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Next Stop: Spring Training

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February 1, 2016

Final Day Review

May Day

Former White Sox All-Star Carlos May broke in with the Sox in 1968 and enjoyed a fine 10-year career, nine with the Sox. In 2016, Jacob May, Carlos’ great-nephew (and grandson of his brother and former major-league star Lee May) is a top outfield prospect in the Sox organization.

It was a special sight to see both Carlos and Jacob conducting a kids clinic and having so much fun yesterday at SoxFest (see three photos below).

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Farm Report

Assistant General Manager Buddy Bell, Director of Player Development Nick Capra and Director of Amateur Scouting Nick Hostetler were center stage yesterday in a seminar focused on the Sox minor-league system. MLB.com’s Phil Rogers was the moderator. It was noted that it’s going to be an important year for the Sox with two first round picks–10 and 28–in a pool filled with talented college position players, high school position players and high school pitchers.

Capra told the large audience that the farm system is getting more depth and the position players will be stronger, especially at shortstop, second base and centerfield. He pointed specifically to how No. 1 prospect Tim Anderson has developed at a very fast pace.

The group was asked about how they feel when a draft choice they are high on is included in a trade to help the major-league club. Hostetler answered: “When you take a player you envision him playing in Chicago, we want that guy to play in Chicago. But it is exciting turning a draft pick into a big-league player. You still root for the individual player, but you want your team to win.”

We also learned something about Corey Zangari, who was selected because of rave reviews from a couple of Sox scouts. According to the Sox he’s a tremendous human being who knows how to play baseball. He’s outgoing and has leadership skills. A first baseman, he has power and as he gets more experienced both his batting average and power numbers will go up. Hitting coach Gary Ward and Jim Thome helped him make adjustments.

Hostetler certainly opened up eyes with his assessment of 2015 No. 1 pick Carson Fulmer. Beginning by saying the Sox drafted the best college pitcher two years in a row (Carlos Rodon was selected the year before), Nick explained, “I’ve never scouted a kid with this makeup. He’s the kind of kid I’d want my daughter to marry off the field and pitch Game 7 of the World Series on the field.”

The group was asked about players to watch in 2016. Capra offered outfielder Adam Engel, a good defender and a good baserunner who has learned how to hit and was the MVP of the Arizona Fall League. “He’s a grinder.”

Training Room

Head Athletic Trainer Herm Schneider and Director of Conditioning Allen Thomas talked about rehab procedure and the importance of nutrition and conditioning. Ed Farmer, who moderated the seminar, put it best: “Herm gets ’em well, Allen gets ’em stronger.”

In terms of diet, it was made clear that the Sox can control what goes on in the clubhouse, but it’s up to the players. Herm said, “We give them the best options and let them make the final decision. Ultimately they’re accountable.” Herm said a nutritionist is set to come aboard to complement what he and Allen are doing to serve the best food possible.

Both Herm and Allen acknowledged how technology has drastically changed their jobs. Thomas talked about the fact there wasn’t even a conditioning person years ago and the trainer did it all. Schneider pointed out all the treatments that are available from a full X-ray unit on site to an MRI to computerized tracking to the closer oversight of prescription drugs and drug tests.

During the offseason, both Schneider and Thomas monitor the players as to their individual rehab, things they have to work on, etc. Allen emphasized that resting and getting away from baseball a bit after the long season is imperative.

The session ended with Sox execs Scott Reifert and Brooks Boyer coming up on stage and presenting MLB Long and Meritorius Service awards to both Farmer and Schneider.

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Sox Style

Former White Sox players Farmer, Harold Baines, Carlos May, Tom Paciorek and Mike Squires talked about the various uniforms the Sox have worn and some events that happened in those uniforms in the seminar, Sox Style: A Look Back at Sox Uniforms and the Men Who Wore Them. It was moderated by Connor McKnight. This session was especially appropriate in that the Sox have more uniforms than any other team in baseball.

The session had to be one of the most fun of the weekend with Paciorek’s hilarious brand of baseball humor and great stories from everyone. So, what are their favorite uniforms?

Tom: “My favorite was the red pinstripes.”

Harold: “You always like your first uniform…and it was the most comfortable” (the blue and white collared version).

Mike agreed with Harold: “They were comfortable, you didn’t have to tuck in the jersey.”

Carlos: “The red pinstripes, love those uniforms.”

Ed pointed to the blue with red trim road version that complemented the red pinstripes: “That’s a good looking uniform.”

Squires pretty much summed up the issue: “It’s a major league uniform, who cares what you’re wearing.”

Amen.

From the Mound

Pitching was the name of the game in the session that brought pitching coach Don Cooper, starter Erik Johnson and reliever Nate Jones together with new TV voice Jason Benetti moderating.

The session was titled “Chess Game on the Mound,” but Coop said it’s more like a seek and destroy game. “We’re looking to attack and tap into the pitcher’s strengths, hit the glove game. If you’re ahead in the count, your pitching life will be most successful. Whether a starter or reliever, always attack, be confident and aggressive. The approach never changes.”

Erik, who had a bounce back year in 2015, talked about what he has learned to be successful. “Be consistent, have a day-to-day routine with non-negotiable things that make you the same guy all the time. I think the biggest thing coming to the big leagues is to be yourself. Getting better each day is what everyone is looking for in this organization.”

Nate talked about as a reliever he trusts his catcher. “He’s a big part of my plan. He’s gone over the report and seen the hitters throughout the game.” Jones also said something very telling. He says that before the game he watches video of his strikeouts. He says, “It gives me confidence.”

Johnson sort of summed up the life of a pitcher: “You get guys out, they also get you.”

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Prospecting

Benetti also hosted the final seminar on Sunday, “Down on the Farm,” featuring prospects Eddy Alvarez, Anderson and Fulmer (pictured, in order, above).

Alvarez has a fascinating story. A 2014 Olympic silver medalist in short track speedskating, Eddy has now turned his attention to baseball and spent last year at both Kannapolis and Winston-Salem. “I prepared three and a half years for one race. You bring it all together–intensity, pressure, anxiety–for one time.”

Some interesting tidbits about Eddy: He owes everything to his parents, his brother Nick played in the Dodgers organization, former Sox pitcher Carlos Castillo took him under his wing after the Olympics and he’s very superstitious. “I always put on my left cleat first.” When the Miami native was asked about playing in the cold in Chicago, Alvarez replied: “I’ve spent most of my life on ice.” Eddy also said Ozzie Smith was his idol growing up and he hopes to do a back-flip in a major-league game. “If the opportunity comes, you might see one.”

There’s arguably no one in the Sox system that fans are looking forward to seeing in Chicago than No. 1 prospect Anderson.

Here’s a glimpse of who he is:

–“I get to the field early. I want to be the first guy there and do what I can to prepare for the game.”

–Preparation? “Keep it simple. I listen to music, mostly rap, take ground balls and BP.”

–“I love to hit.”

–On the competition among his teammates: “We’re brothers, we’re there for each other. We help each other improve.”

–On changing positions: “I’m here to prove I can be a shortstop.”

–The first autograph he signed: “Someone sent it to my college, I signed and sent it back. So cool.”

Fulmer, who was a star on the Vanderbilt team that won last year’s College World Series, talked about the experience:

“There’s nothing like it. You become brothers. You see that grow and come together. That’s why I play, I try to be a good teammate with my best friends. It was something special.”

His goal in spring training?

“You have to work hard, prepare yourself, soak up as much information as possible in big-league camp. We’re all excited to be around the Sales and Rodons…so excited to experience that.”

Here’s Alvarez on Fulmer. They were teammates last year: “He’s the most intense, motivating pitcher I’ve worked with. He generates so much power from his legs. He’s so intense it makes you hold your breath.”

A bit of irony. Carson and Sale are from the same hometown of Lakeland, Florida. “We recently played golf, went to dinner and telling me things to expect. He’s so down to earth and I’m so thankful to have a relationship with him.”

Photos of the Day

A SoxFest Day 3 gallery: Jose Abreu and a young fan separated at birth?…Sox World Champion Willie HarrisJason Benetti and Tyler Saladino greet a group of fans…a Melky selfie…and who wouldn’t want a wake up call from Ron Kittle?

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Day 3

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Sunday, January 31, 2016
 
Final Day Activities

Autographs
 
Stage 1 – Salon D – sponsored by WGN-TV
9:00 a.m. – Tom Paciorek & Mike Squires – First 175 Autographs
11:00 a.m. – Carson Fulmer & Nate Jones – First 175 Autographs
1:00 p.m. – Carlos May & Jacob May – First 175 Autographs

Stage 2 – Salon C – sponsored by Comcast SportsNet
9:00 a.m. – Alex Avila & Erik Johnson – First 125 Autographs
11:00 a.m. – Carl Everett & Willie Harris – First 250 Autographs
1:30 p.m. – Jose Contreras – First 250 Autographs

Stage 3 – Salon C – sponsored by Miller Lite
9:00 a.m. – Avisail Garcia – First 250 Autographs
11:00 a.m. – Chet Lemon – First 250 Autographs
1:30 p.m. – Zach Putnam & Daniel Webb – First 250 Autographs

Stage 4 – Salon C
9:00 a.m. – Melky Cabrera – First 250 Autographs
11:00 a.m. – Jose Abreu – PRIVATE SESSION PREMIUM UPGRADE
1:00 p.m. – Adam Engel, Ron Kittle & Trey Michalczewski – First 250 Autographs

Stage 5 – Salon B – sponsored by Hilton Chicago
9:00 a.m. – Chris Sale – First 100 Autographs
10:30 a.m. – Harold Baines & Kirk McCaskill – First 125 Autographs
12:00 p.m. – Eddy Alvarez & Tim Anderson – First 125 Autographs
 
Photos
 
Photo Stage 1 – Salon D – sponsored by Beggars Pizza
9:30 a.m. – Nate Jones – First 125 Photos
11:00 a.m. – Avisail Garcia – First 125 Photos
12:30 p.m. – Tyler Saladino – First 100 Photos
1:30 p.m. – Kirk McCaskill – First 100 Photos

Photo Stage 2 – Salon B
9:30 a.m. – Willie Harris with the 2005 World Series Trophy – First 125 Photos
11:00 a.m. – Jose Contreras with the 2005 World Series Trophy – First 125 Photos
1:00 p.m. – Tom Paciorek – First 100 Photos
2:00 p.m. – Carl Everett with the 2005 World Series Trophy – First 125 Photos
 
Kids Only (ages 3-14)
Autographs – Salon A – sponsored by Comcast SportsNet
11:00 a.m. – Robin Ventura – First 100 Autographs
12:00 p.m. – Don Cooper & Todd Steverson – First 100 Autographs
1:30 p.m. – Tyler Saladino – First 100 Autographs

Photos – Salon A – sponsored by Comcast SportsNet
10:00 a.m. – Jose Abreu – First 100 Photos

Little Sluggers Field – Salon A
9:45 a.m. – Stretching with Southpaw
10:00 a.m. – Robin Says with Robin Ventura
11:00 a.m. – Fielding Clinic with Carlos May & Jacob May
12:00 p.m. – Hitting Clinic with Ron Kittle
1:00 p.m. – Pitching Clinic with Carson Fulmer & Zach Putnam
2:00 p.m. – Conditoning Clinic with Allen Thomas
 
Seminars
 
Continental Ballroom
10:00 – 10:45 a.m. – The White Sox Farm System – Phil Rogers with Buddy Bell, Nick Capra & Nick Hostetler
11:00 – 11:45 a.m. – The Training Room: Keeping World Class Athletes in the Game – Ed Farmer with Herm Schneider & Allen Thomas
12:00 – 12:45 p.m. – Sox Style: A Look Back at White Sox Uniforms and the Men Who Wore Them – Connor McKnight with Harold Baines, Ed Farmer, Carlos May & Tom Paciorek
1:00 – 1:45 p.m. – Chess Game on the Mound – Jason Benetti with Don Cooper, Erik Johnson, Nate Jones & Dioner Navarro
2:00 – 2:45 p.m. – Down on the Farm – Jason Benetti with Eddy Alvarez, Tim Anderson & Carson Fulmer
 
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Day 2 Review
 
Kids Only Press Conference
One of the highlights of this year’s SoxFest was yesterday’s Kids Only Press Conference which saw youngsters from the age of five and up enjoy the unique opportunity to pose questions to three of their Sox heroes–Chris SaleJose Abreu and Adam Eaton. WMAQ’s Zoraida Sambolin served as both the moderator and interpreter for Jose.
 
So, what did we learn from the kids’ questions? You might be surprised at all the interesting nuggets that came out of the session.
 
We learned the following about Sale…
 
* The day that Chris was drafted by the Sox he was excited because it was his dream to pitch in the major leagues. He was surrounded by family and friends–and food.
 
* Sale’s greatest influence was his Dad, who had him playing baseball when he was practically in diapers and built a mound in the backyard.
 
* Sale talked about setting the franchise record for single-season strikeouts in 2015. He said he’s not big on stats, but it was exciting to go through the entire process and to see how electric the ballpark was. Chris said whenever something monumental like that happens, he goes back to when he was a kid and dreaming about making it to the majors. He said he appreciates it, but there’s more work for him to do.
 
* Answering a question from a youngster who changed his number from 22 to Sale’s 49 after seeing him pitch, Chris told him not to throw the curve ball at a young age even though his friends are doing it. He told the young man to just have fun because it’s “the funnest time you’ll have in baseball.”
 
* When asked what he’d be doing if he weren’t playing baseball, Sale said “I kind of threw my eggs in one basket, but I would be a one-man traveling Karaoke singer.”
 
* Chris admitted that he gets nervous before every game. He said it’s like right before you get married or take a test. You’re prepared, but always a little bit nervous.
 
* Sale’s favorite pitcher growing up was Randy Johnson. “I learned a lot from him, one pitch into a game or 120 pitches into the game, he had no intention of letting anything bad happen. Whether things were good, bad or it was Game 7, he was the same guy.”
 
* In addressing the Sox’ need to add to their current roster, Chris said that too much attention is paid to names and stats. It’s more important, he said, to have good team chemistry and putting the right pieces together with everyone having the same goal in mind.
 

* Chris said that pitching and defense wins games and if the Sox score three runs when he’s on the mound “we should win. If not, it’s my fault.”

* Sale told the youngsters that he gets excited, never scared, about facing the best players. “My gears get going facing (Miguel) Cabrera and (Mike) Trout. You find out what you’re made of. You can’t be the best without beating the best.”
 
* “When we win,” Chris said. “The music is playing, we’re having a good time in the clubhouse, joking, we usually have a ceremony. When we lose not so much.”
 
Here is the inside info we learned about Abreu…
 
* Jose’s greatest influence is his mother. When he was playing ball in Cuba, he asked his Mom to choose his number. That’s why he wears No. 79.
 
* Abreu talked emotionally about how difficult it was leaving Cuba and his son, but he left to play in the United States to make his mother proud. He also spoke about how grateful he is to MLB and the White Sox for helping him make the trip to Cuba during the offseason and to reunite with his son. Now back in the States, he admitted that when little ones are around he misses his son more.
 
* Asked what he would be doing if he wasn’t playing baseball, Jose said he would “attempt” to play soccer and even though he’s not that good, he would try.
 
* What was Abreu’s greatest home run? He answered, “the birth of my son.”
 
* Talking about the 2016 White Sox, Jose said he’s very confident. He didn’t promise the playoffs, but vowed to work hard to give the fans what they deserve.
 
* Abreu was asked who his best friend is on the team. Even though Eaton playfully raised his hand, Jose said, “all the guys are my best friends.”
 
* In answer to a youngster’s question about winning and losing, Abreu explained, “When we win we’re happy, when we lose it’s a very sad situation and we go home upset.”
 
Eaton? Let’s look at what we found out…
 
* Adam put together a neighborhood baseball league for a short time with his friends. His Mom even sang the National Anthem before the games.
 
* Eaton said that the greatest influence in his life has been his father, who knew he was going to be short and taught him to play to compensate for the lack of height with speed, etc. “Credit goes to him.” Players that have inspired Adam are former major leaguer Kenny Lofton, who once played for the Sox, and Hall of Fame legend Yogi Berra. Lofton because he played for the Indians, the Ohio native’s favorite team growing up and the fact he wore chains and cool Nikes. Yogi because of his small physical stature and his 10 World Series rings–the ultimate winner.
 
* Adam on the 2016 Sox: “I like the roster we have. We’ve got tremendous baseball players and better people. If we jell as a team we’ll be just fine. It boils down to getting the job done.”
 
* Like Sale and Abreu, Adam was asked what he would be doing if he wasn’t playing baseball. “I would love to be an occupational therapist, working with people who are learning motor skills.”
 
* Adam’s favorite retired players are Lofton and Jim Thome.
 
* Eaton on playing video games:  “I played Sega Starfox in high school and today I like Call of Duty.
 
* Adam’s favorite hobby is fishing. “It’s nice to be able to throw a line in, relax and unwind.”
 
* A youngster asked Eaton who would he most like to high-five, Adam replied, “You.” And then he called the youngster to the stage.
 
* Adam: “Winning is like celebrating everyone’s birthday.”
 
* Eaton playfully talking about new teammate Todd Frazier: “He’s definitely an East Coast guy, I feel like I’m talking to the Mafia.”
 
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World Series Memories
 
Sitting behind the 2005 World Series Trophy, White Sox World Champions Willie HarrisJose Contreras and Carl Everett talked about the Sox championship season and took questions from the fans. Sox public address announcer Gene Honda served as the moderator.
 
Everett talked about how the ’05 team was underrated and as a group stuck together no matter what. He added that no one person ran the clubhouse–“we were all in it for each other.” 
 
Contreras, who said Orlando “El Duque” Hernandez was his closest confidant, pointed out that the biggest reason the Sox won is that they were a close, united team. 
 
Harris, who said he learned a lot from Everett and went to him if he had issues, said Carl added a fire to the team. Willie also added that manager Ozzie Guillen kept the team loose and pointed out that everybody on the team was influential, but Ozzie drove the truck well. When the Sox were losing and heads were down, the skipper did a lot.
 
Harris, a reserve player who entered the game in the eighth inning as a pinch-hitter, singled and scored the winning (and only) run in the decisive Game 4 of the 2005 Series, talked about the moment.
 
“I was sitting on the bench for eight innings, watching the ballgame. Ozzie said, ‘Willie, you ready?’ and I told him, ‘You want to win, put Willie in.’ I had no idea what would happen. I was scared as hell. I knew I wasn’t going to give my bat away, I’m going to give it all I got. I also got the support from everybody, everybody on the roster was as important as Paul Konerko and Mark Buehrle. You’re more comfortable because you know they’re there for you.”
 
Well, the rest is history. Willie scored on Jermaine Dye‘s base hit to give the Sox a 1-0 victory and a World Series title. 
 
Harris is back in the organization as a minor-league hitting coach.
 
Family Feud White Sox Style: Old School vs. New School
 
The White Sox played Family Feud during one of the seminars yesterday, pitting the Old School Sox (Tom PaciorekRon KittleMike Squires and Darrin Jackson and a fan chosen from the audience) vs. the New School Sox (represented by Dan JenningsZach PutnamAvi Garcia, a fan and WGN’s Pat Tomasulo). Chicago comedian Pat McGann played the host role.
 
For the record, the New School Sox were the winners.
 
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Memories of 1993
 
Bo Jackson and righty pitcher Kirk McCaskill presided over a seminar with WGN’s Rich King and talked primarily about the 1993 American League West Champions. 
 
Bo said 1993 was “a fun year with everybody enjoying baseball and the South Side was happy.” Kirk said the Sox were a great team and thought they were going to beat the Blue Jays, but it never happened. McCaskill also talked about all the characters on that team and that for five years after he left he still heard teammate Ozzie’s voice.
 
Kirk, who went on record saying that “Bo is the greatest athlete who ever walked on this planet” also talked about his own ping-pong prowess, having the distinction of beating both Bo and Michael Jordan. McCaskill also was surprised by someone in the audience who asked about that talent. As it turned out that questioner was none other than Robin Ventura, who was Kirk’s teammate with the Sox.
 
Bo also addressed his rehab after a hip replacement:
 
“Rehabbing wasn’t hard. I pride myself on being mentally tough. It bothered me the first two months and it was annoying to listen to people saying I’m done. But I’ve always had the mindset that I never allow someone to tell me what I can’t or can’t do. Getting back to playing was easy. I just wasn’t the fastest guy on the field anymore.”
 
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Frank-ly Speaking
 
Hall of Famer Frank Thomas, the greatest hitter in Sox franchise history, answered questions at a seminar with Hawk Harrelson moderating. 
 
What did we hear from Frank?
 
* Harrelson said Thomas could do everything on a baseball field except throw. “Know your role,” Big Hurt replied with a laugh. “I was here to hit.”
 
* A native of Columbus, Georgia, Frank said he was an Atlanta Braves and rooted for Brave players Dale Murphy, who stood out to him, Bob Horner and of course Hank Aaron. He was also a Dave Winfield fan. 
 
*The toughest pitchers The Big Hurt faced in his career were Jeff NelsonRandy Johnson when he was at the top of his game and Pedro Martinez.
 
* His thoughts on being a Hall of Famer: “It’s a humbling feeling. It’s the first thing people say when they see you: ‘You’re a Hall of Famer.’
 
It’s important to note that Frank is now a special assistant to the corporate side of the Sox business operation.
 
SoxFest Day 2 Photos of the Day
 
It was another day of fun activity at SoxFest. Here’s a sampling: Fun and games at Southpaw’s Suite; prospect Eddy Alvarez and Tyler Saladino conduct a kids clinic; a young fan takes a selfie with John DanksSox fans look for bargains at the Garage Sale; and never estimate the loyalty of White Sox fans as this bride and groom make a stop on their way to their honeymoon.
 
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Day 2

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January 30, 2016

Today’s Activities

Autographs

Stage 1 – Salon D – sponsored by WGN-TV
9:00 a.m. – Jose Contreras, Carl Everett & Willie Harris – First 175 Autographs
10:30 a.m. – Ed Farmer, Darrin Jackson & Steve Stone – First 100 Autographs
11:30 a.m. – Chet Lemon & Mike Squires – First 175 Autographs
1:30 p.m. – Carson Fulmer, Jacob May & Trey Michalczewski – First 175 Autographs
3:00 p.m. – Ron Kittle & Tom Paciorek – First 175 Autographs

Stage 2 – Salon C – sponsored by Comcast SportsNet
9:00 a.m. – Adam Eaton & Avisail Garcia – First 250 Autographs
11:00 a.m. – Dan Jennings & Nate Jones – First 250 Autographs
1:00 p.m. – Alex Avila & Dioner Navarro – First 250 Autographs

Stage 3 – Salon C – sponsored by Miller Lite
9:00 a.m. – Bo Jackson * – First 250 Autographs
*While Bo is not able to sign memorabilia, he will sign SoxFest photos of fans posed with him or a complimentary 8″x10″ action photo provided by the White Sox.
11:00 a.m. – Kirk McCaskill & Robin Ventura – First 250 Autographs
1:00 p.m. – Jose Abreu – First 250 Autographs

Stage 4 – Salon C
9:00 a.m. – Chris Sale – First 250 Autographs
11:00 a.m. – Erik Johnson & Tyler Saladino – First 250 Autographs
1:00 p.m. – Frank Thomas – First 250 Autographs

Stage 5 – Salon B – sponsored by Hilton Chicago
9:00 a.m. – Zach Putnam & Daniel Webb – First 125 Autographs
11:30 a.m. – Eddy Alvarez, Tim Anderson & Adam Engel – First 125 Autographs
1:00 p.m. – Todd Steverson – First 125 Autographs
2:30 p.m. – Melky Cabrera – First 125 Autographs

Photos

Photo Stage 1 – Salon D – sponsored by Beggars Pizza
10:00 a.m. – John Danks – First 125 Photos
11:30 a.m. – Melky Cabrera – First 125 Photos
1:00 p.m. – Adam Eaton – First 125 Photos
3:00 p.m. – Chet Lemon & Steve Stone – First 125 Photos

Photo Stage 2 – Salon B
9:30 a.m. – Harold Baines – First 100 Photos
10:30 a.m. – Adam Engel & Carson Fulmer – First 100 Photos
11:30 a.m. – Avisail Garcia & Dioner Navarro – First 100 Photos
1:00 p.m. – Carl Everett with the 2005 World Series Trophy – First 125 Photos
2:30 p.m. – Dan Jennings – First 125 Photos

(Kids Only: ages 3-14)
Autographs – Salon A – sponsored by Comcast SportsNet
9:30 a.m. – John Danks – First 50 Autographs
1:00 p.m. – Ken Harrelson – First 100 Autographs
2:00 p.m. – Harold Baines – First 100 Autographs

Photos – Salon A – sponsored by Comcast SportsNet
12:00 p.m. – Daniel Webb – First 100 Photos

Little Sluggers Field – Salon A
10:00 a.m. – Fielding Clinic with Eddy Alvarez & Tyler Saladino
12:00 p.m. – Hitting Clinic with Todd Steverson
12:45 p.m. – Mazda Pride Crew Kids Relay Race with Alex Avila
1:30 p.m. – Clinic with Nick Capra & Nick Hostetler

Kids Only Press Conference – Continental Ballroom
11:00 – 11:45 a.m. – Zoraida Sambolin with Jose Abreu, Adam Eaton & Chris Sale

Seminars

Continental Ballroom
10:00 – 10:45 a.m. – Your 2016 White Sox – Ken Harrelson with Rick Hahn and Robin Ventura
11:00 – 11:45 a.m. – Kids Only Press Conference – Zoraida Sambolin with Jose Abreu, Adam Eaton & Chris Sale
12:00 – 12:45 p.m. – 2005 World Series Memories – Gene Honda with Jose Contreras, Carl Everett & Willie Harris
1:00 – 1:45 p.m. – Old School vs. New School Family Feud – Pat McGann with Avisail Garcia, Dan Jennings, Zach Putnam & Pat Tomasulo vs. Darrin Jackson, Ron Kittle, Tom Paciorek & Mike Squires
2:00 – 2:45 p.m. – A Look Back: ’93 Memories – Rich King with Bo Jackson & Kirk McCaskill
3:00 – 3:45 p.m. – Beat Writers’ Banter – Darrin Jackson with Scot Gregor, Dan Hayes, Colleen Kane, Scott Merkin & Daryl Van Schouwen

Waldorf Room – 3rd Level
3:00 – 3:45 p.m. – A Conversation with Hall of Famer Frank Thomas – Ken Harrelson with Frank Thomas – PRIVATE SESSION PREMIUM UPGRADE

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Day 1 Review
Opening Ceremonies
Sox public address announcer Gene Honda served as the MC, Southpaw kicked off the festivities with a dramatic run up the runway to the stage and 40 members of the Sox were introduced to an estimated 1100 tried and true White Sox fans in the Opening Ceremonies at SoxFest yesterday afternoon in the International Ballroom at the Hilton Chicago.
Sox past, present and future were center stage and were introduced and greeted with enthusiastic applause. The group included former Sox stars Ron Kittle, Chet Lemon, Kirk McCaskill, Harold Baines, Bo Jackson, Jose Contreras, Carl Everett, Willie Harris and Carlton Fisk, GM Rick Hahn, amateur scouting director Nick Hostetler, radio broadcasters Ed Farmer and Darrin Jackson, new TV voice Jason Benetti, TV broadcasters Steve Stone and Hawk Harrelson, pitching coach Don Cooper, hitting coach Todd Steverson, manager Robin Ventura, top Sox prospects Tim Anderson, Eddy Alvarez, Adam Engel, Carson Fulmer, Jacob May and Trey Michalczewski plus 2016 White Sox Alex Avila, Melky Cabrera, John Danks, Adam Eaton, Avi Garcia, Dan Jennings, Erik Johnson, Nate Jones, Dioner Navarro, Zach Putnam, Tyler Saladino, Daniel Webb, Todd Frazier, Jose Abreu and Chris Sale.
Jose received a framing commemorating his accomplishment in 2015 of being only the second player in big-league history (Albert Pujols) to hit 30 homers and drive in 100 runs in his first two seasons. Sale was presented with a ring in honor of setting the franchise’s all-time single-season strikeout mark.

More O.C. highlights
The Sox will be celebrating the 25th anniversary of the ballpark this season and during the opening ceremonies a video was shown of highlights through the years, leading up to 2016.
This season’s retro racers were also revealed, representing four of the finest Sox players who have performed during this era–Ozzie Guillen, Jack McDowell, Magglio Ordonez and Hall of Famer Frank Thomas.
The club also paid tribute to two Sox legends who passed away in 2015–Minnie Minoso and Billy Pierce–and acknowledged the deaths of former Sox Jim McAnany, Walt “No Neck” Williams and Jim O’Toole.
Closing the out the ceremonies was the introduction of adorable five-year-old Sox fan Drew Duszynski (shown below with Saladino and Garcia) who recently had a kidney transplant from of all people, a Cubs fan.

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Photos Aplenty

There were certainly myriad photo ops yesterday among the media availability, opening ceremonies photo and autograph sessions and othe activities. Here are a few below, in order: Frazier enjoying his time with a young fan, Sale chatting with the media, a group of Sox assembling for a short break after meeting with reporters, prospects Anderson, May and Michalczewski hamming it up for the camera, Lemon talking about his days with the White Sox, the retro racers guarding the memorabilia case and a nice tribute to Minoso and Pierce.

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SoxFest Day 1 Quotes of the Day

–Hahn on the ’16 Sox:
“We are pleased with where the team sits. A year ago there was a fair amount of optimism and frankly we’re a stronger team…and we’re not done. We’ve been extremely aggressive and creative and doing everything we can to win.”
–Ventura on avoiding another slow start by perhaps making some changes in Spring Training:
“Maybe you can have guys play longer in games, having them play six innings instead of three and have the lineup play together more.”
–Lemon on beginning his career with the Sox:
“I had the opportunity to play in the big leagues at 20-years-old with the Sox, playing with vets like Ralph Garr and Richie Zisk. I realized I’d have to work really hard to play in the majors.”
–Fisk, when asked to compare Sale to pitchers in his era and to predict the lefty’s future:
“Back in the day, nobody threw like Chris Sale with that angle–he just shoots the ball up there. He’s not going to have better stuff, but his experience should allow him to learn more about himself and the process of what it takes to get someone out.”
–Frazier on batting in the same lineup as Abreu:
“I’m looking forward to protecting the big guy.”

Photo of the Day
The #SoxSocial Lounge is definitely the place to be.
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Sox Annual Family Reunion Gets Underway Today

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Friday, January 29, 2016

Today’s News

Everything You Need to Know About SoxFest 2016

http://m.mlb.com/cws/promo/soxfestschedule

A SoxFest Press Conference For Kids Only

http://m.whitesox.mlb.com/news/article/162588188/chicagos-soxfest-to-have-family-friendly-fun

Faces of the Franchise

More than 40 White Sox, including front office execs, manager Robin Ventura, coaches and former, current and future Sox players will be front and center at SoxFest beginning today at the Hilton Chicago.

Among those players scheduled to appear (and pictured below in order) are newly-acquired All-Star Todd Frazier, ace Chris Sale, premier slugger Jose Abreu, top prospect Tim Anderson and Sox legends Bo Jackson, Chet Lemon and Hall of Famer Frank Thomas. A full list of the scheduled attendees are included in the schedule above.

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Quote of the Day

Sox Director of Public Relations Sheena Quinn on SoxFest:

We are celebrating the 25th anniversary of the ballpark, so we wanted to make sure that we brought in guys from all generations and eras of White Sox baseball. It’s going to be a nice range of people…(Attendance) has definitely exceeded what we thought our goals would be. We are really excited about the number of people.

Sox Spring Training Update

–Non-Roster invitees to Spring Training:

http://m.whitesox.mlb.com/news/article/162883412

–New Sox Spring Training uniforms:

http://chicago.suntimes.com/sports/7/71/1285575/white-sox-new-spring-training-uniforms-hit

–Check out the Sox Spring Training broadcast schedule shown below. Jason Benetti and Steve Stone will be behind the mic.

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RIP No Neck

–Outfielder Walt “No Neck” Williams, a fan favorite on the South Side from 1967-1972 during a 10-year major-league career, passed away January 23 at the age of 72.

http://mobile.nytimes.com/2016/01/28/sports/baseball/walt-williams-72-player-known-as-no-neck.html

Photo of the Day

And the fun begins…

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Better Days Ahead

Sunday, October 4, 2015

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Today’s News

Season’s End and Looking Forward to 2016

This season certainly didn’t turn out the way we had all hoped, but it still had its exciting moments. Among them were the Chris Sale strikeout records, the abundance of Jose Abreu homers and RBI, the consistency of Jose Quintana, the outstanding second-half efforts of Adam Eaton and Melky Cabrera, the good bullpen work, the emergence of youngsters Carlos Rodon, Trayce Thompson, Tyler Saladino and Carlos Sanchez, plus the second most walk-off wins in baseball (12) this season including the one last night.

What this tells us is that along with some fine-tuning, there’s more than enough to look forward to in 2016.

This Afternoon’s Game

White Sox vs. Tigers at U.S. Cellular Field (2:10 p.m. CT, CSN) as the Sox hope to sweep the three-game series and end the season on a winning note. Probable Starters: RHP Frankie Montas (0-1, 5.73) for the Sox, LHP Daniel Norris (2-2, 3.88) for Detroit.

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Last Night’s Highlights

J.B. Shuck‘s one-out, pinch-hit double in the bottom of the ninth drove in Avi Garcia to tie the game at 3-3 and Leury Garcia, who came in as a pinch-runner for Cabrera in the eighth, knocked in Shuck with a single through the infield to give the Sox a dramatic 4-3 walk-off victory…Eaton collected a pair of hits and scored his 98th run of the season, giving him the chance today to be the first Sox player since Jim Thome (108) and Jermaine Dye (103) in 2006 to score 100 or more runs in a season. Heading into the final game of 2015, Adam also owns an nine-game hitting streak (.400) and has reached base safely in 22 consecutive contests…Cabrera and Alexei Ramirez each delivered an RBI and A. Garcia collected a pair of hits and scored the tying run in the ninth after drawing a walk…Erik Johnson bounced back nicely to have an outstanding year at Class AAA Charlotte–where he was the International League’s Pitcher of the Year–and with the Sox. He went 6.1 innings last night, allowing two runs and five hits, and in six starts in Chicago he finished with a 3-1 record and a 3.34 ERA…Nate Jones, who got one out in the top of the ninth, registered his second win.

Here are the ninth-inning dramatics–Shuck’s game-tying double and L. Garcia’s game-winning hit:

http://mlb.mlb.com/r/video?content_id=517126383

http://mlb.mlb.com/r/video?content_id=517151683

Quote of the Day

GM Rick Hahn, speaking to the media Friday, on the 2015 season and beyond:

“It’s important at the end that we put ourselves in the best position going forward, and as we sit here today, we feel like we are in that position. As we sit here going forward, we feel confident that it’s the right bunch to put us back where we want to be.”

Soto Prevails Over Flowers in Foot Race

Geovany Soto outlasted Tyler Flowers in a catchers-only sprint before last night’s game. Full disclosure: Flowers will undergo arthroscopic surgery within the next few days.

The result apparently surprised skipper Robin Ventura: “I would have taken Flowers.”

[tweet https://twitter.com/whitesox/status/650400498693091329]

SoxFest

Look forward to seeing you at SoxFest, January 29-31, 2016 at the Hilton Chicago. Check whitesox.com for details.

Opening Day 2016

The Sox open the 2016 season in Oakland against the A’s on Monday, April 4. The home opener is on Friday, April 8 vs. the Indians at U.S. Cellular Field–see you then and there.

The Blog

With the regular season ending, this is our last daily post. Keep in mind that we’ll be in touch during what promises to be an active offseason.

2005 Flashback

Celebrating the 10th anniversary of the Sox’ championship season…

The White Sox captured their first World Series title since 1917 with a 1-0 victory over the Astros at Minute Maid Park in Houston. Jermaine Dye, the eventual MVP of the series, drove in the only run with an eighth-inning single off Brad Lidge that scored Willie Harris. Harris led off the eighth with a single, moved to second on a sacrifice bunt by Scott Podsednik and to third on Carl Everett‘s ground out. Bobby Jenks pitched a scoreless ninth inning for the save with help from Juan Uribe, who dove into the stands down the left-field line to record the second out of the final frame before retring Orlando Palmeiro on a grounder to end the game. Starters Freddy Garcia for the Sox and Brandon Backe for the Astros each tossed seven scoreless innings. Houston, in fact, was held without a run in the final 15 innings of the World Series. The White Sox went 11-1 in the postseason, tied for the second-best playoff record since 1969 (minimum seven games).

Photo/Video of the Day

[tweet https://twitter.com/whitesox/status/650697601533087746]

Move Aside Ed Walsh, Chris Sale is the New Sox Strikeout King

Saturday, October 3, 2015

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Today’s News

Sale’s Force

With his first-inning strikeout of the Tigers’ Nick Castellanos last night, Chris Sale tied Hall of Famer Ed Walsh‘s franchise single-season strikeout record of 269 set 107 years ago in 1908. The next inning, Sale became the all-time club leader by striking out James McCann for his 270th K (click on link below).

Sale, who is also leading all AL pitchers in Ks and is second to only the Dodgers’ Clayton Kershaw in the majors, finished with seven strikeouts in his last start of the season. The All-Star lefty gave up one run, five hits and a walk in seven-plus innings for his 13th win of the year. The new Sox mark for single-season strikeouts now stands at 274.

Chris ended the year with 24 games in which he struck out seven or more batters as well as 23 games in which he threw a quality start. He also joined Hall of Famer Pedro Martinez as the only two pitchers to strike out 10-plus in eight straight appearances.

Sale shared his feelings after the game:

“It’s awesome, something that hasn’t set in yet but I know what it means, I know what it is. I’m very thankful for it. Looking over to the dugout and seeing everybody standing and the crowd was going crazy so that took a little to soak in and appreciate that moment. It comes and goes real quick but I’ll never forget that.”

http://mlb.mlb.com/r/video?content_id=513996483

“You Have to Have Fun in This Game”

Just before the record was broken, Sale threw an eephus pitch to McCann and explained it was in honor of teammate Adam LaRoche‘s dad, Dave, who was known for the pitch during his 14-year big-league career.

“Well, the creator of it is in the building. You have to have fun in this game. Talking to the whole LaRoche squad about it is something that came to my mind. I thought if there’s nobody on base and I get a guy with two strikes, let’s flip one in there just for fun. The worst thing that happens is I give up a homer. And I did that before so I got that out of the way.”

Enjoy

http://mlb.mlb.com/r/video?content_id=515020583

More Friday Night Highlights

Adam Eaton‘s two-run double in the third inning drove in what proved to be all the Sox needed in last night’s 2-1 victory in the series opener (click on top link below)…Matt Albers, with his 20th consecutive scoreless appearance (22.1 IP), came on in relief of Sale with the one-run lead, two on and no outs in the eighth, and got out of the jam…David Robertson pitched a perfect ninth for his 34th save…And take a look at J.B. Shuck‘s spectacular leaping catch with two outs in the seventh (click on bottom link).

http://www.mlb.com/r/video?content_id=514072883

http://mlb.mlb.com/r/video?content_id=514279883

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Who Was Ed Walsh?

The following bio of Walsh (pictured above) was written by Stuart Schimler for the Society for American Baseball Research (SABR). Walsh pitched for the Sox for 13 seasons and was inducted into the Hall in 1946. He finished his career with 195 wins and a minuscule 1.82 ERA.

“From 1907 to 1912, “Big Ed” Walsh tested a pitcher’s endurance like no pitcher has since. During that stretch the spitballing right-hander led the American League in innings pitched four times, often by staggeringly large margins. He hurled a total of 2,248 innings, 300 more than another other pitcher in baseball. He started 18 more games than any other pitcher, and led the American League during that stretch in games finished and saves, though the latter statistic would not be tracked for another 60 years. His finest season came in 1908, when Walsh became the last pitcher in baseball history to win 40 games and hurled an incredible 464 innings, 73.1 more than any other pitcher in baseball…”

Read more:  http://sabr.org/bioproj/person/3a0e7935

Tonight’s Game

White Sox vs. Tigers at U.S. Cellular Field (6:10 p.m. CT, WGN) in the middle game of the season-ending three-game series. Probable Starters: RHP Erik Johnson (3-1, 3.45) for the Sox, RHP Justin Verlander (5-8, 3.39) for Detroit.

Sox Notes of Note

GM Rick Hahn announced yesterday that Robin Ventura will be back in 2016. Bench coach Mark Parent will not return and Harold Baines, at his request, will leave as assistant hitting coach but will stay in the organization in more of an ambassador role. The rest of the coaching staff will remain intact.

Quotes of the Day

Hahn: 

“Robin’s strength is communication and the environment he creates to allow players to maximize their abilities.” He also pointed to Ventura’s open-mindedness, intelligence, creativity and knowing his players and their capabilities.”

“We have been able to add some pieces that we feel will be able to contribute to a championship club.” 

Tomorrow’s Schedule

White Sox vs. Tigers at U.S. Cellular Field (2:10 CT. CSN) in the season finale. Probable Starters: Rookie RHP Frankie Montas (0-1, 5.73) for the Sox, LHP Daniel Norris (2-1, 3.88) for Detroit.

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Fan Appreciation Day Tomorrow

http://m.whitesox.mlb.com/news/article/150795162?partnerId=as_cws_20150922_52836486&adbid=646365547857186816&adbpl=tw&adbpr=53197137

2005 Flashback

Celebrating the 10th anniversary of the Sox’ championship season…

The White Sox advanced to their first World Series since 1959, defeating the Los Angeles Angels, 4-1, on the road in the American League Championship Series. Jose Contreras tossed the fourth consecutive complete game by a Sox hurler, retiring his final 15 batters. The Angels led 3-2, when Joe Crede hit a leadoff homer in the seventh off Kelvin Escobar. After Aaron Rowand walked and A.J. Pierzynski reached first on Escobar’s error in the eighth, Crede’s slow roller up the middle plated Rowand with the go-ahead run. Paul Konerko who was named the series MVP, added an RBi double in the ninth and Rowand capped the night with a sacrifice fly. The Sox won the sixth AL pennant in franchise history. On to the Series.

Photo of the Day

The authors of the four straight complete games in the 2005 ALCS and their pitching coach: Jon Garland, Mark Buehrle, Contreras, coach Don Cooper and Freddy Garcia.

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Sale Eyes Long-Standing Sox Strikeout Mark, Abreu Reaches Milestone

Friday, October 2, 2015

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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 season-ending three-game series. Probable Starters: LHP Chris Sale (12-11, 3.48) for the Sox, RHP Alfredo Simon (13-11, 5.18) for Detroit.

Sale is scheduled to make his 31st and final start of the season,16th at home and third against Detroit. Chris needs three strikeouts tonight to break Hall of Famer Ed Walsh‘s single-season club record of 269 set in 1908. The Sox All-Star lefty has tossed 201.2 innings, compared to Walsh’s 464. If Sale breaks the mark, he would join Tampa Bay’s Chris Archer as the only active pitchers to own a club strikeout record.

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Last Night’s Highlights

With his two-run single in the seventh inning (click on link below) of last night’s loss, Jose Abreu joined Albert Pujols as the only players in major-league history with 30-plus homers and 100-plus RBI in each of their first two seasons. Jose now stands at 30 and 101…With a double and walk, Adam Eaton extended his on-base streak to 20 games (.354)…With a pair of hits (and an RBI), Trayce Thompson is batting .419 over his last 10 home games.

http://www.mlb.com/r/video?content_id=513300283

And here’s more of Abreu’s impressive production over his first two seasons:

http://www.mlb.com/r/video?content_id=513550383

Quote of the Day

Robin on Abreu’s milestone:

“It’s a big accomplishment for him. All the guys are proud of him. It’s special for a guy to be able to do that…there’s not a big list. This game’s been around a long time and for somebody to accomplish that just shows to his character and dedication and him coming to the park everyday as a pro.” 

New Video Boards to be Added for the 2016 Season

At the start of next season, three new video boards will be installed at U.S. Cellular Field. Check out the first renderings below.

Sox SVP of Sales and Marketing Brooks Boyer on the new video boards:

“Come Opening Day next year, it’s going to look a lot different. Obviously, this adds a lot of flexibility to our game presentation for our sponsors and to ultimately create a better entertainment  experience for our fans.”

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Tomorrow’s Schedule

White Sox vs. Tigers at U.S. Cellular Field (6:10 p.m. CT, WGN) in the middle game of the three-game series. Probable Starters: RHP Erik Johnson (3-1, 3.45) for the Sox, RHP Justin Verlander (5-8, 3.39) for Detroit.

2005 Flashback

Celebrating the 10th anniversary of the Sox’ championship season…

In Game 3 of the American League Division Series at Fenway Park in Boston, the White Sox completed the ALDS sweep with a 5-3 win. Paul Konerko broke a 2-2 tie with a two-run homer in the sixth inning. Manny Ramirez led off Boston’s sixth with a solo homer, his second of the game, and the Red Sox then loaded the bases with no outs against Damaso Marte. However, Orlando “El Duque” Hernandez came in and worked out of the jam by retiring Jason Varitek and Tony Graffanino on popups before striking out Johnny Damon to end the threat. In all, El Duque tossed three scoreless innings. The Sox added an insurance run in the ninth inning on a suicide squeeze bunt by Juan Uribe and rookie Bobby Jenks pitched a 1-2-3 ninth for his second save of the series. On to the American League Championship Series.

Photo/Video of the Day

“Stretch Sale” could be yours tomorrow.

http://www.mlb.com/r/video?content_id=485803483

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Abreu ThisClose to Rare Baseball Milestone

Thursday, October 1, 2015

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Today’s News

Tonight’s Game

White Sox vs. Royals at U.S. Cellular Field (7:10 p.m. CT, CSN) in the rubber match of the three-game series. Probable Starters: LHP John Danks (7-14, 4.53) for the Sox, RHP Kris Medlen (5-2, 4.30) for Kansas City.

Last Night’s Highlights

By virtue of belting his 30th home run and driving in his 99th run of the season (click on top link below), Sox slugger Jose Abreu is one ribbie away from a rare baseball milestone. He is thisclose to joining Albert Pujols as the only players in history to record 30-plus home runs and 100-plus RBI in each of their first two major-league seasons. Abreu, Pujols and Ryan Braun are now the only three with 30-plus roundtrippers in each of their first two years.

In his last start of 2015, Jose Quintana had another strong outing. He gave up three runs in nine innings and left with the score tied 3-3 at the end of regulation, but the Sox dropped a 5-3 decision in 10 innings. Click on the bottom link to hear Robin Ventura talk about about Q’s performance…Tyler Flowers went a career-tying 4-4 with a run batted in, Adam Eaton added a hit and an RBI and Melky Cabrera, Trayce Thompson and Mike Olt each had a pair of base hits.

http://www.mlb.com/r/video?content_id=511112483

http://mlb.mlb.com/r/video?content_id=511556383

 

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Quote of the Day

Abreuthrough interpreter Billy Russo, on his goal of learning more English (via Scott Merkin, whitesox.com):

“I know if I can learn a little bit more of the language, I can express myself in a better way with my teammates and my coaches. It’s going to help our relationship. It is good, but I think it could be much better. That’s the way I think I can express my leadership. I’m not wanting  just to be a leader as an example. I’ll try to say something…that’s my goal.”

Sox Notes of Note

Quintana set a career high in innings pitched in a single season with 206.1. He has reached the 200 IP mark for the third consecutive season, becoming the first White Sox pitcher to reach 200-plus IP, 30-plus starts and 160-plus strikeouts in three straight seasons since Javier Vazquez accomplished the feat in 2006-2008. He also went 3-0 with a 2.58 ERA over his last eight games (seven quality)…Eaton is among the league leaders with 95 runs scored. He is trying to become the first Sox player to score 100 runs since Jermaine Dye (103) and Jim Thome (108) in 2006. The last Sox leadoff hitter to score 100-plus runs in a season was Ray Durham in 2000 (121)…Micah Johnson is set to undergo arthroscopic surgery on his left knee today.

Top 30 White Sox Prospects

http://m.mlb.com/prospects/2015?list=cws

Tomorrow’s Schedule

White Sox vs. Tigers at U.S. Cellular Field (7:10 p.m. CT, CSN+) in the opener of a season-ending three-game series. Probable Starters: LHP Chris Sale (12-11, 3.48) for the Sox, RHP Alfredo Simon (13-11, 5.18) for Detroit.

2005 Flashback

Celebrating the 10th anniversary of the Sox’ championship season…

In Game 162 on October 2 in Cleveland, the newly crowned American League Central-champion White Sox concluded the regular season at 99-63 with a 3-1 victory over the Indians. Jermaine Dye belted his 31st homer, a solo shot, and Paul Konerko and Joe Crede each drove in a run. Starter Brandon McCarthy got credit for his third win and Orlando “El Duque” Hernandez recorded his first save. On to the playoffs.

Photo of the Day

Just four more days of BP…

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A Quality Start, a Homer, a Catch and a Big Sox Win

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

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Today’s News

White Sox Top Royals for Fourth Straight Time

Jeff Samardzija tossed seven strong innings for his 11th win (click on top link below), Adam Eaton went deep for his 14th homer, a two-run shot (click on bottom link), and Trayce Thompson made an “unbelievable” catch in left field as the Sox defeated the Royals, 4-2, in the series opener for their fourth consecutive triumph over the AL Central champions…Jose Abreu (No. 98) and Alexei Ramirez each delivered an RBI and Eaton, Abreu, Ramirez and Carlos Sanchez each collected a pair of hits. Reliever Matt Albers extended his scoreless streak to 19 appearances (21.1 IP) and closer David Robertson pitched a perfect ninth for his 33rd save.

http://www.mlb.com/r/video?content_id=508800083

http://mlb.mlb.com/r/video?content_id=508484583

Trayce’s Catch

In the second inning, Thompson was robbed of a home run by KC’s Lorenzo Cain at the centerfield wall. The Sox rookie, however, got back at the Royals in the seventh inning with a spectacular diving catch that prevented the tying run from scoring.

How great was it? Just ask Shark:

“Unbelievable. Unbelievable. I’ve seen some good catches before, been part of a couple here and there, and that was one of the coolest ones I’ve seen in a while. He closed a big gap on the ball and sold out for it.”

Here it is:

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Tonight’s Game

White Sox vs. Royals at U.S. Cellular Field (7:10 p.m. CT, CSN) in the middle game of the three-game series. Probable Starters: LHP Jose Quintana (9-10, 3.38) for the Sox, RHP Edinson Volquez (13-9, 3.65) for Kansas City.

Q is scheduled to make his 32nd and final start of the season, 16th at home and sixth vs. KC. He earned the win in his last start vs. the Royals on September 5, tossing seven scoreless innings with five strikeouts in a 6-1 Sox victory.

Quote of the Day

White Sox pitching coach Don Cooper on Quintana (via Scott Merkin, whitesox.com):

“There is nothing that I don’t like about Jose Quintana. He’s the model of consistency, he’s the model of hard work. He’s the model of preparation. When you say somebody is coachable, he’s that guy.

“I can remember the first day we had him and everything that’s gone on with him since then and how he doesn’t forget anything, how he adds it in. He is going to get every ounce out of his ability. He has not taken a day off since we’ve gotten him here.”

A Gold Glove for Birmingham’s Joey DeMichele

Class AA Birmingham Joey DeMichele (pictured below) has been awarded a minor-league Gold Glove award for his play at second base. He registered a .985 fielding percentage in 665 total chances and was involved in 91 double plays.

DeMichele, 24, was selected out of Arizona State in the third round in 2012. This was his first full season in Class AA.

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No. 1 Pick Fulmer at Sox Instructional League

http://mlb.com/r/article?ymd=20150928&content_id=152040770&vkey=news_cws&c_id=cws

Tomorrow’s Schedule

White Sox vs. Royals at U.S. Cellular Field (7:10 p.m. CT, CSN) in the finale of the three-game series. Probable Starters: LHP John Danks (7-14, 4.53) for the Sox, RHP Kris Medlen (5-2, 4.30) for KC.

Photo of the Day

Young Sox fans gather around their newest hero, Trayce Nikolas Thompson–or as some of us call him, “TNT.”

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The Home Stretch

Monday, September 28, 2015

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Today’s News

Tuesday’s Schedule

After today’s off day, it will be the White Sox vs. Royals at U.S. Cellular Field (7:10 p.m. CT, WPWR) in the opener of a three-game series and six-game homestand that will continue with a season-ending series against the Tigers. Probable Starters: RHP Jeff Samardzija (10-13, 5.04) for the Sox, RHP Johnny Cueto (3-6, 4.99) for KC.

Samardzija will make his 32nd start of the season, 16th at home and fourth against the Royals. Shark earned the win in his last start in the first game of the September 21 doubleheader at Detroit and allowed a career-low one hit over nine scoreless innings.

Quote of the Day

Robin on how Adam Eaton has toned down his aggressive play to avoid injury and stay in the lineup (via Dan Hayes, CSNChicago.com):

“He’s been able to throttle it back at times better than he did last year because it was all out or not at all. He’s kind of found that sweet spot being able to know when to turn it on and there’s time he can slow it down a little and not be able to have to use everything to get to be able to play the game…There are smarter ways to do it and I think he’s progressed and learned how to do it.”

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25 Years Ago Today…

Frank Thomas hit the last White Sox home run in Old Comiskey Park. It came off Hall of Famer Randy Johnson (via @ckamka).

Wednesday’s Schedule

White Sox vs. Royals at U.S. Cellular Field (7:10 p.m. CT, CSN) in the second game of the three-game series. Probable Starters: LHP Jose Quintana (9-10, 3.38) for the Sox, RHP Edinson Volquez (13-9, 3.65) for Kansas City.

Fan Appreciation Day on Sunday

http://m.whitesox.mlb.com/news/article/150795162?partnerId=as_cws_20150922_52836486&adbid=646365547857186816&adbpl=tw&adbpr=53197137

2005 Flashback

Celebrating the 10th anniversary of the Sox’ championship season…

In Game 159 on September 29 at Comerica Park in Detroit, the White Sox clinched the American League Central title with a 4-2 victory over the Tigers for their 96th win. Freddy Garcia tossed seven strong innings and Bobby Jenks recorded his fourth save. Paul Konerko belted a solo homer, his 40th of the season, and Carl Everett went 3-4 with two RBI.

Photo/Video of the Day

Avi Garcia blasted his 13th homer of the season Sunday in the loss to the Yankees.

http://mlb.mlb.com/r/video?content_id=505275883

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