Results tagged ‘ Hall of Fame ’

Sox Right On “Q” For Another Series Win

Sunday, August 3, 2014

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Today’s News

This Afternoon’s Game

White Sox vs. Twins at U.S. Cellular Field (1:10 p.m., CT, CSN) in the rubber match of the three-game series. Starters: LHP Jose Quintana (6-7, 3.15) for the Sox, RHP Kyle Gibson (9-8, 3.94) for Minnesota.

“Q” is set to make his 23rd start of the season and 10th at home. Seven of his last eight starts have been quality and he is 3-0 with a 1.84 ERA and 51 Ks during that span.

Sox Starting Lineup: Eaton CF, Beckham 2B, Abreu DH, Gillaspie 3B, Ramirez SS, Konerko 1B, Viciedo RF, De Aza LF, Flowers C.

Plays of the Day

Adam Eaton doubled three times, singled in a pair of runs and upped his batting average to .306 in last night’s loss to the Twins (click on top link below)…Gordon Beckham singled, doubled and drove in two runs and Alexei Ramirez smashed his 11th homer, a solo shot (click on bottom link below), singled and also drove in two…Jose Abreu walked twice, once intentionally, but his 21-game hitting streak was snapped…Scott Carroll rebounded from a tough start and went seven innings, getting a no decision.

http://m.mlb.com/video/v35043817

http://atmlb.com/1uaJdIs      

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Sox Notes of Note

Per @ckamka, the White Sox are hitting .347/.386/.515 as a team over their last nine games, with 118 hits (13.1 per game)…Eaton has now now hit safely in nine straight games, hitting .488 during that time. He also recorded his fifth consecutive multi-hit game and he’s reached base in 19 games in a row, hitting .444 in that span. And he collected three doubles in a game for the first time in his career and had four hits in a game for the second time this season…Ramirez has hit safely in 12 of his last 14 games, hitting .333 with three homers and 13 RBI…Alejandro De Aza has registered three consecutive multi-hit games for the first time this season. He’s 6-10 in those games…playing for Class AAA Charlotte on a rehab assignment, Avi Garcia went 3-5 in the Knights’ win over Gwinnett last night and is 5-8 in his first two games…on Friday, Jordan Danks set the all-time Charlotte record for hits (440) with a home run.

Abreu Making an Impact–Off the Field

http://www.chicagotribune.com/sports/baseball/whitesox/chi-jose-abreu-gives-back-20140802-story.html

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Thome Feted With Statue

I was honored to be in Cleveland yesterday when the Indians unveiled a statue of Jim Thome, who spent 2006-2009 with the Sox and currently serves as a special assistant to GM Rick Hahn. Jim broke in with the Tribe in 1991 and spent 13 of his 22 major-league seasons with them.

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Quotes of the Day

Twins’ skipper Ron Gardenhire on pitching around Abreu (via @scottmerkin):

“Well, we’re thinking about trying to slip in a few more defenders in the outfield.”

Tomorrow’s Schedule

White Sox vs. Rangers at U.S. Cellular Field (7:10 p.m., CT, CSN) in the opener of a three-game series. Starters: RHP Hector Noesi (5-8, 5.21) for the Sox, RHP Nick Martinez (1-7, 5.08) for Texas.

Photo of the Day

The Big Hurt‘s Hall of Fame plaque took center stage before last night’s game.

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Catch a Tiger by the Tail

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

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Today’s News

Tonight’s Game

White Sox vs. Tigers at Comerica Park, Detroit (6:08 p.m., CT, CSN) as the Sox try to gain some ground in the AL Central in the opener of a three-game series with the division leaders. Starters: LHP Jose Quintana (5-7, 3.15) for the Sox, RHP Anibal Sanchez (7-4, 3.45) for the Tigers.

“Q” will be making his 22nd start of the season and 13th on the road. Six of his last seven starts have been quality and he is 2-0 with a 1.70 ERA, 49 strikeouts and a .188 opponents average during that period. He had a no decision in his last start on July 23 vs. the Royals, allowing just one run on seven hits while striking out three in seven innings. 

Sox Starting Lineup: Eaton CF, Ramirez SS, Abreu 1B, Dunn DH, Viciedo RF, Gillaspie 3B, Beckham 2B, De Aza LF, Flowers C.

Tomorrow is Today

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Sox Notes of Note

Over the span of his hitting streak, Jose Abreu has the following slash line: .345/.389/.648 with 11 doubles, 11 home runs and 28 RBI…Tyler Flowers began wearing glasses on July 9. Since then he’s .395/.439/.658 with seven doubles, a homer and seven RBI…Sox starters own a 3.11 ERA since June 23, the third-best mark in the American League and fifth-best in baseball…Class AAA Charlotte first baseman Andy Wilkins has been named the International League Batter of the Week for the second straight time. He is hitting .483 with eight doubles, 12 homers. 30 RBI and 24 runs scored in his last 21 games. Wilkins leads the IL in homers (26), RBI (70), extra-base hits (53), total bases (217) and home run ratio (14.69) and ranks second in slugging percentage (.568)…I was in Cooperstown Sunday and didn’t post Adrian Nieto‘s first major-league homer. He deserves a mention here, so here it is:

http://m.mlb.com/video/v34859563

Quote of the Day

During the Legends of the Game Roundtable in Cooperstown yesterday, Frank Thomas was asked who among the Hall of Famers he most enjoyed spending time with over Induction Weekend. He answered without hesitation, “Hank Aaron,” and added that Aaron was Frank Sr.’s favorite player. “My Dad used to say to me, ‘You’re pretty good, but you’re no Hank Aaron.'”

Tomorrow’s Schedule

White Sox vs. Tigers at Comerica Park (6:08 p.m., CT, CSN). Starters: RHP Hector Noesi (5-6, 4.37) for the Sox, RHP Max Scherzer (12-3, 3.37) for Detroit.

Photo of the Day

One of our special guests in Cooperstown for Induction Weekend was Jeff Torborg, who was the manager of the White Sox when The Big Hurt made his debut.

Baseball fans will remember that Torborg was a fine major league catcher who caught two no-hitters (Nolan Ryan’s first of seven and the one by Bill Singer) and a perfect game (Sandy Koufax). Thanks to diehard Sox fan Jacqueline Buzard, here’s a photo of the catcher’s mitt Torborg used in all three games. It is prominently displayed in the Hall of Fame Museum.

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A Day For The Ages

Sunday, July 27, 2014

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Induction Sunday

Cooperstown, NY — After months of anticipation, the annual Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony will begin today at 12:30 p.m., CT, at the Clark Sports Center, which is located just a mile south of the Hall.

During the ceremony, we will hear from our Sox-connected inductees Frank Thomas and Tony LaRussa, pitching greats and former Braves teammates Greg Maddux and Tom Glavine and elite managers Bobby Cox and Joe Torre as they are officially are inducted into baseball’s shrine. The newest inductees will be welcomed by 55 of the 66 living Hall of Famers, who have made the trip here to be part of the festivities.

Frank and Tony: The Day Before

The six inductees spoke to the media yesterday in advance of today’s ceremony. Here’s a sampling of comments from Frank and Tony.

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Frank-ly Speaking

On the Hall of Fame experience as a whole:

“It’s really very stressful. A lot goes into it. I’m overjoyed, but the nerves are there. It’s just a different feeling. This is bigger than any ball game that I’ve every played in. Tomorrow will be magical. Just seeing the stage today, the field and thinking about all those people out there, it will really be special.”

On thinking about entering the Hall during his playing days:

“You never think about the Hall of Fame. It’s something you can’t control. As a player you just go out and play ball.”

On his speech:

“I’ve been doing a lot of traveling with my TV work and each night when I get back to my hotel room I add a few lines and add some names. It’ll be from the heart, giving credit to the people who got me here.”

On his hitting style:

“I was a hitter, not just a home run hitter. I was about scoring runs, driving in runs. I knew I had to do something to help the team every night. (Sox hitting coach) Walt Hriniak had a whole lot to do with my approach in my first eight years in Chicago and me being here in Cooperstown. It was all about discipline. You knew you had to work hard every day.”

On his Dad, Frank Sr., who has passed away:

My Dad was my man. He saw something in me and it was push, push, push, all the time–he got me off that couch. Without him I wouldn’t be here. I keep thinking what a big smile he would have if he were still here. He’d be running around with No. 35 on his back, that’s the kind of person he was.”

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The World According to Tony

On the role of a manager:

“I’ve been with coaches in other sports and we talk about how our first responsibility is to create a frame of mind for the players. Once you have their attention you can go from there. I think I had a feel for it, but I got better and better over the years.”

On his time with the Sox, notably 1983 when the club won the AL West by 20 games. It was also the team’s first playoff appearance since the AL pennant-winning year of 1959.

“1983 was a magical year. We had big personalities, great leaders like Bull (Greg Luzinski) and Kooz (Jerry Koosman) and a great coaching staff.”

On Frank:

“He was the type of hitter that you had to take out of the game. He hit for power, average, hit to all fields. He was a marked man.”

On Harold Baines and the Hall of Fame:

“My heart aches for him. If he had only been healthy enough to get 3,000 hits.”

On his managerial career with the Sox, A’s and Cardinals:

“Thirty years and three great places. How lucky I’ve been.”

Yesterday’s Award Presentations

Yesterday afternoon the Hall of Fame Awards presentation took place at Doubleday Field, for years the site of exhibition games between American and National League teams. Author Roger Angell received the J.G. Taylor Spink Award for meritorious contributions to baseball writing. Former player and broadcaster Joe Garagiola, who was not in attendance, won the Hall’s Buck O’Neil Lifetime Achievement Award and Texas Rangers’ broadcaster Eric Nadel was honored with the Hall of Fame’s Ford C. Frick Award for major contributions to baseball broadcasting.

The Parade of Legends

With thousands of fans lining the streets cheering them on, the Hall of Famers rode down Main Street last evening in trucks en route to the Museum. Here’s Frank and his wife Megan waving to the crowd.

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Main Street

Cooperstown’s main drag was again all abuzz yesterday with activity on another bright, sunny day. In addition to the thriving businesses we mentioned yesterday that were teeming with fans, other establishments enjoying the presence of the baseball faithful the past few days are the Heroes of Baseball Wax Museum, Mickey’s Place (as in Hall of Famer Mantle), Shoeless Joe’s and the Batter’s Up Restaurant. Again, where else can you find these places?

Among the former players signing yesterday were Pete RoseAndre DawsonMaury WillsDenny McLain, Bert Campaneris, Frank Howard, John RockerRyan Klesko and many of the players who signed earlier in the week that we mentioned yesterday.

Among the oddest sights yesterday on Main Street? Somebody I could swear was Babe Ruth and the craziest Harley you ever saw.

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A Hall of a Party

The White Sox hosted a party for Frank and Tony last night at Cooperstown’s Templeton Hall with friends and family celebrating the occasion. The Big Hurt took to the microphone upon his arrival and expressed what an honor it is to be entering the Hall. He also admitted his “knees will be knocking,” but is looking forward to the big day. Tony talked emotionally about his days with the Sox and led the crowd in singing “Na, Na, Hey, Hey, Goodbye.”

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A Sox Fan’s Delight

Museum exhibits I thought you’d like to see.

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And While We’re in Cooperstown…

The Sox won their third straight last night with a 7-0 whitewash of the Twins. We go for the sweep of the four-game series today. Chris Sale was in vintage form. He won his 10th game of the season against a single loss via a brilliant five-hit shutout, which included a dozen strikeouts over eight innings–and he lowered his ERA to a miniscule 1.88…Alexei Ramirez hit a two-run homer, Conor Gillaspie was 3-4 with a double two runs scored, Tyler Flowers singled and doubled and drove in a pair and Adam Eaton had two singles, two RBI and scored a run. Jose Abreu extended his hitting streak to 16 games with a ninth-inning single. He has now recorded a hit in 34 of his last 35 games.

Photos of the Day

I guess you could say it was SoxFest East yesterday on Main Street.

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White Sox All-Stars Ready to Shine in Tonight’s Midsummer Classic

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

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Today’s News

Star-Studded Sox

Our guys–Chris SaleAlexei Ramirez and Jose Abreu–met the media yesterday along with the other American and National League All-Stars in advance of tonight’s Midsummer Classic at Target Field in Minneapolis, which will be televised on FOX beginning at 6:30 p.m., CT.

Abreu on His Parents Attending the All-Star Game…

Listen to Jose talk about the excitement around his parents being in Minneapolis to see him play in the major leagues for the first time (with expert translation by my PR colleague Lou Hernandez).

Video: Jose Abreu on joy of parents seeing him in All Star Game

…And His Parents’ Joy in Their Own Words

http://www.csnchicago.com/white-sox/white-sox-jose-abreu-and-family-cant-wait-all-star-party

Here they are: Jose’s mom and dad, Jose and Daysi.

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White Sox a Major Player in MLB Cuban Pipeline

http://bleacherreport.com/articles/2125637-inside-mlbs-cuban-pipeline-its-high-risk-high-reward?utm_campaign=tsipad&utm_medium=referral&utm_source=teamstream

Quote of the Day

Reigning AL Cy Young Award winner Max Scherzer of the Tigers on Abreu, the MLB home-run leader at the break (via Dan Hayes, CSN Chicago):

“He’s a difference-maker. He’s such a quality at-bat. His power is unbelievable. He can take so many different pitches and just take you yard. You obviously respect what he can do. He’s changed the complexion of their lineup and allows some of their other players to do other things as well. When you have a guy like that in your lineup, anchoring it, in a way it’s kind of like what we have in Detroit with Miggy anchoring our lineup. He’s only getting better and unfortunately that’s a detriment to us.”

“Welcome to Cooperstown: Frank Thomas” Debuts Thursday

Comcast SportsNet Chicago will present a special one-hour documentary, “Welcome to Cooperstown: Frank Thomas,” a little more than a week before the Sox legend is inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame on Sunday, July 27. The special will be narrated by media personality and author Richard Roeper and will premiere Thursday at 6:30 p.m., CT, exclusively on CSN Chicago. The special will re-air at 10:00 p.m. the same night.

In addition, CSN Chicago currently has encore showings scheduled for Saturday, July 26 at 7:00 p.m., and on the day of the induction ceremony at 4:30 p.m.

“Welcome to Cooperstown: Frank Thomas” covers everything from the slugger’s childhood  as a three-sport star in Columbus, Georgia, to his historic, record-breaking career with the White Sox. The documentary will feature exclusive, candid interviews with those who played major roles in his life and career, photos and video including exclusive, behind-the-scenes access of when Thomas received the official phone call telling him he was elected as well as Thomas’ exclusive tour of the Hall of Fame with CSN Chicago’s White Sox Pre/Postgame Live host Chuck Garfien. 

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Photos of All-Stars and Abreu’s parents courtesy of Chuck Garfien.

 

 

 

Simply Brilliant

Friday, May 23, 2014

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Today’s News

Tonight’s Game 

White Sox vs. Yankees at U.S. Cellular Field (7:10 p.m., CT, CSN). Starters: RHP Hector Noesi (0-4, 7.31) for the Sox, RHP Hiroki Kuroda (3-3, 4.61) for New York. The Sox have won seven straight home games against the Yankees. 

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

 

Plays of the Day

Adam Eaton, Alejandro De Aza and Adam Dunn drove in the Sox runs in last night’s 3-2 win over the Yankees. But in the end it was all about Chris Sale. He was simply brilliant in his first game back from more than a month on the disabled list. In six innings of work the only blemish was a lone single and he struck out 10. He’s now 4-0 with a 1.89 ERA…Zach Putnam and Daniel Webb pitched perfect baseball in the seventh and eighth innings, respectively, and Ronald Belisario came on in the ninth and got credit for his second save.

 

For Sale

Chris is the second pitcher in the modern era (since 1900) to allow one hit with 10-plus strikeouts in consecutive starts. The Mets’ R.A. Dickey accomplished the feat in 2012. Last night’s performance was Sale’s 12th game of 10 strikeouts or more. He is now tied with Alex Fernandez for the fourth most in franchise history. It took Fernandez to accomplish the feat in 197 starts, Sale has done it in 64…he has yet to allow a hit to a left-handed hitter this season (0-23)…Sale is the first White Sox lefty starter to begin a season 4-0 since Mark Buehrle (5-0) in 2009…and as a result of his gem last night, he joins Gary Peters (1963) and Floyd Bannister (1987) as the only Sox pitchers since 1914 to have 10 Ks, no walks and no more than one hit allowed in a single game.

 

Former Teammates Reunited

Robin Ventura and Derek Jeter, who were Yankee teammates in 2002-03, greet each other warmly before last night’s game. The White Sox will honor the retiring Jeter on Sunday with a video and gifts. Fellow captain Paul Konerko will do the presenting on behalf of the Sox.

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And While Sale was Clicking in Chicago… 

High Class A Winston-Salem’s Francellis “Frank” Montas (pictured below)acquired by the White Sox from the Red Sox in last summer’s Jake Peavy trade, had a no-hitter into the seventh inning last night in the Dash’s 6-3 victory and series win over the Salem Red Sox.

Montas (2-0) was dominant throughout his start, striking out eight batters in his first six innings of work. Montas pitched eight innings, allowing one run, two hits and one walk while striking out 11.

As a result of his performance, he was named “Pitcher of the Day” today by Baseball America‘s Prospect Report.

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Swoopes as in Hoops

Hoops legend Sheryl Swoopes will throw out the ceremonial first pitch before tonight’s game.

 

Quotes of the Day

 Sale commenting on carrying a perfect game into the sixth inning while on a strict pitch count in his first start back from the DL: 

“I don’t think I’ve ever been more excited to give up a hit in my life. I knew I was done after that sixth, and Robin said the same thing. He goes, ‘You picked a bad night to do something like that.'”

 

Former MLB GM Jim Bowden, now with the MLB Radio Network, on Sale:

“He has to go into the category of Kershaw, Scherzer, Fernandez. When healthy he’s amazing.” 

 

Tomorrow’s Schedule 

White Sox vs. Yankees at U.S. Cellular Field (1:10 p.m., CT, CSN). Starters: LHP John Danks (3-4, 5.64) for the Sox, LHP Vidal Nuno (1-1, 5.82) for New York. And don’t forget, it’s Chris Sale bobblehead day.

 

Photo of the Day

Here’s how President Obama signed the guest book on his visit to the Baseball Hall of Fame yesterday.

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On to Chicago (With a Brief Stop in Birmingham)

Thursday, March 27, 2014

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Today’s News

The Game

At Mesa…in the Cactus League finale.

White Sox     3  8  0

Cubs             4  8  0

Plays of the Day

Adam Dunn and Alejandro De Aza hit back-to-back home runs in the ninth inning (click on link below for video of Dunn’s homer, his first of the spring)…Adam Eaton went 2-3 and finished Cactus League play with an outstanding .368 batting average. He also made a terrific diving catch in the fourth inning…Marcus Semien singled in a run in the eighth…Donnie VealDaniel Webb and Nate Jones each pitched a scoreless inning.

http://atmlb.com/1m8TX67

Sox Note of Note

For those of you who don’t recognize No. 4 in the above photo, that’s Hall of Fame shortstop Luke Appling, who played his entire 20-year career on the South Side from 1930-1950. He was a lifetime .310 hitter, who won two batting titles, was a seven-time All-Star and is one of nine Sox to have his number retired.

The 2014 White Sox Racers

From left to right: Darrin “DJ” JacksonEd “Farmio” FarmerSteve “Stoney” StoneKen “Hawk” Harrelson.

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The White Sox’ 12-Scoop Banana Split Sundae

Here is one of many local and national stories about the three-pound ice cream treat that is becoming a cause celebre:

http://espn.go.com/chicago/mlb/story/_/id/10676917/chicago-white-sox-offer-3-pound-sundae-helmet

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Quotes of the Day

John Danks on completing a successful spring with his victory over the Reds yesterday:

“Its been a lot better spring than the last couple of years. I’m feeling good where I’m at. Feeling good, ready to get the season started. I’ve told Coop I’m feeling strong enough and healthy enough to go out and throw 120 (pitches) and be a guy who has a chance to save the bullpen.”

Danks on Rule 5 selection Adrian Nieto making the Opening Day roster as the backup catcher.

“He’s a great kid, works hard and deserves it, really. He has caught me a lot this spring, and he does a great job.”

More Danks

John Danks has joined the new “Advisory Board” of the Taylor Hooton Foundation, which is made up exclusively of active players from throughout Major League Baseball. The Hooton Foundation is widely acknowledged as the leader in the advocacy against appearance and performance enhancing drug use by the youth of America.

Danks joins eight other charter members of the “Advisory Board,” which also includes Jay Bruce (Cincinnati Reds), David DeJesus (Tampa Bay Rays), Dillon Gee (New York Mets), Clayton Kershaw (Los Angeles Dodgers), Mark Melancon (Pittsburgh Pirates),  Max Scherzer (Detroit Tigers), C.J. Wilson (Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim) and Brad Ziegler (Arizona Diamondbacks).

As members of the “Advisory Board,” the players will participate in the THF’s educational activities in their local communities, record radio public-service announcements and provide their input on the most-effective ways to educate North America’s young people about the dangers of anabolic steroids and other appearance and performance enhancing drugs.

Tomorrow’s Schedule

White Sox vs. the Class AA Birmingham Barons at Birmingham’s sold-out Regions Field (6:00 p.m, CT). Sox starting pitching schedule: LHP Veal, LHP Scott Downs, RHP Matt Lindstrom, RHP Maikel Cleto, LHP David Purcey, RHP Zach Putnam.

Photo of the Day

Here’s newly-elected Hall of Famer Frank Thomas on the Fox Sports 1 set with former major leaguer Gabe Kapler and Charissa Thompson. The Big Hurt will serve as an analyst for the network this season.

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SoxFest Day 2

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January 25, 2014

Talk About Dedication

You can’t make this up. Every year a family of Sox fans from Nebraska–a Dad, daughter and son–fly in for SoxFest. This year, however, they went above and beyond. They got in line at 2:00 a.m. this morning to make sure they were among the first to get Bobby Jenks’ autograph. Here’s Bobby during today’s autograph session, which began at 9:00 a.m.

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A Must-See For Sox Fans

The SoxSocial Lounge is a “must” destination while at SoxFest. Even GM Rick Hahn got into spirit by playing a game of Heads Up with a Sox fan.

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Something For Everybody at SoxFest

Here’s a mini-tour of the Exhibitor Hall/Gift Shop/Garage Sale:

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Count Hawk In

It’s been many years now since Hawk Harrelson anointed Frank Thomas with the nickname, The Big Hurt, after witnessing Frank’s prodigious talents on a daily basis. You could say that Hawk will be coming full circle with his connection with the new Hall of Fame electee this Summer when Harrelson will likely be part of the Sox traveling party to Cooperstown to witness Hurt’s induction first-hand.

“I tried to be there for Cal Ripken, George Brett and Robin Yount, guys I really respected,” Hawk said at SoxFest. ‘But I think I’m going to make it this time.”

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SoxFest Notes of Note

During this morning’s seminar featuring Rick and Robin, a fan asked about newly acquired third baseman Matt Davidson. Robin gave an answer that pleased the packed ballroom: “Joe Crede is a good comparison. That’s exciting. (You’re impressed) by (Matt’s) sheer size and how the ball comes off his bat.”

The Cuban Connection seminar featured Sox icon Minnie Minoso and current Sox stars Alexei Ramirez, Dayan Viciedo and Jose Abreu. The fans showed their love for Minnie with a lengthy standing ovation and some heartfelt comments. Alexei made a point of thanking Minoso for paving the way for Cuban players to play in the major leagues…One fan certainly did his homework and wished Jose a Happy Birthday (this Wednesday). Abreu, who said he has high expectations and wants to be thought of as a player who leaves everything on the field to help his team win, was asked if he had a nickname. He said he’s known in Cuba as Pito. What about dealing with cold weather, Jose was asked. He said this is the third time he’s been to Chicago and it’s very different this time–referring to the frigid temperatures. “I’ll have to talk to my teammates to get mentally prepared for the cold,” he added.

Sox VP Buddy Bell, Director of Amateur Scouting Doug Laumann and Director of Player Development Nick Capra had some interesting insights in today’s From the Draft to the Big Leagues seminar…Laumann on the Sox having the third pick in this June’s amateur draft: “There’s a certain degree of pressure and a challenge to get an impact type of player. It allows us to narrow the field to five or six potential candidates. It’s a very important pick for us. We’d like to think we’ll get it right. We’ve already talked to four of six potential candidates already. Our philosophy is to take the most impactful player available”…Bell on Sox prospect Micah Johnson: He’s a real interesting kid–a very good baseball mind and a real catalyst. He has the best range of any second baseman I’ve ever seen, but he can play just about anywhere but shortstop. He’s a very good player”…Capra acknowledged that outfield prospect Trayce Thompson may have taken a step back offensively last season, but still has the potential to be a superstar because he does so many things.

Laurence Holmes sat down with with Matt Lindstrom, Adam Eaton and Erik Johnson in the Movies, Music and More! seminar. Hilarity ensued. Among the tidbits we learned: The two main things Eaton takes on the road are his wife and his iPad, his favorite movies are Tommy Boy and Happy Gilmore and the player in history he’d most like to room with is Yogi Berra–“or just spend 10 minutes with him”…Matt Lindstrom loves to play Zombies Xbox 360, Forrest Gump is his favorite movie and his celebrity crush is Kate Beckinsale because she looks like his wife…Movie-wise, Erik Johnson is partial to Indiana Jones and Star Wars and is a huge San Francisco 49ers fan. And according to Lindstrom, Chris Sale is by far the best video game player on the Sox and excels in everything he does. Perhaps the funniest line of the seminar came when Eaton was asked about his celebrity crush. He answered, “Paul Konerko.”

Two of the greatest lefthanded pitchers in Sox history, Billy Pierce and Gary Peters, were the focus of the final seminar of Day 2. Billy talked about getting his first glove and ball as a prize for getting his tonsils out and the day he met Babe Ruth and had him sign a baseball that he still holds dear…Peters recalled having lunch with his father before making a start against the Yankees on a Saturday. He asked his dad, an avid Yankee fan, who he would be rooting for. After hesitating a moment, the elder Peters said he’d root for his son, but the Yankees on Sunday.

Tomorrow’s Schedule: 9:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.

Autographs and photos will continue on the final day of SoxFest. Here are the scheduled seminars: Prized Prospects (10:00-11:00 a.m.) with Erik Johnson, Marcus Semien, Josh Phegley and Micah Johnson; A Sluggers Roundtable (11:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m.) with Adam Dunn, Bo Jackson, Jim Thome and Harold Baines; A View from the Dugout (12:00-1:00 p.m.) with Robin Ventura, Don Cooper and Todd Steverson; From the Draft to the Big Leagues (1:00-2:00 p.m.) with Nick Capra, Buddy Bell, Doug Laumann and Dan Fabian; and Big League Laughs (2:00-3:00 p.m.) with Pat McGann, Adam Eaton, Nate Jones, Gordon Beckham and Tom Paciorek.

Photo of the Day

Bo Jackson’s in the house.

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Dreaming of Cooperstown

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

The Baseball Hall of Fame & Museum in Cooperstown, NY announced its 2014 ballot today, and one very important White Sox star is front and center – Frank Thomas.

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The Big Hurt, who won consecutive American League MVP Awards in 1993 and ’94 and placed in the top three in the voting five times overall, finished his 19-year career with 2,468 hits, including 521 home runs. He drove in 1,704 runs, scored 1,494 and had more walks (1,667) than strikeouts (1,397).  Thomas ranks as the White Sox all-time leader in home runs (448), walks (1,466), runs (1,327), RBI (1,465), SLG (.568), total bases (3,949), doubles (447), extra-base hits (906) and OBP (.427).

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The ballot is being mailed this week to more than 600 voting members of the BBWAA.

Pitchers Greg Maddux, Tom Glavine and Eric Gagne, Thomas and second baseman Jeff Kent join 17 holdovers from the 2013 balloting that failed to produce a winning candidate for the National Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, N.Y., for the first time since 1996.

Craig Biggio, who totaled 3,060 hits and was a seven-time All-Star while playing three positions (catcher, second base, outfield), topped the 2013 ballot with 388 votes – 39 shy of the 427 required for election. His total reflected 68.2 percent of the electorate, which consists of BBWAA members with 10 or more consecutive years of Major League Baseball coverage.

Players must be named on 75 percent of the ballots cast to earn election. Other players named on more than half the ballots were pitcher Jack Morris (67.7 percent), first baseman Jeff Bagwell (59.6), catcher Mike Piazza (57.8) and outfielder Tim Raines (52.2). Players may remain on the ballot for up to 15 years provided they receive five percent of the vote in any year. This is the 15th and final year of eligibility for Morris.

Maddux won four consecutive National League Cy Young Awards from 1992-95 and a record 18 Gold Glove Awards in a 23-season career in which he compiled a 355-227 record with a 3.16 earned run average and 3,371 strikeouts in 5,008 1/3 innings combined for the Chicago Cubs, Atlanta Braves, Los Angeles Dodgers and San Diego Padres. The righthander led the NL in ERA four times and won at least 15 games for 17 straight seasons, another record.

Glavine, a two-time NL Cy Young Award winner (1991 and ’98) and 10-time All-Star, was 305-203 with a 3.54 ERA over 22 seasons combined with the Braves and New York Mets. The lefthander was a five-time 20-game winner and won four Silver Slugger Awards. Gagne had 55 saves and a 1.20 ERA in 77 appearances with the Dodgers in his Cy Young Award season.

Jeff Kent, the NL MVP in 2000 with the San Francisco Giants, also played for the Mets, Dodgers, Toronto Blue Jays, Cleveland Indians and Houston Astros in a 17-season career during which he slammed 377 home runs, 351 of which were as a second baseman, a major league record. The five-time All-Star had at least 20 homers and 100 RBI in eight seasons, the most by any second baseman in major-league history.

Hideo Nomo, the 1995 NL Jackie Robinson Rookie of the Year winner and the owner of two no-hitters; and two World Series heroes, outfielders Moises Alou (1997 Florida Marlins) and Luis Gonzalez (2001 Arizona Diamondbacks), are also on the ballot for the first time. Joining them are righthander Mike Mussina, who had a .638 winning percentage (270-153) over 18 seasons with the Baltimore Orioles and New York Yankees; lefthander Kenny Rogers, whose perfect game for the Texas Rangers in 1994 was the highlight of a 20-year career; reliever Armando Benitez, the 2001 Rolaids Relief Man of the Year and first baseman J.T. Snow, a six-time Gold Glove Award winner. Other newcomers are relievers Todd Jones and Mike Timlin, first basemen Sean Casey and Richie Sexson, second baseman Ray Durham, catcher Paul Lo Duca and outfielder Jacque Jones.

Among others returning to the ballot are first basemen Don Mattingly, Fred McGriff, Mark McGwire and Rafael Palmeiro; outfielders Barry Bonds, Sammy Sosa and Larry Walker; pitchers Roger Clemens, Curt Schilling and Lee Smith; shortstop Alan Trammell and third baseman-DH Edgar Martinez.

Writers must return ballots by a Dec. 31 postmark. Votes are counted jointly by BBWAA secretary-treasurer Jack O’Connell and Ernst & Young partner Michael DiLecce. Results will be announced at 2 p.m., EST, Wednesday, January 8, 2014, on MLB Network and the web sites of the Hall of Fame and the BBWAA.

Offseason Banter

The White Sox held a conference call today with Season Ticket Holders and coaches Don Cooper and Todd Steverson.  Below are a few quotes from the call you may enjoy:

DON COOPER:

On Thanksgiving plans: “Eat some turkey. Sit back, relax and enjoy my family and friends.”

On the mentality needed to be a closer: “You have to have something, either good stuff, or an individual pitch that people swing and miss at or not center up. Like Mariano Rivera’s cutter. You have to have a thick skin and you have to be tough.”

On White Sox left-handed starters: “I feel really good about our left-handed pitchers. I feel very good about the arsenal and equipment our left-handers have and I believe they will all have good seasons.”

TODD STEVERSON:

On Thanksgiving plans: “Get the family together, watch my brother make a fried turkey and sit and watch some football games.”

On using his hitting philosophy throughout the organization: “We are in the process of speaking with our minor league staff. We will be from top to bottom, throughout the system, implementing a process [of being aggressive in the strike zone].”

On Jose Abreu: “There is a lot of positive feedback on Abreu. The fact that he can use the whole field and is not just a home run hitter is a plus. He is a strong man. He has a good idea at the plate.”

On his baseball influences: “I loved to watch Andre Dawson. Dave Winfield was one of my baseball heroes as well. I’ve been able to meet and talk baseball with both of them.”

Happy Thanksgiving

Here’s to a wonderful Thanksgiving for White Sox fans everywhere.  May you be surrounded by family and friends with many reasons to be thankful …

You Can Put It On The Board

The offseason is only a couple days old, but we received some good news already with word that Ken “Hawk” Harrelson has advanced as one of 10 finalists for the Baseball Hall of Fame’s 2014 Ford C. Frick Award.

The Frick Award is presented annually for excellence in baseball broadcasting by the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum and Hawk has the chance to become the fifth White Sox broadcaster to win the award, joining previous honorees Bob Elson (1979), Jack Brickhouse (1983), Harry Caray (1989) and Milo Hamilton (1992).

Hawk just completed his 21st consecutive season in the Sox television booth and 29th overall, and his catchphrases have become common terminology among baseball fans not only in Chicago, but throughout the country.

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Check out a remix of some of his most famous phrases: http://wapc.mlb.com/cws/play/?content_id=30679589&query=hawk

The other nine worthy finalists are: Joe Castiglione, Jacques Doucet, Bill King, Duane Kuiper, Eric Nadel, Eduardo Ortega, Mike Shannon, Dewayne Staats and Pete van Wieren.

The winner of the 2014 Frick Award will be announced on December 11 at the Baseball Winter Meetings and will be honored during the July 26 Awards Presentation as part of Hall of Fame Weekend 2014 in Cooperstown.  To read more about the final 10 candidates, visit www.baseballhall.org.

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