September 2013

Looking for the Sweep

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Today’s News

This Afternoon’s Game

White Sox vs. Twins at U.S. Cellular Field (1:10 p.m., CT, WGN) in the finale of the three-game series with the Sox having won the first two. Starters: LHP John Danks (4-13, 4.73) for the Sox, LHP Scott Diamond (5-11, 5.61) for Minnesota.

Sox Starting Lineup: De Aza, CF; Ramirez, SS; Viciedo, LF; Konerko, 1B; Dunn, DH; Semien, 3B; Jor. Danks, RF; Phegley, C; L. Garcia, 2B.

Sox to Honor Micah Johnson

Before today’s game, White Sox prospect Micah Johnson will be honored by the organization for leading minor-league baseball with 84 stolen bases in 2013. GM Rick Hahn and Assistant GM Buddy Bell will present Johnson with a commemorative base and plaque.

Johnson hit .312 with 24 doubles, 15 triples, seven homers, 58 RBI and 106 runs scored among his stops at Class A Kannapolis and Winston-Salem and the Class AA Birmingham Barons. He topped off his season by being named the MVP of the Southern League Championship Series, won by the Barons.

Baines and Santiago Meet the Troops

Take a look at Harold Baines and Hector Santiago as they visit with members of the military a week ago on 9/11. Both were personally affected on that fateful day in 2001. Baines was in New York with the Sox, who were in town to play the Yankees, and Santiago could actually see the devastation first-hand from his Newark, New Jersey middle school.

http://wapc.mlb.com/play/?content_id=30670473

From the Archives: Sox Players Benefit from a Courageous Couple

http://thestacks.deadspin.com/how-a-white-couple-stuck-up-for-black-ballplayers-in-ji-1309892662

Play(s) of the Day

Jose Quintana won his eighth game of the year last night with another outstanding performance in the Sox’s 4-3 win over the Twins. He allowed just one run on eight hits, issued a pair of walks and struck out five…Dayan Viciedo went 3-5 with a pair of RBI, Alexei Ramirez drove in a run with his 39th double of the season and rookie Marcus Semien got the Sox on the board in the second inning with an RBI single…Jordan Danks made a spectacular catch in right field to rob Trevor Plouffe in the fifth (see Photo/Video of the Day)…Addison Reed pitched a 1-2-3 ninth for his 38th save, which ties him for fifth-most in the American League this season. He is now also tied with Roberto Hernandez (1993 and 1996) for the fifth-most in a season in Sox history.

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Quote of the Day

Paulie, on what he hears from Sox opponents about Quintana (via Colleen Kane in the Trib):

“Just real poised…They always just rave about how good his stuff is No. 1, but he just doesn’t give you anything. He doesn’t really show anything out there, which is a good thing.”

Tomorrow’s Schedule

Off-day. On Friday, White Sox vs. Tigers at Comerica Park, Detroit (6:05 p.m., CT, WCIU) in the opener of a three-game series. Starters: RHP Andre Rienzo (2-2, 5.04) for the Sox, RHP Matt Scherzer (19-3, 2.95) for Detroit.

Did You Know…

that Alexei is hitting .392 with eight doubles, four homers and 14 RBI in 18 games vs. the Twins this season? He is also three doubles away from tying Red Kress (1932) and Hall of Famer Luke Appling (1937) for most two-base hits (42) in a season by a Sox shortstop.

Photo/Video of the Day

Jordan’s great grab:

http://atmlb.com/1eNCNel

Quintana, Sox Go for Two in a Row vs. Twins

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Today’s News

Tonight’s Game

White Sox vs. Twins at U.S. Cellular Field (7:10 p.m., CT, CSN). Starters: LHP Jose Quintana (7-6, 3.56) for the Sox, RHP Mike Pelfrey (5-12, 5.31) for Minnesota.

Sox Starting LIneup: De Aza, CF; Ramirez, SS; Viciedo, LF; Dunn, DH; Konerko,1B; Danks, RF; Beckham, 2B; Phegley, C; Semien, 3B.

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White Sox Hero of the Game…a Cool Story

I received this e-mail today from Sox fan Tony P.:

I am long time reader of your blog and remembered that your email address was in there. I wanted to see if you could pass along my email to Mr Reinsdorf. I just wanted to extend my family thanks to him and to acknowledge 3 of his employees for making September 13th, 2013 one of the best days of my Dad’s life. During the game last Friday, my Dad was honored as the White Sox Hero Of The Game.

My Dad is a Vietnam Veteran that has cancer. He got the cancer due to the agent orange that they used in Vietnam. He has been battling cancer for the past 5 years. With the help of Amy, Josh and Scott, I was able to arrange group outing of 90+ people to the ballpark that day.  They even helped me put a message on the scoreboard that surprised everyone. It had my Dad’s favorite saying on there, “Today Matters”. This is my Dad’s motto that helps him get through his cancer fighting days.

He was very impressed on how everyone in the organization treated him that day. When he was being walked to the dug out, various White Sox employees (Players, Chefs, Security, Ushers….) were giving him high fives and thanking him for his service.

My Dad was also surprised by the turnout especially when all of his firefighter buddies showed up. He hasn’t seen some of them in over 10 years!  Below is what he posted the next morning on Facebook.

“Well today was truly the best day I had in the last 5 years. It was truly amazing. So thankful to the Chicago White Sox for honoring me for my military service as the Hero of the Game today. So many took the time off on a weekday to share this experience with me and I have to tell you it was very humbling. I thank Tony, Geri and everyone involved in putting this together. It is a memorable experience that will forever be etched into my heart. It was great to see my family , friends and so many new friends I made today. This was a Welcome Home any Vietnam Veteran would be proud to be part of or any veteran for that matter. I thank you all from the bottom of my heart for this most wonderful day. God Bless all of You! Today Matters…..”

Words can’t describe how thankful I am are for Amy, Josh and Scott for helping me make this day a reality. Please make sure they get the credit they deserve for all of their help.

#Vote4Hawk

Hawk Harrelson is a candidate for the Baseball Hall of Fame’s 2014 Ford C. Frick Award for excellence in baseball broadcasting. You can vote for him now at http://atmlb.com/1eLDPrj.

And here’s candidate Harrelson like you’ve never seen him before:

http://wapc.mlb.com/cws/play/?content_id=30679589&query=hawk

Paulie and Gordon Up Close & Personal

http://adrinkwith.com/gordon-beckham-paul-konerko/

Play(s) of the Day

The White Sox’s 12-1 triumph over the Twins last night was a success in many ways. Rookie Erik Johnson claimed his first major-league win with six scoreless innings, allowing just four hits and two walks while striking out eight…The Sox offense broke out early, jumping out to a 7-0 lead in the first inning…Alexei Ramirez pounded out four hits, including his fifth home run in the seventh, was a triple shy of a cycle and drove in three runs…Adam Dunn (32) and Dayan Viciedo (13) hit back-back homers in the fourth inning and Jordan Danks added his fourth long one in the sixth…Dunn’s homer was the 438th of his career, tying him for 39th place with Andre Dawson on the all-time list.

Enjoy the four homer onslaught:

Dunn: http://atmlb.com/165Y7Iu

Viciedohttp://atmlb.com/165YlPZ

Dankshttp://atmlb.com/16ajCRu

Ramirez: http://atmlb.com/16alZ6U

Quote of the Day (tweeted yesterday)

Tomorrow’s Schedule

White Sox vs. Twins at U.S. Cellular Field (1:10 p.m., CT, WGN) in the finale of the three-game series. Starters: LHP John Danks (4-13, 4.73) for the Sox, LHP Scott Diamond (5-11, 5.61) for Minnesota.

Did You Know…

…that the White Sox last night recorded their largest margin of victory this season and set a season high for runs in a game?

…that 30 years ago today, the “Winning Ugly” White Sox clinched the A.L. West pennant with a 4-3 victory over Seattle? Harold Baines’ sac fly scored Julio Cruz for the game-winner in the bottom of the ninth as Dennis Lamp got credit for the win in relief. The Sox went on to win the division by 20 games.

Photo of the Day

Johnson recorded big-league victory No. 1.

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Current and Future Sox Contributed to Birmingham’s Southern League Success

Monday, September 16, 2013

Today’s News

Tonight’s Game

White Sox vs. Twins at U.S. Cellular Field (7:10 p.m., CT, CSN) in the opener of a three-game series. Starters: RHP Erik Johnson (0-2, 4.66) for the Sox, LHP Liam Hendriks (1-2, 5.25) for Minnesota. Johnson is shooting for his first big-league win.

Sox Starting Lineup: De Aza, CF; Ramirez, SS; Gillaspie, 3B; Konerko, 1B; Dunn, DH; Viciedo, LF; Jor. Danks, RF; Beckham, 2B; Anderson, C.

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Play of the Day: The Birmingham Connection

Erik Johnson and his college and pro teammate Marcus Semien, whose two hits yesterday in the Sox’s loss to Cleveland brought his average to .346 since coming to Chicago, both spent a good portion of this season at Class AA Birmingham–the brand new Southern League champions. Semien, in fact, was named the league’s MVP for his performance before being called up to Class AAA Charlotte. Johnson was 8-2 with a 2.23 ERA prior to joining the Knights. RHPs Jake Petricka and Daniel Webb and C Miguel Gonzalez, all now with the Sox, also contributed to the championship season.

All five undoubtedly experienced a great deal of satisfaction last night as their ex-mates clinched the Barons’ first league championship since 2002. Host Birmingham, managed by Julio Vinas, won the title, 4-2, by capturing the winner-take-all fifth game in the best-of-five series against the two-time defending champion Mobile BayBears, a Diamondbacks farm club. 

The MVP of the championship series was second baseman Micah Johnson (pictured below), who joined the Barons in late August from High Class A Winston-Salem after he started the season at Class A Kannapolis. He hit .450 with a homer, six runs scored and four RBI in the five games and in the decisive contest last night, he went 2-4 with a home run, two runs batted in and two runs scored.

In the entire postseason, Micah led the team with a .368 average, 12 runs scored and seven steals while driving in seven runs and walking seven times. The talented speedster, a top Sox prospect, led the entire minor leagues in stolen bases in 2013 with 84 and batted .312 with a .373 on base percentage in his three stops during the regular season. 

Here’s more:

http://www.al.com/sports/index.ssf/2013/09/birmingham_barons_win_southern.html

http://www.milb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20130916&content_id=60747108&fext=.jsp&vkey=news_milb&sid=milb&tcid=tw_share

http://www.al.com/sports/index.ssf/2013/09/birmingham_barons_timeline_rel.html#incart_river

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Quote of the Day

@BhamBarons: FINAL: Barons 4 Mobile 2!!! 2013 SOUTHERN LEAGUE CHAMPIONS! GO CRAZY BIRMINGHAM!!!

Tomorrow’s Schedule

White Sox vs. Twins at U.S. Cellular Field (7:10 p.m., CT, CSN). Starters: LHP Jose Quintana (7-6, 3.56) for the Sox, RHP Mike Pelfrey (5-12, 5.31) for Minnesota.

Did You Know…

…that with his seven strikeouts last night vs. the Tribe, Chris Sale is just one shy of Gary Peters’ franchise record for lefthanders (215) set in 1967?

Sox Notes of Note

Happy Birthday to both Gordon Beckham (27) and bench coach Mark Parent (52)…Hector Santiago, who last week was selected as the Sox nominee for the 2013 Marvin Miller Man of the Year Award (honoring on-and-off-the-field achievements), has also been chosen as the club’s nominee for this year’s Roberto Clemente Award–”which pays tribute to Clemente’s achievements and character by recognizing current players who truly understand the value of helping others”…Vance Law, the third baseman on the 1983 “Winning Ugly” White Sox and currently member of the organization as a special assistant to player development, sang the National Anthem before last night’s game. Interestingly, Vance’s Dad, Vern, the 1960 National League Cy Young Award winner, was a teammate of Clemente’s on the Pirates…Scotty McCreery, the 2011 American Idol winner, was at the ballpark yesterday to promote the RBI (Reviving Baseball in Inner Cities) program and visited the #SoxSocial Lounge.

Photo of the Day

The 2013 Southern League Champion Birmingham Barons.

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http://pic.twitter.com/hMyIEC1hU6

Sox Counting on Sale in Series Finale vs. the Tribe

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Today’s News

This Afternoon’s Game

White Sox vs. Indians at U.S. Cellular Field (1:10 p.m., CT, CSN) in the finale of the four-game series. Starters: LHP Chris Sale (11-12, 2.90) for the Sox, RHP Zach McAllister (7-9, 4.11) for Cleveland.

Chris has won five of his last six decisions, winning his last start on September 9 vs. the Tigers allowing just one run on four hits over 8.0 IP along with eight strikeouts. He ranks among the American League leaders in complete games (1st, 4), quality starts (T2nd, 22), strikeouts (3rd, 207), opponents average (3rd, .223) and ERA (5th).

Sox Starting Lineup: L. Garcia CF, Beckham 2B, Ramirez SS, Dunn 1B, Keppinger DH, Viciedo LF, J Danks RF, Phegley C, Semien 3B

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Barons vs. BayBears Tonight: Winner Take All

The Birmingham Barons, the Sox Class AA affiliate, and the Mobile BayBears will clash tonight in Game 5 of the best-of-five Southern League Championship Series at Regions Field in Birmingham. The BayBears, an Arizona Diamondbacks affiliate, defeated the host Barons last night, 3-1, to tie the series at two games apiece and force a fifth game. 2B Micah Johnson, the minor league stolen base leader, collected three hits, a pair of stolen bases and scored a run in the loss. Here’s a look at Micah’s night:

http://www.milb.com/multimedia/vpp.jsp?content_id=30624935&sid=t247

Play(s) of the Day

The Sox executed two outstanding defensive plays in last night’s 8-1 loss to the Indians. RF Avi Garcia robbed Jason Giambi of an extra-base hit with a leaping catch in the second inning and CF Alejandro De Aza denied Jason Kipnis of a homer in the fourth with a catch at the centerfield wall (see Photo/Video of the Day)..Josh Phegley had a three-hit night with a pair of singles and a double and drove in the lone Sox run with a ninth inning sac fly…Conor Gillaspie had a mult-hit night with two singles.

Quote of the Day

As we devote another Sunday to honoring the 1983 “Winning Ugly” White Sox, here is the latest in a series of excerpts from Bob Vorwald’s book, What It Means to be a White Sox. Sox icon Harold Baines talks about that team and driving in the winning run that clinched the A.L. West pennant.

“In 1983 I was still young, and it was just my fourth year in the league. We had a good mixture of young and old guys–well, old in baseball terms, but not in age. We had great chemistry, especially in the second half where we played so well right up until we got to the playoffs.

“On the clincher, I was up and hit a sac fly at the end. I was just hoping the fly ball got out there far enough for Julio (Cruz) to score. I’ll never forget it. It was my first time winning something…it was a great moment.”

Tomorrow’s Schedule

White Sox vs. Twins at U.S. Cellular Field (7:10 p.m., CT, CSN) in the opener of a three game series. Starters: RHP Erik Johnson (0-2, 4.66) for the Sox, LHP Liam Hendriks (1-2, 5.25) for Minnesota.

Did You Know…

…that Phegley’s three hits matched his career high (he did it on July 20 vs. the Braves) and he’s batting .294 since August 31?

Photo/Video of the Day

The Avi Garcia and De Aza web gems:

http://wapc.mlb.com/cws/play/?content_id=30610211&topic_id=51231442&c_id=cws

http://chicago.whitesox.mlb.com/mlb/gameday/index.jsp?c_id=cws&gid=2013_09_14_clemlb_chamlb_1&lang=en&content_id=30613245&mode=video

Rienzo Goes for Second Straight Victory; Birmingham Can Win Southern League Crown Tonight

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Today’s News

Tonight’s Game

Happy Halfway to St. Patrick’s Day: White Sox vs. Indians at U.S. Cellular Field (6:10 p.m., CT, WGN). Starters: RHP Andre Rienzo (2-1, 4.50) for the Sox, RHP Ubaldo Jimenez (11-9, 3.62) for the Tribe. In his last start, against the Orioles, Andre (pictured below) collected his second career victory, allowing just one run and four hits in 6.2 IP.

Sox Starting Lineup: De Aza, CF; Beckham, 2B; Ramirez, SS; Konerko, 1B; A. Garcia, RF; Gillaspie, DH; Viciedo, LF; Phegley, C; Semien, 3B.

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Barons Look to Clinch Title

The Birmingham Barons, the Sox’s Class AA affiliate, still hold a two games to one lead in the best-of-five Southern League Championship Series despite a 6-0 home loss last night to the two-time defending champion Mobile BayBears, a Diamondbacks farm club. Game 4 is tonight in Birmingham with LHP Scott Snodgress (below), the club leader with 11 wins, getting the starting nod for the Barons. A victory will give Birmingham its first Southern League title since 2002.

More Barons: Birmingham yesterday was named the Southern League Organization of the Year, presented to the club that exemplifies the most complete franchise in the SL, and GM Jonathan Nelson was chosen as the league’s Executive of the Year for the second time (2009). In addition to their excellence on the field, the Barons led the league in total attendance (396,820) and average per game (5,669) at brand new Regions Field.

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Play(s) of the Day

Paulie singled and drove in the lone Sox run in yesterday’s 3-1 loss to Cleveland…Marcus Semien, playing second base, had his second straight two-hit game, stole his first big-league base and made a beautiful play behind the second-base bag, flipping the ball backhanded from his glove to Alexei Ramirez for a force out to end an Indians threat in the fourth inning (see Photo/Video of the Day)…Alexei had a three-hit game, Dayan Viciedo added a pair of singles and Jordan Danks singled and walked twice…Jake Petricka (1.1 IP), David Purcey (2.2) and Nate Jones (1.0) worked five scoreless innings in relief of Hector Santiago.

Quote(s) of the Day

An Inside Look at Marcus Semien: From a piece in the Sun-Times by Daryl Van Schouwen

Semien on his introduction to the major leagues:

“I’m starting to see the pace of the big-league game is a little faster. I’ve been working hard every day in early work, trying to adjust as fast as I can here. They’ve put me in different situations just to see how I react to it.’’

Gordon Beckham on Marcus:

“He’s quiet. Goes about his business. He doesn’t strike me as a person that is going out of his lane, so to speak. It looks like he’s learning and listening.’’

Assistant General Manager Buddy Bell’s assessment of Semien:

“I think he’s going to hit, and he also has the ability to play all three positions. He has a legitimate chance to help us next year. Whether or not it’s out of spring training, I don’t know. I think he’s capable.’’

Tomorrow’s Schedule

White Sox vs. Indians at U.S. Cellular Field (1:10 p.m., CT, CSN) in the finale of the four-game series. Starters: LHP Chris Sale (11-12, 2.90) for the Sox, RHP Zach McAllister (7-9, 4.11) for the Tribe.

Did You Know…

that Petricka extended his scoreless streak to five games (7.2 IP) in yesterday’s contest?

Photo/Video of the Day

Semien’s “flip.”

http://wapc.mlb.com/cws/play/?content_id=30568229&topic_id=8878818&c_id=cws

White Sox vs. Tribe: A Friday the 13th Matinee

Friday, September 13, 2013

Today’s News

This Afternoon’s Game

White Sox vs. Indians at U.S. Cellular Field (1:10 p.m., CT, WGN). Starters: LHP Hector Santiago (4-8, 3.44) for the Sox, RHP Danny Salazar (1-2, 2.92) for Cleveland.

Sox Starting Lineup: Jor. Danks, RF; Semien, 2B; Ramirez, SS; Dunn, DH; Konerko, 1B; A. Garcia, CF; Gillaspie, 3B; Viciedo, LF; Anderson, C.

Barons One Game Away From Title

The Birmingham Barons, the Sox’s Class AA affiliate, are a game away from their first Southern League crown after defeating the defending champion Mobile BayBears, 8-2, last night in Mobile to take a two games to none lead in the best-of five championship series. Game 3 is set for tonight at Regions Field in Birmingham.

With a roster full of Sox prospects, the Barons were led by DH Trayce Thompson’s homer and two RBI, 2B Micah Johnson’s two hits and two runs scored and winning pitcher Chris Beck’s (pictured below) outstanding six innings of work, allowing just one earned run, six hits and two walks while striking out four. 

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Play(s) of the Day

Paulie hit his 11th homer of the season, a solo shot, and 433rd of his career in last night’s loss to the Indians. Konerko is batting. 339 with three doubles, two home runs and eight RBI over his last 16 games…INF Marcus Semien had a pair of hits, including his first major-league extra-base hit (a double)…Miguel Gonzalez recorded his first major league hit (a single) and Avisail Garcia added two singles. Avi is hitting .333 in his last 26 games, including 10 multi-hit efforts…Dylan Axelrod, with his 5.0 scoreless innings, made the longest relief outing of his career.

Quote(s) of the Day

I posted yesterday that rookies Semien and RHP Erik Johnson were among the players named to Baseball America‘s 2013 Minor League All-Star first team and were teammates on the University of California-Berkeley squad that made it to the 2011 College World Series.

Colleen Kane points out in today’s Trib that they were also roommates at Cal and played summer ball together in the Northwoods League in Minnesota as well as being drafted the same year (2011) and called up to the majors on the same day (September 3).

“We’ve been together through everything, actually,” Semien told Kane.“It’s pretty cool. If you have any questions, you can always go to him and ask because we’ve kind of gone through the same things. You don’t feel like you’re alone through this.”

Johnson added:  “It makes me comfortable when he’s out there playing behind me.”

Tomorrow’s Schedule

White Sox vs. Indians at U.S. Cellular Field (6:10 p.m., CT, WGN). Starters: RHP Andre Rienzo (2-1, 4.50) for the Sox, RHP Ubaldo Jimenez (11-9, 3.62) for the Tribe. In his last start, against the Orioles, Andre collected his second career victory, allowing just one run and four hits in 6.2 IP.

Did You Know…

…that PK leads all active players with 48 homers against the Indians?

Photo of the Day

Santiago is on the mound today looking to even the series against Cleveland.

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Indian Summer Arrives on the South Side

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Today’s News

Tonight’s Game

White Sox vs. Indians at U.S. Cellular Field (7:10 p.m., CT, CSN) in the opener of a four-game series. Starters: LHP John Danks (4-12, 4.45) for the Sox, RHP Corey Kluber (8-5, 3.54) for the Tribe.

Sox Starting Lineup: De Aza, CF; Beckham, 2B; Ramirez, SS; Dunn, DH; Konerko, 1B; A. Garcia, RF; Viciedo, LF; Phegley, C; Semien, 3B.

Barons Take Lead in Series

The Birmingham Barons, the Sox’s Class AA affiliate, took a one game lead over the Mobile BayBears (Arizona’s farm club) last night in the opener of the Southern League Championship Series by defeating the defending league champions, 8-3, in Mobile. Game 2 is set for tonight.

Starter Chris Bassitt, a Sox prospect headed to the Arizona Fall League, got credit for the win with 5.2 scoreless innings. He allowed just six hits and two walks along with seven strikeouts and bested the Diamondbacks No. 1 prospect, RHP Archie Bradley. The Barons put together a 14-hit attack which saw third baseman Cody Puckett pound out three hits and five others, including promising second baseman Micah Johnson and shortstop Tyler Saladino, deliver a pair. Puckett, with a two-run homer, Johnson and Saladino also drove in two runs apiece. Here’s more:

http://www.milb.com/news/article.jspymd=20130912&content_id=60342710&fext=.jsp&vkey=news_milb&sid=milb

Play(s) of the Day

It was another superb start for Jose Quintana in last night’s 1-0 loss to the Tigers. He pitched seven scoreless innings, allowing just five hits and two walks with six strikeouts in getting another no decision. It was his 17th no decision of the season, an American League record (Hall of Famer Bert Blyleven holds the major-league mark of 20, set in 1979)…Leury Garcia, leading off and playing a solid second base, went 3-4 and stole two bases.

Quote of Day

Catcher Miguel Gonzalez (pictured below) was the last of the Sox September call-ups to make his major-league debut when he replaced fellow rookie Josh Phegley in the seventh inning Tuesday night. The 22-year-old from Venezuela, who grounded out in his only plate appearance, spoke through an interpreter to Colleen Kane of the Trib:

Probably the best experience I’ve had in my life. Hitting, I felt a little bit off with my timing, but it was a great experience overall.”

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Tomorrow’s Schedule

White Sox vs. Indians at U.S. Cellular Field (1:10 p.m., CT, CSN). Starters: LHP Hector Santiago (4-8, 3.44) for the Sox, RHP Danny Salazar (1-2, 2.92) for Cleveland.

Did You Know…

that RHP Erik Johnson and INF Marcus Semien (the Southern League MVP) have been named to Baseball America‘s Minor League All-Star first team? It’s interesting to note that Johnson and Semien were teammates on the University of California-Berkeley team that advanced to the 2011 College World Series.

Photo of the Day

Robin Ventura, Chris Sale, Adam Dunn and EVP Ken Williams visited the Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago today. Here’s Adam demonstrating his smart phone to a new friend:

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Another Series Victory Over the Tigers is Within Our Grasp

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Today’s News

Tonight’s Game

White Sox vs. Tigers at U.S. Cellular Field (7:10 p.m., CT, CSN) in the rubber match of the three-game series. Starters: LHP Jose Quintana (7-6, 3.70) for the Sox, RHP Anibal Sanchez (13-7, 2.61) for Detroit. The Sox took two of three from the Tigers the last time they met–August 12-14 at U.S. Cellular.

Sox Starting Lineup: L. Garcia, 2B; Jor. Danks, RF; Ramirez, SS; Konerko, 1B; Dunn, DH; A. Garcia, CF; Viciedo, LF; Phegley, C; Semien, 3B.

From the Archives: White Sox Remember September 11, 2001

A story by mlb.com‘s Scott Merkin, written on the 10th anniversary of 9/11 two years ago:

http://atlanta.braves.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20110904&content_id=24198526&vkey=news_cws&c_id=cws

Barons vs. BayBears

The Birmingham Barons, the Sox’s Class AA affiliate, square off tonight against the defending champion Mobile BayBears (a Diamondbacks farm club) in Game 1 of the best-of-five Southern League Championship Series at Hank Aaron Stadium in Mobile, AL.

The World According to Hawk

http://wapc.mlb.com/play/?content_id=30490193

Vote for Hector

Hector Santiago is the White Sox nominee for the Marvin Miller Man of the Year Award, honoring on and off-field achievements. Cast your vote here:  http://atmlb.com/1aCJfTM

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Play(s) of the Day

While Conor Gillaspie had a rough game defensively with a trio of errors, he also singled, doubled and drove in our lone run last night in the loss to the Tigers…Paulie, who collected a hit and two RBI on Monday night, had a pair of singles.

Quote(s) of the Day

–@SoxNerd: 

Good morning . @whitesox fans! On this day, maybe more than others, I am grateful to b a sox fan in the United States of America!

–As a former All-Star third baseman, Robin understands–certainly more than most–that nights like Conor had last night are going to happen to the best of players. It even happened to Ventura, a Gold Glove winner:

“I’ve had nights that were just like it. It’s a rough one to take on, but I know he’s going to come back–the effort and competitiveness, all that stuff, is going to be there. It’s one thing if he doesn’t care, but I know he cares a lot. Not easy…but everybody has a night like that.”

 –Pitching coach Don Cooper on Chris Sale (via Colleen Kane in today’s Trib):

“He’s certainly a Cy Young candidate for me. That’s how I feel about him going out there every five days. I was thinking on my way to work, I can’t wait for five days for him to run out there again because he’s good and I enjoy watching him. That’s one of the reasons I was back yesterday (from a brief absence due to illness) because I wasn’t going to miss that one.”

Tomorrow’s Schedule

White Sox vs. Indians at U.S. Cellular Field (7:10 p.m., CT, CSN) in the opener of a four-game series. Starters: LHP John Danks (4-12, 4.45) for the Sox, RHP Corey Kluber (8-5, 3.54) for the Tribe.

Did You Know…

…that Gillaspie is batting .571 with three doubles, a homer, two RBI and four runs scored over his five-game hitting streak?

Photo of the Day

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Sox Go for Third Straight Win Tonight; GM Hahn Talks Past, Present and Future

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Today’s News

Tonight’s Game

White Sox vs. Tigers at U.S. Cellular Field (7:10 p.m., CT, WCIU). Starters: RHP Erik Johnson (0-1, 4.50) making his second career start and first at home for the Sox, RHP Rick Porcello (11-8, 4.76) for Detroit.

Sox Starting LIneup: De Aza, CF; Beckham, 2B; Ramirez, SS; Dunn, DH; Konerko, 1B; A. Garcia, RF; Gillaspie, 3B; Viciedo, LF; Phegley, C.

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The State of Our Sox

As the Sox returned to Chicago, General Manager Rick Hahn spoke to the media before last night’s game about a variety of subjects:

Reflecting on the season that has been and looking towards the remainder of the year…

Rick: I’m not spending a lot of time thinking about what could have been.  Our focus is more on getting the most out of the next 20 games and seeing some of the young guys contribute.  We’d like to see them demonstrate what they are capable of doing and then hit the ground running in the offseason.  

On what he is looking for and expecting from the young players as the season comes to an end…

RickWe want to see how they compete, prepare and go about their business.  Even how they fare against adversity, because sometimes you learn even more about a person’s makeup when they struggle.  This last road trip and the remainder of the schedule has had some meaningful games for our opponents (playoff contenders) and by playing our young guys in these games against good competition we hope to see them prepare themselves to play in meaningful games for us in the not too distant future.  

On being competitive…

RickThe Boston Red Sox are the most recent example of a team and model of going from worst to first in the standings.  The core of pitching we have along with some of our young players give us what we believe will be one of those shorter paths to getting back to the competitiveness we expect and where we want to be in the standings.

On the futures of Robin Ventura and Paul Konerko…

Rick: Robin is already signed for next year so there’s really nothing to discuss along those lines.  With Konerko, we’ve said this since Spring Training that similar to the last two times where he’s entered the final year of his contract, we will sit down together after the season ends, (when) he knows what he wants to do and we will have a conversation, in private, about the future and how everyone fits.  

On the development of the farm system this season…

RickWe are real pleased with the young pitching.  Erik Johnson, (Jake) Petricka and (Daniel) Webb have had nice seasons.  Marcus Semien had a real good year.  Micah Johnson led the minor leagues in stolen bases, so he’s another player that had a good year.  We entered the season knowing we had a fair amount of outfield depth and good pitching depth as well.  We’ve seen some of those pitchers take the next step which we had hoped, however maybe not the outfielders as much as some infielders, who have stepped forward this year.    

On what has set the 2013 White Sox backward and what needs to improve in 2014…

RickUnfortunately, we have a number of areas that we need to upgrade.  Being at the bottom of the league in runs scored, obviously the offense is something at the top of the list.  Also how we performed defensively and on the base paths have been well below our expectations and well below acceptable.  We have a fair amount of work to do and we realize that.  With the way the season has gone we’ve given ourselves some extra time to prepare for what we want to do.  We were able to take care of some of that at the trade deadline and hopefully come October and November we can continue on that path.  Free agency, trades and the farm system are all parts of that.

On the way he views the farm system in regards to how Kenny Williams may have…

Rick: The farm system has two major purposes: One, providing impact talent for Chicago and two, providing trade assets to acquire impact players for Chicago.  I don’t think that’s any different than any other general manager views their farm system.    

On the experience of this season as a whole…

RickI’m no different from any fan or anybody in the front office or locker room that has suffered through a season that has been gut-wrenching.  It has been very difficult.  I try to look at in perspective that what we have in front of us now is a tremendous opportunity.  We have a chance to address some of the issues we have and, frankly, we’re at an advantage in pitching as well as a bit of a blank slate in a lot of the areas we need to get better in.  I view it as a trying season but it also as an opportunity to get better in the near future.    

Assessing the catcher situation this season…

RickTyler’s (Flowers) surgery was about as minor as we expected.  It will take about 2-3 months to recover but it shouldn’t be a long-term issue for Tyler.  With any young catcher or any young player you are going to have ups and downs.  I would say with Tyler we probably haven’t seen enough to make a final determination if this is the type of player he is.  The injury probably factored in with some of his performance as the pain, which was manageable early, became greater late in the season before we shut him down.   Obviously, we haven’t hit as well and gotten the offensive production out of catcher that we’ve anticipated.  Josh (Phegley) or Tyler haven’t really approached their ceiling in terms of what we think they are capable of offensively.  The two of them, along with (Hector) Gimenez when he was here, deserve a fair amount of credit for how the pitching staff has preformed.  That’s a large part of the job that tends to get overlooked especially when a catcher isn’t hitting.  We are certainly pleased with the preparation and game planning.  That aspect has been solid, but there’s certainly room for improvement.  

Speaking of the Future, the 2014 Sox Schedule was Announced Today

We announced our 2014 regular-season schedule today, with Opening Day on Monday, March 31 vs. Minnesota at U.S. Cellular Field (3:10 p.m. CT).  The opener is part of a three-game series (with an off day on April 1) against the division-rival Twins.  The club opens the season at home for the second consecutive season and seventh time in the last 10 years.

Here’s the entire ’14 schedule (it’s still subject to change):

http://chicago.whitesox.mlb.com/schedule/index.jsp?c_id=cws#y=2014&m=3&calendar=DEFAULT

Barons Head to Southern League Championship Series

The Birmingham Barons, the White Sox Class AA affiliate, defeated the Tennessee Smokies, a Cubs affiliate, last night in the decisive Game 5 of the Southern League North Division playoffs. The Barons are now on their way to the league’s championship series against the Mobile BayBears, a Diamondbacks farm club. The best-of-five series begins tomorrow night at Hank Aaron Stadium in Mobile.

In last night’s Barons’ triumph, 2B Micah Johnson, 3B Cody Puckett, DH Brandon Jacobs and C Mike Blanke each collected a hit and RBI. SS Tyler Saladino had a pair of singles and CF Jared Mitchell doubled and scored twice. Nestor Molina got credit for the win and Cody Winiarski got the save.

Sox Broadcasters and the Ford C. Frick Award

White Sox broadcasters Hawk Harrelson, Steve Stone, Ed Farmer, Darrin Jackson and Hector Molina are all candidates for the 2012 Ford C. Frick Award. The five Sox announcers will be considered as part of the new “High Tide Era,” which will reflect broadcasting contributions made during the regional cable network era from 1980-present.

Play of the Day

The Sox chalked up their second win in a row last night and prevented Detroit starter Max Scherzer from winning his 20th game. Chris Sale was magnificent, shutting down the Tigers, 5-1, allowing the lone run on four hits and a walk with eight strikeouts in eight innings of work…Conor Gillaspie had a pair of doubles, Dayan Viciedo collected two singles and an RBI, Paul Konerko drove in a pair with a base hit and Josh Phegley singled in a run. 

Quote of the Day

@SouthSideSox on last night’s win:

“Enjoyable game. Probably one of the best this year.”

Tomorrow’s Schedule

White Sox vs. Tigers at U.S. Cellular Field (7:10 p.m., CT, CSN) in the finale of the three-game series. Starters: LHP Jose Quintana (7-6, 3.70) for the Sox, RHP Anibal Sanchez (13-7, 2.61) for Detroit.

Did You Know…

that with his eight strikeouts last night, increasing his season total to 207, Chris became the fastest pitcher in franchise history to 200 strikeouts in a season, joining Wilbur Wood and Gary Peters as the only lefties in Sox annals to record at least 200 strikeouts in a single-season? 

Photo of the Day

Sale: As good as it gets.

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Homecoming

Monday, September 9, 2013 

Today’s News

Tonight’s Game

White Sox vs. Tigers at U.S. Cellular Field (7:10 p.m., CT, CSN) in the opener of a three-game series and 10-game homestand. Starters: In a matchup of All-Stars, it will be LHP Chris Sale (10-12, 2.97) for the Sox, RHP Max Scherzer (19-2, 2.88) for Detroit. Sale and Scherzer rank in the Top 5 in the American League in ERA, strikeouts, opponents average, quality starts and strikeouts/9.0 innings.

Chris is 4-1 with a 3.15 ERA and 44 strikeouts over his last six starts. He is also 15-8 with a 2.43 ERA and 196 strikeouts at home since 2012. The ERA is the lowest home mark in the A.L. during that time period. And Sale is tied for first in the A.L. with a .199 opponents average at home and fifth with a 2.55 ERA this season.

Sox Starting Lineup: De Aza, CF; Beckham, 2B; Ramirez, SS; Dunn, DH; Konerko, 1B; Gillaspie, 3B; Viciedo, LF; Danks, RF; Phegley, C.

Home Cooking

White Sox pitchers rank among the A.L. home leaders in opponents average (3rd, .242) and ERA (4th, 3.66). Sox starters have a 3.50 home ERA and have limited opponents to a .232 average.

Play(s) of the Day

The Sox ended their difficult 10-game road trip in winning fashion yesterday with the 4-2 victory over the Orioles…Adam Dunn gave us a 4-1 lead in the fifth inning with a mammoth two-run homer, his 31st of the season and 437th of his career. It ties him with Jason Giambi for 40th all-time…Continuing his hot hitting, Dayan Viciedo singled, doubled and drove in a run, Alexei Ramirez and Conor Gillaspie each had a pair of hits and a run scored and Alejandro De Aza drove in a run with a single…Starter Andre Rienzo captured his second win of the season with a strong 6.2 innings pitched, allowing just one run, four hits and two walks with four strikeouts. Matt Lindstrom (0.1), Donnie Veal (0.1) and Nate Jones (0.2) pitched scoreless relief before Addison Reed survived a bases-loaded, no-out jam in the ninth to record his 37th save.

The Dunn homer (rumor has it that it’s still traveling): http://atmlb.com/1auM2y2

Quote of the Day

Robin being philosophical about the Sox losing streak, broken yesterday with the win:

“There is never a point where you feel good about it or accept it. So they hurt. Whenever you lose late it hurts worse, but there’s always another game the next day. So you have to put it behind you and be able to go and have effort and optimism and all that kind of stuff to play today. That’s what makes baseball hard. It’s every day, and it can be gut wrenching and hurt and all that stuff, but you have to put it behind you and play today.”

Tomorrow’s Schedule

White Sox vs. Tigers at U.S. Cellular Field (7:10 p.m., CT, WCIU). Starters: RHP Erik Johnson (0-1, 4.50) making his second career start for the Sox, RHP Rick Porcello (11-8, 4.76) for Detroit.

Did You Know…

…that Avi Garcia is out of the lineup for the second day in a row with a “tooth” issue? He had two teeth extracted today and it’s possible he’ll be back tomorrow.

Sox Note of Note

The Birmingham Barons, the Sox Class AA affiliate, and the Tennessee Smokies, the Cubs affiliate, with two wins apiece in the best-of-five Southern League North Division playoffs, play for the title tonight in Tennessee. The Smokies evened the series yesterday with a 10-7 victory. Despite the defeat, the Barons had some outstanding offensive performances. Centerfielder Jared Mitchell went 2-4 with a two-run homer, second baseman Micah Johnson went 2-3 with a double and a run scored and shortstop Tyler Saladino went 2-4 and scored a run.

The Barons are looking to go to the league championship game for the first time since 2002.

Photo of the Day

Andre getting well-deserved congratulations from his teammates after his solid performance.

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