,585 on the Southside.

–On this date in 2007,  Joe Crede’s sacrifice fly scored Tadahito Iguchi with the winning run in the White Sox 5-4 win over Tampa Bay before 34,538 at U.S. Cellular Field.

Luis Terrero launched a 425-foot homer (which would be the longest at the park in 2007) in the fourth.

The win put the Sox a season-best four games over .500 for the last time. Over the next month, the Sox hit the skids, winning only five of their next 27 games.

–On this date in 2008, Carlos Quentin capped his two-homer game with a walkoff shot leading off the ninth in the White Sox 3-2 win over the Angels before 36,195 at U.S. Cellular Field. Quentin’s two-run homer gave the Sox the lead in the third.

–On this date in 2012, Jose Quintana earned his first big league win in his first big league start in the White Sox 9-3 victory over Cleveland before 21,371 at U.S. Cellular Field.

Quintana became the first Colombian to win a game for the Sox and the first pitcher with a ‘Q’ last name to win a game for the Sox since Jack Quinn won at Philadelphia on Aug. 24, 1918.




IMG_0786 (4)
White Sox Saturday celebration (screen shot from MLB.com)

@SoxNerd Blog in the wake of the Padres series …


*WALKING IT OFF: I love “walkoffs.”

I love them so much so that I have logged everyone the White Sox have pulled off in the new park.

Here are some Sox walkoff nuggets in light of the “sudden victory” they executed on Saturday against the San Diego Padres at Guaranteed Rate Field:

*Saturday was the White Sox 187th walkoff win (first of the season) at New Comiskey Park/U.S. Cellular Field/Guaranteed Rate Field.

*Yolmer/Carlos Sanchez owns the White Sox last two walkoff hits. Sanchez had the Sox last walkoff hit of 2016 when his one-out single in the ninth scored Leury Garcia to give the team a 2-1 win on Sept. 15.

*The last time the Sox notched a walkoff win later than Satuday’s date of May 13 was in 2012 when the first one didn’t happen until June 7.

*Prior to Saturday, the Sox last interleague walkoff came on July 25, 2016 when Tyler Saladino’s one-out single in the ninth scored J.B. Shuck for a 5-4 win over the Cubs.

*Prior to Saturday, the Sox last interleague walkoff against an opponent other than the Cubs was in a 4-3 win over the Reds on May 10, 2015 (Mother’s Day!). Gordon Beckham’s two-out single that scored Avisail Garcia in the ninth in the game where Todd Frazier went 1-for-4 as the Reds third baseman.

*Saturday’s walkoff win was the Sox third against an N.L. West team, first against the Padres and their first against an N.L. West team other than the Los Angeles Dodgers.

The Sox walkoffs vs. the Dodgers came June 18, 2005 on A.J. Pierzynski’s two-run homer in the ninth and on June 25, 2009 when Scott Podsednik’s two-out single scored Gordon Beckham.

*The last six Sox walkoffs have come in the ninth inning, which is tied for the longest such streak in team history (2014). … The Sox last extra-inning walkoff win was a 10-9 victory over 12 against the Tigers on June 13, 2016.

I was happy to meet legendary San Diego Padres’ radio broadcaster Ted Leitner on Saturday.

*NICE MEETING: I have a cool job with the White Sox and I get to do cool things and meet cool people.

When I vacationed in San Diego years ago, I listened to a lot of San Diego Padres games and Ted Leitner while lounging on the beach.

I was hooked on Ted and his style and the ability to listen to him was one of the main reasons I bought the MLB audio package.

Saturday I met Ted and told him how much I admired his work and he couldn’t have been any more gracious. 

*SOX STUMPER: Here is the trivia question I submitted for the White Sox last home game on this date on 2012 against the Tigers: Name the Detroit native who logged the most games in a White Sox uniform.

*SHORT BLAST: Leury Garcia notched the first multi-homer game of his career on Friday night.

The only Sox player shorter than the 5-foot-8 Garcia to record a multi-homer game was the 5-7 Mike Kreevich on June 10, 1938.

CSN stat guru Chris Kamka (friend of the Nerd) posted that Garica was the first Sox leadoff man to log a multi-homer game since Orlando Cabrera on May 18, 2008.

*SOX ALMANAC: On this date in 1941, White Sox ace Edgar Smith surrendered a single which began Joe DiMaggio’s record-setting and legendary 56-game hitting streak in a 14-1 win in New York.

Taffy Wright homered and drove in four runs for the Sox. The game was the eighth in a row in which Wright had driven in a run. His streak would eventually reach an A.L.-record 13.

*ALMOST! If Todd Frazier had capped the White Sox eighth Sunday with a slam, that frame would have been the most prolific eighth in the 117-year history of the franchise.

Frazier’s inning-ending fly out with the bases loaded ended the Sox outburst at eight. The most runs the Sox have scored in an eighth was 11 on July 28, 1931 at New York.

*RIP: StevePalermo, who died Sunday, was the plate umpire for the first game at NewComiskeyPk/USCellularField/GuaranteedRateField on April 18, 1991.

Palermo’s final ejection, before suffering an injury breaking up a robbery left him paralyzed and ended his career ont he field was of Barry Foote on May 28, 1991 at Comiskey Park.

*STUMPER ANSWER: Cass Michaels (795 games from 1943-50, 1954)



@SoxNerd Blog for May 11:

*LET IT RAIN: I miss “Rain Delay Theatre.”

Wednesday’s White Sox rain out at Guaranteed Rate Field happened so early (4:30 p.m.) that in-game alternative programming wasn’t an issue.

Back in the day that alternative programming — aka “Rain Delay Theatre” — was a big deal.

I can hear the mocking already: Only the @SoxNerd could actually enjoy a rain delay.

You could say rain delays and “Rain Delay Theatre” played a significant part in my “nerdness.”

In a way, I was raised on “Rain Delay Theatre” (a topic I have addressed on many platforms in the past), and it made me a better fan and certainly a better student of the game.

In my youth, when the tarp covered Wrigley Field or Comiskey Park, the films and the experts came out on WGN-TV.

While the rain fell, I learned about the 1959 World Series between the White Sox and Dodgers, the Hall-of-Fame laden 1971 All-Star Game, the 1974 World Series and the epic 1975 World Series.

When those films became antiques and forgotten, the Cubs and White Sox filled their rain delays with in-the-booth interviews, which essentially were baseball bull sessions.

Steve Stone, Harry Caray, Tom Paciorek, Hawk Harrelson and often members of the media passed the time mulling over the state of the game, their team and baseball history.

I was a child of the 1970s so most years, the rain delays were more interesting than the teams!

*SOX STUMPER: This was the trivia question flashed on the Sox scoreboard during their game three years ago today: Who has hit the most home runs while playing for the White Sox and Diamondbacks?

Answer below.

*DYK: The White Sox first postponement was on May 7, 1901 due to wet grounds in Cleveland.

*WHITE SOX ALMANAC: On this date in 1973, Mike Andrews’ two-run double in the first inning KO’d Nolan Ryan in the White Sox 7-4 win over the Angels in Anaheim.

Ryan gave up five runs on four hits with one walk while retiring just one batter for the second-shortest start of his career to that point.

The first-place Sox improved to 18-6, the best record in the Majors, and held their two-game lead atop the American League West.

The 24-game start was tied for the second best in club history with the 1919 team. Only the 1912 club, which began 19-5, had a better record after 24 games.

This outing ended up being tied for the third shortest start in Ryan’s Hall of Fame career.

The only shorter starts came on Sept. 28, 1971 when he was with the Mets and on Sept. 22, 1993 when he was making the last of his 773 big league starts for the Rangers. In both games, he did not retire a batter.

Ryan also lasted just one-third of an inning two other times: Aug. 14, 1973 and Sept. 11, 1979 (also against the Sox).

Ryan did not record a strikeout in this game, marking just the fourth time that happened to this point.
Ryan would end up not recording a strikeout in nine starts in his career and, oddly enough, four of them were against the White Sox.

DYK II: The Sox first home postponement was due to cold on May 24, 1901 vs. Connie Mack and his Philadelphia Athletics.

STUMPER ANSWER: Carlos Quentin (111 homers).


Rick Renteria chats with the ump who ejected him on Sunday (MLB.com screenshot)

*THE THUMB: Maybe Hawk was right.

Rick Renteria’s ejection Sunday may have confirmed Hawk Harrelson’s comments that White Sox pitchers weren’t getting any close calls during a 4-0 loss in Baltimore.

The Sox skipper was tossed in the third inning. He was tossed by plate umpire Paul Emmel during an Avisail Garcia at bat.

“He ejected me and that’s all I can say,” said Renteria (MLB.com), who wouldn’t reveal if the thumbing was for disputing balls and strikes.

The ejection was the Sox first of the season.

*SOX STUMPER: Here is the trivia question displayed on the scoreboard during the Sox last home game, which was on this date a year ago: Who was in the White Sox lineup with his brother for the first time on June 23, 1973 at Comiskey Park?

Answer below.

*MORE ON THE THUMB: Here are some other nuggets on Sox ejections …

–This was Renteria’s seventh career ejection and his first since Sept. 26, 2014 when Jeff Nelson threw him out in Milwaukee when he was managing the Cubs.

–If Sunday’s ejection was for arguing balls and strikes, it would be Renteria’s first since June 4, 2014 when Todd Tichenor tossed him at Wrigley Field in a game vs. the Mets. That ejection was preceded by ones on Sept. 26 (balk/non-call) and July 9 (fair/foul).

–Renteria has been tossed six times as a manager and one time as a coach for San Diego on July 17, 2010

–One of Renteria’s ejections as Cubs manager came vs. the Sox. Renteria was told to leave his Cubs 8-3 loss to the Sox at U.S. Cellular Field on May 7, 2014. He was tossed by plate umpire Todd Woodring for disputing balls and strikes

–Prior to Sunday, the Sox last ejection was on Aug. 10, 2016 when Don Cooper got the heave-ho from Pat Hoberg for arguing balls and strikes in Kansas City.

–Robin Ventura’s last ejection as Sox manager came on June 13, 2016 for arguing balls and strikes with Mark Carlson vs. Detroit in Chicago 

–For the record, the Sox first ejection was on May 5, 1901 when manager Clark Griffith was tossed by Tommy Connally in a 21-7 loss at Milwaukee in the first road game in franchise history.

*WHITE SOX ALMANAC: On this date in 1984, the White Sox and Brewers played 17 innings before their game at Comiskey Park was suspended sometime after 1 a.m. with the score 3-3.

The White Sox won what turned out to be the longest game by the clock (8 hours, 6 minutes) in American League history the next day on a home run by Harold Baines in the 25th inning.

*STUMPER ANSWER: Dick Allen (with his brother Hank)



A few Tuesday White Sox notes … @SoxNerd style!

*“HISTORY:” Let it be known that James Shields “issued” the first “pitch-less” intentional walk in White Sox history.

On Monday, the Indians’ Francisco Lindor was awarded first base with Shields on the mound in the sixth inning for an international walk, which are going without pitches beginning this season.

For the record, David Robertson issued the last traditional intentional walk in Sox history on Aug. 10, 2016 to the Royals Alcides Escobar in Kansas City.

*MATT UPDATE: Matt Davidson doubled on Monday to boost his White Sox career average to .400 (4-for-10).

Only Terry Forster — yes, David Letterman’s “Big Tub o’ Goo” — has a higher White Sox career average with more at bats than Davidson.

Forster, a fireballing left-handed reliever, hit .480 (12-for-25) for the Sox from 1971 to 1976.

*MORE MATT: Davidson’s 442-foot homer on April 6 at Guaranteed Rate Field was the longest by a White Sox player in April since Carlos Quentin’s 444-foot shot on April 16, 2011 vs. Anaheim at U.S. Cellular Field.

*CLEVELAND ROCKS! Don’t call Cleveland the “mistake by the lake” to Derek Holland.

The left-hander starts for the White Sox tonight in Cleveland sporting a sterling record in Progressive Field.

An Ohio native, Holland is 3-0 with a 1.23 ERA in four starts in Cleveland.

Holland gave a good indicator that he would be great in this park with a five-hit shutout on June 4, 2011 in his debut there.

Overall, the  30-year-old is 5-1 with a 2.60 ERA in nine starts against the Tribe. Holland certainly didn’t make the Indians’ road to the 2016 World Series any easier. He was 2-0 with a 1.50 ERA in two starts against Terry Francona’s crew last season.

*CENTRAL POWER: Holland has dominated the winners of the last six A.L. Central titles, which obviously includes the Indians.

Facing the Tigers, Royals and Indians — winners of the last six Central titles — Holland is 8-2 with a 3.14 ERA (21 appearances/19 starts).

*WAY BACK MACHINE: Boone Logan faced one batter for the Indians against the White Sox on Tuesday for Cleveland.

Logan made his big league debut for White Sox against Cleveland on April 4, 2006 at U.S. Cellular Field with two shutout innings.

*GEM: According to Elias this is only the second time in history that both reigning pennant winners logged a walkoff win in their home openers.

The Cubs executed one on Monday while the Indians did it on Tuesday.

The only other time it happened? 1960 and the Sox were one of the victors.

On April 19, 1960, the Sox began defense of their American League pennant with a 10-9 walkoff win over Kansas City at Comiskey Park thanks to a Minnie Minoso homer.

That roundtripper capped a huge day for Minoso, who also launched a grand slam and finished with six RBI.