Thursday, May 31, 2012

May 31

1916 H801-9 Globe Clothing Store #14 - Joe Benz

On this day in 1914, Joe Benz delivered a no-hitter at Comiskey Park against the Cleveland Naps, winning 6-1.

Throwing primarily spitballs and knuckleballs, Joe became the fourth pitcher with the White Sox to throw a no-hitter. It would be the fifth overall no-hitter for the Pale Hose (Frank Smith had thrown two). The feat was a bright spot in a horrible season which saw the White Sox finish thirty games back of the Philadelphia Athletics and win only seventy games. For the Naps, this would be the nadir for their dismal season. They would eventually finish forty-eight 1/2 games behind the A's, winning only fifty-one games.

This would be the only American League no-hitter thrown in 1914. Interestingly enough, each of the three leagues had one no-hitter that year. George Davis would accomplish the feat for the Boston Braves (against the Philadelphia Phillies) in the National League and Ed Lafitte would have the honors for the Brooklyn Tip-Tops (against the Kansas City Packers) of the Federal League.

Benz, who was born in Chicago, would have his MLB debut in 1911 for the White Sox. The South Siders would be Joe's only team during his major league tenure. His last appearance was on May 2nd for the ill-fated 1919 Sox team. The two innings of relief to finish the game against the St. Louis Browns at Comiskey Park, in a 11-4 loss, was his only appearance that season.

Joe hasn't strayed far from his hometown, even after death. He currently resides in Holy Sepulchre Catholic Cemetery in Worth, Illinois.

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

May 30

1966 Topps #577 - Jack Lamabe

On this day in 1966, Jack Lamabe threw a one-hitter in the second game of a double header against the Boston Red Sox at Comiskey Park, resulting in a sweep for the Chicago White Sox for the day's games.

Jack didn't allow a hit until the eighth inning when Boston third baseman Joe Foy hit a leadoff single to break up the no-hit bid. It wasn't a one-hitter of great beauty. Lamabe loaded the bases in the top of the seventh. Shortstop George Smith reached on an error by his counterpart Lee Elia. Lenny Green flew out to center. Tony Conigliaro struck out for the second out, but Jack then hit George Scott with a pitch and walked Carl Yastrzemski to load the bases. ChiSox shortstop Lee Elia made up for his previous error by catching Dalton Jones' fly ball for the final out of Boston's half of the seventh inning.

Lamabe went 7-9 in 1966 for the White Sox making seventeen appearances as a starting pitcher and seventeen appearances as a relief pitcher. He was 1-0 in three games in April 1967, when he was sent to the New York Mets, where he went 0-3 before being traded to the St. Louis Cardinals in July 1967. Jack spent 1968 with the Chicago Cubs before being traded to the Montreal Expos in 1969, but Lamabe never played in the majors past 1968.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

May 29

2001 Topps Heritage #99 - Greg Norton

On this day in 1999, Greg Norton hit two home runs in a game for the second consecutive game.

Greg would hit one fourth of his home runs for 1999 in those two days. Those sixteen home runs were also Norton's highest season total. Pegged with replacing Robin Ventura at third base in 1999, Norton performed admirably for such a momentous task. He raised his average from .237 in 1998 to .255 in 1999. Although he had career highs in runs, hits, home runs, stolen bases, RBI and walks, Greg had 180 more plate appearances than the previous season to accomplish those totals.

The Sox parted ways with Norton through free agency after the 2000 season, after parts of five seasons. The ChiSox decided to give the third base job to Herbert Perry full time for the 2001 season. Greg stuck around in the majors, except for the 2005 season, until 2009.

Monday, May 28, 2012

WSC Birth Years: Dylan Axelrod

Card #106 - Dylan Axelrod

Born: July 30, 1985

Dylan made his debut on September 7, 2011 for the White Sox, in relief of John Danks. He pitched two scoreless innings against the Minnesota Twins for his first taste of the majors. Axelrod then took Jake Peavy's place in the rotation shortly after, making his starting debut against the Detroit Tigers on September 14th.

Axelrod has been shuttled back and forth between the majors and minors in the 2012 season. Dylan has a good dirty slider which is hard for the parent club to ignore, but fitting into an already crowded rotation and bullpen is a tricky balancing act. Axelrod has been effective in both long relief and as a spot starter. If Dylan keeps being effective, he may find himself a permanent role with the parent club in 2013.

May 28

1987 Donruss #552 - Joe Cowley

On this day in 1986, White Sox pitcher Joe Cowley strikes out the first seven batters he faces, setting a new American League record.

Luck wasn't with Joe that day, as he only lasted four plus innings and took the loss. Although Cowley pitched in five different seasons, his one season with the Chicago White Sox might be his most memorable.

After setting a new AL record for consecutive strikeouts to start a game in May, Joe threw a no-hitter on September 19th. The pinnacle of his career came with a sharp decline. Cowley played the rest of the season with the White Sox and the beginning of 1987 with the Philadelphia Phillies and never recorded another MLB win. Joe is the only player to have his last MLB win as a no-hitter.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

May 27

1990 Bowman #320 - Frank Thomas

On this day in 1968, first baseman and designated hitter Frank Thomas was born.

Drafted by the Chicago White Sox in 1989, Frank made his debut in August 1990 and immediately made an impact as an upgrade to Carlos Martinez. Thomas quickly established himself as one of the premier hitters in the majors, earning him the nickname of the Big Hurt.

Currently, Frank stands above all White Sox players with 448 home runs in a White Sox uniform, but Paul Konerko may eventually surpass that mark. Thomas hit .307 with 2.136 hits, 1,465 RBI, 1.466 walks and 1.327 runs scored in a Sox uniform. Back to back MVP seasons, four Silver Sluggers, five straight All-Star selections, one batting title and the 2000 AL Comeback Player of the Year all suggest that Big Frank just might be a first ballot Hall of Famer.

Saturday, May 26, 2012

May 26

1996 Leaf Signature EXT - Chad Kreuter

On this day in 1996, the White Sox hit four home runs in one inning for the first time.

While at Comiskey Park against the Milwaukee Brewers in the eighth inning, Darren Lewis was at first base when Frank Thomas connected on a ball to deep left field for his fifteenth home run. Harold Baines followed with his eleventh home run, also to left. Robin Ventura then jacked a homer to right field for his ninth. Lyle Mouton singled to center field, knocking Milwaukee pitcher Mike Potts out of the game. Former White Sox pitcher Ramon Garcia replaced Potts and his first pitch to Chad Kreuter goes to right field for a home run. It was Chad's first home run in a Sox uniform and a brand new team record.

Friday, May 25, 2012

May 25

1952 Hawthorn-Mellody - Joe Dobson

On this day in 1952, Joe Dobson and Marv Grissom both threw complete game shutouts in a double header against the Detroit Tigers at Comiskey Park.

Joe was in the middle of a three year stretch with the ChiSox. He came to the South Side in a trade with the Boston Red Sox on December 10, 1950. Dobson was mostly a starter, who would occasionally throw out of the bullpen.

Burrhead, as Joe was nicknamed, went 26-21 for the Pale Hose over three seasons. He completed twenty games, had four shutouts and saved five games, all while keeping a 3.13 ERA.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

May 24

1934 Batter Up #29 - Jimmy Dykes

On this day in 1946, Jimmy Dykes leaves the Chicago White Sox organization after twelve years and thirteen days, which is the longest tenure of a manager in White Sox history.

Jimmy came to the White Sox in 1933, along with Mule Haas and Al Simmons, when the Pale Hose bought the three players from the Philadelphia Athletics for $100,000. Dykes took over the reigns from Lew Fonseca in 1934. He started to drastically decrease his playing time in 1937. Jimmy ended his playing career in 1939 and just focused on the managerial part of his career.

Dykes had a .272 average over seven seasons with the South Siders.He had 551 hits and 307 RBI over that span. As a manager, Jimmy had a 899-940 record with the Sox and never finished higher than third place.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Trade With All The Way To The Backstop

It's been awhile since I've posted any trade posts. I've gotten so far behind in my cards this year, it borders on the ridiculous. Yes, I'm still collecting. Yes, I'm still interested in trading. My time has been a little more limited, since going back to work and school last October, but it's paying off. I only have two classes left before I get my Associates degree and the classes that I've taken since last year, I have aced. I couldn't have asked for a better work situation. I thoroughly enjoy the work and the people there and that makes all the difference.

So, when an opportunity to make a trade with Marcus from All The Way To The Backstop... arose, I couldn't pass up the offer. It was a small trade, but took care of some pesky 90s needs, which is always a welcome sight. Let's see what Marcus sent over.

1991 Score Rising Stars
35 - Craig Grebeck
48 - Robin Ventura
66 - Alex Fernandez
94 - Adam Peterson

1992 Leaf
517 - Kirk McCaskill

1995 Upper Deck
202 - Jason Bere

1996 Select
89 - Ray Durham

1996 Upper Deck
112 - Harold Baines (Young At Heart)

1997 UD3
23 - Robin Ventura

1998 Collector's Choice
116 - Mario Valdez

It's funny seeing cards of Robin Ventura during his playing career, now that he's the manager. As Orel Hershiser has mentioned, Robin Ventura is no stranger anywhere he goes in the world and lights up a room when he enters it. I've never met Robin and I've certainly never been in a room when he lights it up by his mere appearance. I guess I'll chalk that up to Orel's vast knowledge as a broadcaster? Ventura is certainly a change from the previous regime under Fidel Castro disciple Ozzie Guillen.

Thanks, Marcus! There should be a return package in the mail for you by the end of the week.

May 23

1938 Goudey #285 - Rip Radcliff

On this day in 1962, outfielder and first baseman Rip Radcliff died.

Rip played for the White Sox from 1934 until 1939, which was his first taste of the majors. It also turned out to be his longest tenure with a team. Radcliff was mainly known for his contact. He struck out once every twenty-nine at-bats on average during his MLB career, which was good enough for a .310 average while with the South Siders.

His best season with the Sox was 1934. Radcliff hit .335 with 207 hits and 82 RBI. The 207 hits and 82 RBI were career highs. Rip was also named to the American League All-Star team in 1936. He finished his career in 1943, after stops with the St. Louis Browns and the Detroit Tigers.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

May 22

1977 Topps Cloth #55 - Richie Zisk

On this day in 1977, Richie Zisk became only the second player in White Sox history to hit a blast into the center field bleachers at old Comiskey Park.

Out of all the excitement that Richie brought to the South Side Hitmen that season, this may have been the most exciting and the most anticlimactic. The home run came off of Dave Rozema in the eighth inning of a 14-3 loss to the Detroit Tigers.

Zisk would leave the White Sox with the best season in his career, blasting thirty home runs and 101 RBI to go along with a nice .290 average. Even with number twenty-two's career best season, the Sox had the unfortunate luck to be in the American League West, which was won by the Kansas City Royals in 1977 with 102 victories. The Texas Rangers came in second with 94 wins and the Pale Hose lagged behind both teams with a still respectable ninety wins.

Zisk's name may have faded a bit into the background in Chicago lore, replaced by names such as Baines, Fisk, Thomas, Jackson, Belle and Konerko, but Richie Zisk's name still comes up whenever fans reminisce about that magical 1977 season, when the Sox almost hit their way into the postseason with rent-a-players.

Monday, May 21, 2012

May 21

1993 Conlon #977 - Bill Barrett

On this day in 1924, Bill Barrett muscled out four hits and stole home twice.

Whispering Bill played with the Chicago White Sox from 1923 until he was traded to the Boston Red Sox in 1929. Barrett enjoyed his best seasons with the Pale Hose, namely the 1925 and 1926 seasons, where he hit .363 and .307 respectively. In 1927, Bill enjoyed his most productive season, as he had a career high in games played, 147, and team highs in doubles, RBI, stolen bases and sacrifice hits.

While primarily in right field, Barrett also was versatile enough to play all three outfield positions and all four infield positions. Bill even pitched a little for the Philadelphia Athletics before he joined the ChiSox.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

May 20

2001 Donruss Elite Aspirations #148 - David Wells (/67)

On this day in 1963, David Wells was born.

The mistake that was David Wells on the Chicago White Sox cannot be understated. It was a disaster. The White Sox thought they were getting the twenty game winner from the Toronto Blue Jays that was only a few seasons removed from a perfect game. The Jays thought they were getting a high caliber pitcher in return for the 2001 season. What happened on both sides is the fuel for the darkest nightmares.

Mike Sirotka, who was traded to the Blue Jays in the deal, never pitched in the majors again because of a bum shoulder, which Toronto accused the Sox of knowing before the trade. The Sox got an overweight pitcher with a bad back and a 5-7 record, which was his worst record since 1994 with the Detroit Tigers. Adding insult to injury, Boomer left through free agency after the 2001 season and bounced back. He agreed to a contract with the Arizona Diamondbacks, but signed with the New York Yankees... and went 19-7 for the 2002 season. The less remembered about David's season with the White Sox the better.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

2012 Topps Heritage

 I've been looking forward to this Topps Heritage set for many, many years. The 1963 Topps set that this release is based on is one of my all-time favorites. If I were impaired by illegal substances, I'd say that the circus-like swaths of primary and secondary colors made the card irresistible to the eye. Regardless of impairment, the color combination remains eye catching.

The cards have a simplicity to their design, but stand out greatly from the years that immediately surrounds them in Topps history. Most of my criticisms with this set come with authenticity. I don't remember any color action shots on player cards in the original set, yet there's Addison Reed in the middle of a delivery in both shots of his rookie card. Couldn't Juan Pierre be saved for the inevitable update set? He signed with the Phillies in January, yet here he is in a White Sox uniform and White Sox team designation. It was very clear when the 2011 season ended that Pierre wouldn't be back. Still, it's nice to see a final Sox Juan Pierre card, if only to remind ChiSox fans that he was the hardest working outfielder on the 2011 team. Every game I attended, I personally saw Pierre taking full advantage of the free field to do pre-game warmup exercises. Sometimes he was the only one out there, but he was out there doing jumping jacks and wind sprints and practicing outfield throws.

The White Sox are well represented in the set. Perhaps a little too represented in some cases. The White Sox have fourteen cards in the set.

16 - Juan Pierre
35 - Chris Sale
54 - 2012 Rookie Stars (Addison Reed)
86 - Dayan Viciedo
100 - Paul Konerko
118 - A.J. Pierzynski
181 - Brent Morel
223 - Addison Reed
234 - Alejandro De Aza
253 - 2012 Rookie Stars (Addison Reed)
271 - Alexei Ramirez
286 - 2012 Rookie Stars (Addison Reed)
288 - Team Card
337 - Adam Dunn

There are FOUR... count them... FOUR Addison Reed cards!




And all four cards feature the SAME PHOTO! This is both overkill and laziness. If Addison Reed is going to get FOUR rookie cards, could someone dig up a new photo? At least for his solo card, if nothing else. The Rookie Stars cards are not variations of the same card, they are THREE SEPARATE CARDS! Each with it's own number. If you were looking for a way that Topps could screw up a no-brainer set, this would be it.

Here is a list of White Sox candidates that could have replaced Addison Reed on the Rookie Stars cards that played in 2011...

Eduardo Escobar
Hector Santiago
Dylan Axelrod
Shane Lindsay
Zach Stewart

If they were insistent on keeping Addison Reed on the Rookie Stars card, Topps could have given these players their first (and possibly only) card with the White Sox...

Jason Frasor
Jeff Gray
Brian Bruney
Lastings Milledge
Josh Kinney
Dallas McPherson

There are many things that Topps could have done to make this a near-perfect set, but there are a lot of positive aspects readily seen and appreciated. This set still deserves high praise, but it could have been even higher.

May 19

2003 Topps 205 #34 - Magglio Ordonez

On this day in 2004, Cleveland Indians shortstop Omar Vizquel's popup to right field caused a collision between second baseman Willie Harris and right fielder Magglio Ordonez.

The resulting injury to Magglio's left knee caused two trips to the disabled list, which led to Maggs only being able to play in fourteen additional games after the collision. The nature of the injury and a growing rift between Ordonez and manager Ozzie Guillen caused the White Sox to not pursue Magglio in free agency.

Ordonez only played in eighty-two games in 2005, but blossomed into a premier hitter with the Detroit Tigers, who picked him up in free agency, eventually hitting a career high .363 in 2007. The ChiSox instead picked up Jermaine Dye, who became the 2005 World Series MVP. It seems like a situation where everyone was put into a better situation.

Friday, May 18, 2012

May 18

1957 Topps #344 - Paul LaPalme

On this day in 1957, Paul LaPalme turned an easy White Sox win into a nightmare against the Baltimore Orioles.

The White Sox had to catch a train to Boston and the Orioles agreed to end the game at 10:20 regardless of the outcome. The South Siders were down 3-0 going into the seventh inning when they scored four runs. The Sox used five pinch hitters and two pinch runners in the inning. The Pale Hose were still leading 4-3 in the ninth inning when Paul La Palme was brought in to protect the lead with only thirty seconds remaining until the self imposed curfew.  Paul decided to pitch to former ChiSox outfielder Dick Williams instead of stalling with the lead. League rules did not allow for a suspended game under these circumstances so the Sox could have legally stalled the final seconds away. Instead, LaPalme threw to Williams. Dick swatted a home run to tie the game up, which meant that the game would have to be replayed later in the season.

White Sox May 18th birthdays:

1901 - John Happenny
1922 - Gil Coan
1940 - Jim Hicks
1980 - Luis Terrero
1984 - Joakim Soria

Thursday, May 17, 2012

WSC Birth Years: Eduardo Escobar

Card #105 - Eduardo Escobar

Born: January 5, 1989

Eduardo is a valuable asset to the White Sox. He can play three different infield positions. He can play defense. He can switch hit. A triple threat for a utility player!

After a brief call up in 2011, Escobar impressed enough in 2012 Spring Training to break with the parent club. Eduardo's bat hasn't caught on fire, but his defense has been above average while filling in at third, shortstop and second base. His only error, so far in his MLB career has been on April 8, 2012, at third base, against the Texas Rangers. Second baseman Michael Young reached on an error, in an attempted force out that brought Rangers third baseman Adrian Beltre to third base. Since it was in the third game of the season, Escobar's first appearance in 2012, it may have been a case of rookie excitement.

May 17

1969 Topps #173 Bob Christian, Gerry Nyman (Rookie Stars)

On this day in 1969, Jerry Nyman pitched a one-hitter against the Washington Senators, for one of the few highlights of a dreadful season. Nyman allowed a one out single in the second inning to Washington left fielder Brant Alyea.

Jerry would spend 1968 and 1969 with the White Sox, compiling a 6-5 record over that time. Before the 1970 season, Nyman was traded to the San Diego Padres for Tommie Sisk. Jerry would appear in two games with the Padres, losing both games. Sisk fared slightly better. He appeared in seventeen games for the White Sox in 1970, sporting a 1-1 record. Both Nyman and Sisk would have their last MLB seasons in 1970.

White Sox May 17th birthdays:

1888 - Irv Porter
1894 - Frank Woodward
1927 - Jim McDonald
1948 - Carlos May
1982 - Nick Masset

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

May 16

1953 Topps #123 - Tommy Byrne

On this day in 1953, Tommy Byrne hit the only pinch hit grand slam by a pitcher in Chicago White Sox history.

The amazing feat happened at Yankee Stadium in the ninth inning of a game the White Sox were trailing 3-1. Tommy pinch hit for third baseman Vern Stephens, who was 0 for 3 in the game. Manager Paul Richards made the right decision that afternoon. It turned the game around and made the White Sox 5-3 winners over the New York Yankees.

Tommy would be a blink and you'll miss him player for the Pale Hose. Byrne would start the 1953 season with the White Sox, after an October 1952 trade from the St. Louis Browns. On June 11th, Tommy was purchased by the Washington Senators, but was purchased by the White Sox on August 2nd, right after the Senators released him. Byrne didn't make it back with the Sox that season and was traded to the Seattle Rainiers of the Pacific Coast League after the season for Gordon Goldsberry.

Byrne would only start six games for the Sox and come out with a 2-0 record. He was used more frequently as a pinch hitter, appearing in twelve more games in that role.

White Sox May 16th birthdays:

1896 - Red Ostergard
1920 - Dave Philley
1969 - Mike Heathcott

RIP Kevin Hickey

A South Side kid that lived the dream. Rest in peace, Kevin.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

May 15

1984 TCMA 1946 Play Ball #13 - Edgar Smith

On this day in 1941, Edgar Smith gave up a single in the first inning that scored Phil Rizzuto for the New York Yankees lone run during the contest at Yankee Stadium. The Chicago White Sox put up thirteen runs. Seven off of starter Tiny Bonham, two against reliever Charley Stanceu and five off of reliever Norm Branch. The Pale Hose easily defeated the Bronx Bombers, but that first inning single started off a fifty-six game hitting streak by Joe DiMaggio. Given that piece of information, it's unclear which side really won the day.

Edgar was selected off of waivers from the Philadelphia Athletics on April 27, 1939. He would go on to two All-Star selections with the South Siders; one in 1941 and one in 1942. Despite being with the White Sox for seven seasons (1939 - 43, 46 - 47), 1940 was his only winning season. The southpaw pitched decently in his first six seasons with the ChiSox, but a poor club behind Smith hindered his chances at winning.

White Sox May 15th birthdays:

1981 - Justin Morneau

Monday, May 14, 2012

May 14

1977 Hostess #16 - Jim Spencer

On this day in 1977, Jim Spencer became a one man wrecking crew and hit two home runs and eight RBI against the Cleveland Indians.

The game was odd from the beginning. In a cross promotion with McDonald's for their Egg McMuffin sandwich, the game started at 10:30 in the morning. Jim went 3 for 3 with two home runs, including a grand slam. He tied the franchise record for RBI in a single game, set originally by Carl Reynolds on July 2, 1930. The mark has had such diverse company as Tommy McCraw and Robin Ventura. What makes Spencer's feat so remarkable is that he matched it on July 2, 1977 against the Minnesota Twins.

White Sox May 14th birthdays:

1881 - Ed Walsh
1925 - Les Moss
1947 - Dick Tidrow
1957 - Fran Mullins
1963 - Pat Borders
1965 - Joey Cora
1965 - Isidro Marquez
1968 - Mark Dalesandro

Sunday, May 13, 2012

May 13

2001 Upper Deck Decades 1970s #37 - Jim Kaat

On this day in 1975, Jim Kaat's twelve game winning streak screeches to a halt against the Orioles in a 3-2 loss in Baltimore.

Jim, who won twenty games in 1974 and would win twenty-one games in 1975, won his last seven games to close out the 1974 season. Kitty won his first five games to start the 1975 season, before running into the deflating Orioles.

Kaat's twenty-five year career is the third longest in MLB history, behind Nolan Ryan's twenty-seven and Tommy John's twenty-six. Despite only being on the White Sox for slightly over two seasons, Jim racked up a 45-28 record, won two Gold Gloves, was named an All-Star, and had a sparkling 3.10 ERA.

White Sox May 13th birthdays:

1878 - Frank Hemphill
1886 - Frank Miller
1901 - Leo Taylor
1910 - Boze Berger
1934 - Leon Wagner
1947 - Steve Kealey
1969 - Lyle Mouton
1971 - Mike Sirotka
1978 - Ryan Bukvich

Saturday, May 12, 2012

May 12

1914 Cracker Jack #36 - Ed Walsh

On this day in 1904, Ed Walsh makes his MLB debut against the Philadelphia Athletics, in a relief appearance, during a 9-3 loss.

It was the start of a Hall of Fame career that saw him rack up 195 wins, a 1.81 ERA, 250 complete games, 57 shutouts and 35 saves during a thirteen year career with the White Sox. In 1908, Ed won forty games and started sixty-six. Walsh only lost fifteen games that season, in comparison, for a .727 winning percentage.

After the 1912 season, Ed wanted to take a year off to rest his arm, but the Sox convinced them that they needed his services. Walsh came into camp in poor shape and hurt his arm trying to keep up with the younger players. His playing time took a drastic turn downward. By 1916, Ed's arm was dead. He did pitch again in 1917, with the St. Louis Browns, but could only manage a loss in four games.

White Sox May 12th birthdays:

1902 - Dutch Henry
1941 - Floyd Weaver
1983 - Jack Egbert

Friday, May 11, 2012

May 11

1950 Bowman #91 - Cass Michaels

On this day in 1949, the Chicago White Sox scored at least one run in each inning, on their way to a 12-8 victory against the Boston Red Sox. Sox second baseman Cass Michaels had three RBI in the game.

Cass played with the Sox from his initial call up in 1943 until he was traded in the middle of the 1950 season. He came back in 1954, to finish out his career. Michaels made the All-Star team in 1949 for the Pale Hose. He again made the All-Star team in 1950, but after he was traded to the Washington Senators on May 31st.

Cass Michaels changed his name in 1944 partially because few fans could properly pronounce Casimir Kwietniewski, which was his actual name. On August 27, 1954, in the top of the third inning, the Sox had scored five runs and Michaels was up to the plate. After a Jim Rivera triple, Philadelphia Athletics pitcher Marion Fricano hit Cass with a pitch that fractured his skull. That pitch sidelined Michaels for the rest of the season and effectively ended his twelve year career.

White Sox May 11th birthdays:

1917 - Johnny Gerlach
1917 - Dave Short

Thursday, May 10, 2012

May 10

2002 Upper Deck 40 Man #417 - Danny Wright

On this day in 2002, the White Sox suffered the worst defeat in team history.

Danny Wright, Matt Ginter and Mike Porzio combined to give up nineteen runs against the Anaheim Angels at Edison Field. Wright gave up eight runs, all earned. Ginter gave up five runs, only two of which were earned. Porzio gave up six runs, all earned. Only reliever Antonio Osuna escaped without any runs scoring, but by that time, the damage had already been done.

The Sox hitters didn't help matters much. Paul Konerko, Magglio Ordonez and pinch hitter Aaron Rowand only managed one hit each off of starter and future White Sox pitcher Scott Schoeneweis. Frank Thomas and Carlos Lee managed to walk. Lee was promptly caught stealing. On the plus side, Tony Graffanino and Royce Clayton were the only Sox hitters to strikeout.

While this was a horrible outing for Wright, and most of his relievers, he was in the middle of a 14-12 season and posted his lowest season ERA, which unfortunately was 5.18.

White Sox May 10th birthdays:

1895 - Pat Hardgrove
1901 - Ted Blankenship
1910 - Joe Chamberlain
1941 - Ken Berry

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

May 9

1976 Hostess #99 - Wilbur Wood

On this day in 1976, a line drive by future White Sox player Ron LeFlore shattered pitcher Wilbur Wood's left kneecap, in Detroit, Michigan, in a game against the Tigers.

Wilbur did come back from the injury and play another two years, but determined never to let a fluke ball injure him again, Wood changed his delivery to the plate and became less effective. Wilbur had just come off of four straight seasons as the AL leader in games started and was one season removed from four straight seasons of twenty or more wins. After the injury, Wood would post a 17-18 record and a 5.10 ERA in 1977 and 1978 combined. This was a far cry from his 2.80 ERA that Wilbur had over his first ten seasons with the White Sox.

White Sox May 9th birthdays:

1882 - Buck O'Brien
1902 - Wally Dashiell
1935 - Joe Shipley
1936 - Floyd Robinson
1954 - George Enright

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

May 8

1985 Topps #1 - Carlton Fisk

On this day in 1984, Carlton Fisk began a game that would span twenty-five innings and two days. Carlton would catch each of those innings, setting the modern day MLB record.

Twenty-four innings were played on May 8, 1984 until the game was suspended on account of curfew. The game resumed the next day, when Harold Baines hit a game-winning home run and three time Cy Young Award winner Tom Seaver won the game in relief. Seaver was the starting pitcher for the regular game scheduled after completion of the suspended game and Tom picked up two wins that day.

Fisk played all twenty-five innings and then was used as a pinch runner for catcher Marc Hill in the seventh inning during the regularly scheduled May 9th game, where he scored on a Scott Fletcher single. Carlton stayed in to catch the rest of the game. And they call Cal Ripken Jr. the "Iron Man"!

White Sox May 8th birthdays:

1880 - John Skopec
1893 - Edd Roush
1893 - Roy Wilkinson
1950 - Lloyd Allen

Monday, May 7, 2012

May 7

2004 Playoff Absolute Memorabilia #53 - Carlos Lee (/1349)

On this day in 1999, Carlos Lee became the first Chicago White Sox player to homer in his first at-bat.

Carlos accomplished this feat against the Oakland Athletics pitcher Tom Candiotti in the second inning at home in Chicago, which became part of a 7-1 win over the A's. Lee would hit sixteen homers in 1999 and sport a .293 average. Carlos would spent his first six years in the majors with the South Siders, eventually becoming part of a lamented trade with the Milwaukee Brewers that resulted in bringing two catalysts partly responsible for the 2005 World Championship for the Sox; relief pitcher Luis Vizcaino and  stolen base artist Scott Podsednik.

Lee was originally signed by the Chicago White Sox in 1994.

White Sox May 7th birthdays:

1917 - Al Papai
1937 - Claude Raymond
1948 - Ken Hottman
1970 - Brook Fordyce

Sunday, May 6, 2012

May 6

1913 Tom Barker Game #7 - Nixey Callahan

On this day in 1903, the Chicago White Stockings committed twelve errors in a game against the Detroit Tigers and still won the game 10-9!

The White Stockings committed twelve errors‚ and the Tigers committed six‚ for a modern MLB record by two teams in one game. Thirteen of the eighteen errors were made by the infielders‚ another AL mark. Sox rookie shortstop Lee Tannehill led the way with four errors‚ while Frank Isbell (playing third base instead of his customary first base position) and spitball artist Patsy Flaherty contributed three each. Trailing 9-7 in the ninth inning‚ Chicago pulls out a 10-9 victory for Patsy Flaherty over former Chicago Orphan Mal Eason, in his only season in Detroit.

Nixey Callahan was in the unfortunate position of managing the White Stockings on this record setting day. Nixey was not far removed from his own record setting day, the year prior. Callahan pitched the American League's first no-hitter, taking the mound for the Chicago White Stockings on September 20, 1902.

White Sox May 6th birthdays:

1917 - Mike McCormick

Saturday, May 5, 2012

WSC Birth Years: Addison Reed

Card #104 - Addison Reed

Born: December 27, 1988

Addison was selected in the third round of the 2010 draft. He is the second from that year's draft to reach the majors with the White Sox. Chris Sale was the first to reach.

Reed got his feet wet in 2011, when he was called up in September. His fastball and slider impressed and paid dividends in 2012. Addison made the parent club out of spring training and has been virtually lights out through April. Smart money has Reed eventually settling into a closer role, but with Chris Sale's move back to the bullpen from the rotation, that could be delayed further. Until that time, his dominating stuff will work well in the late innings.

May 5

1968 Topps #379 - Gary Peters (All-Star)

On this day in 1968, Gary Peters hit the last grand slam in a MLB game by a White Sox pitcher, in the twentieth century. The likelihood of another White Sox pitcher hitting a grand slam is pretty slim in the age of the designated hitter. Gary hit the slam in the fourth inning of a 5-1 win over the New York Yankees.

The win was the first of only four wins for the 1968 season for Peters. After a stellar 1967, with an All-Star appearance, Gary started his slow decline. His ERA climbed and his strikeouts lessened. After the 1969 season, he was traded to the Boston Red Sox, where he sharply declined, before being released in 1972.

For the five year period between 1963, where Peters won Rookie of the Year, to 1967, there may have been equals, but no better pitcher in the American League. In 1963, he led the AL with a 2.33 ERA and in 1966, he led all American League pitchers with a 1.98 ERA.

White Sox May 5th birthdays:

1882 - Lee Quillin
1884 - Chief Bender

Friday, May 4, 2012

May 4

1977 Topps #58 - Chet Lemon

On this day in 1977, which was actually a rainy night, Chet Lemon went three for four in a game against the Kansas City Royals. His day included a home run, a double, two RBI, two runs scored and a hit by pitch. This game left the White Sox a half game back from the first place Minnesota Twins and a half game ahead of their opponent, the Royals, who would eventually win the AL West.

It was against the Royals during this season that organist Nancy Faust first played "Na Na Hey Hey Kiss Him Goodbye" after a Royals pitcher was given the hook. This helped keep bad blood between the teams for many seasons.

Chet would finish the 1977 season with nineteen home runs, thirty-eight doubles, sixty-seven RBI and eleven hit by pitches.

* If anyone can guess the two reasons why I chose this particular card for today will win some cards! Leave answers in the comments section. The first commenter with both reasons (one easy, one difficult & neither are White Sox related) will win.


The correct answers were... May the 4th has been adopted as a day celebrating Star Wars (May the 4th be with you) and the card was from 1977, when the original Star Wars was released. The other answer was more difficult and required a little musical knowledge. Chet Lemon was chosen to honor MCA (Adam Yauch) of the Beastie Boys, who passed away on the morning of May 4, 2012. A line from the 1987 hit "No Sleep till Brooklyn" which featured the line "Like a lemon to a lime, a lime to a lemon".

White Sox May 4th birthdays:

1876 - Charlie Hickman
1927 - Hal Hudson

Thursday, May 3, 2012

May 3

2012 Topps Heritage #16 - Juan Pierre

On this day in 2011, Francisco Liriano no-hit the Chicago White Sox in Chicago.

The only blemishes on Liriano's performance were six walks. Three of those belonged to left fielder Juan Pierre. White Sox starter Edwin Jackson scattered six hits in his eight inning performance, but he gave up a solo home run in the fourth inning to Jason Kubel, which turned out to be the only run scored in the game. Adam Dunn, Alex Rios and Gordon Beckham grounded into double plays and the Pale Hose left three on base.

Juan even stole a base, but came up empty with scoring opportunities. This perfectly captures the complexity that is Juan Pierre. He does his work and does it fairly well, but with the game on the line, his best efforts mostly came up short when it counted. From missing easy fly balls to unique adventures on the bases all encapsulated Pierre. When Juan had his best days, the Sox offense seemed to nod off, tired of the nonsensical chatter emanating from the windbag manager, similar to the effect of a white noise machine.

White Sox May 3rd birthdays:

1905 - Red Ruffing
1916 - Ken Silvestri
1922 - Ernest Groth
1926 - Stan Jok

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

May 2

1921 Exhibits #8 - Eddie Collins

On this day in 1887, Eddie Collins was born.

In 1914, Connie Mack offered Eddie Collins a five year guaranteed contract to keep Collins from jumping ship to the newly formed Federal League, like many other players were doing. Eddie refused and after the season, Collins' contract was sold to the Chicago White Sox for $50,000.

Eddie stayed with the White Sox from 1915 until 1926. During that time, he would help the Pale Hose capture two pennants, escape the wrath of lifetime banishment, produce three near MVP seasons and place in the top ten of most categories. For many Chicago White Sox fans in the 1920s, Collins was one of the few bright spots in seasons plagued with high losses and a revolving door of "blink and you'll miss them" players.

Collins finished his South Side stint with 2,007 hits, 804 RBI, 965 walks, 368 stolen bases and a .331 batting average. Eddie is the only player to play twelve years with two different teams. He played twelve with the White Sox and thirteen with the Athletics. In 1939, Collins was elected into the Hall of Fame.

White Sox May 2nd birthdays:

1887 - Eddie Collins
1941 - Clay Carroll

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

May 1

1958 Topps #100 - Early Wynn

On this day in 1959, Early Wynn threw a one hitter while striking out fourteen Boston Red Sox batters at Comiskey Park in Chicago, Illinois.

Early helped his own cause by hitting a home run leading off the eighth inning, that led to a 1-0 White Sox winner. The 39 year old Wynn would go on to win 300 games in his career and would be selected to the Hall of Fame in 1972.

White Sox May 1st birthdays:

1919 - Al Zarilla
1955 - Ray Searage
1960 - Charlie O'Brien
1989 - Maikel Cleto
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