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WSI News - Totally Biased Game Recaps

That '70s Show

September 14 vs. the Cleveland Indians


Today's Game Rating:
ZERO STARS
A good production needs energy and memorable performances. Neither was evident tonight.

Short Take:The Sox lose weakly to the Indians 8-1, causing one to muse about weak Sox teams of the past.

It was 1974 and my girlfriend had never been to a baseball game. This simply wouldn't do. I resolved to correct this gap in her acculturation by taking her to a White Sox game. I was confident that once there she would fall under the spell of ballpark ambience as I had so many years before.

It was a Sunday in May. I convinced another couple to join us and we sat on the first-base side of the lower deck and watched the Sox lose to the A's as we shivered in the damp, 53-degree air. The game was slow, the seats were cold, the crowd was sparse, and I had a great time. The other three, not so much.

A few years pass. By 1977 the girlfriend was my wife, and I convinced her to try another ball game. On a Sunday afternoon we traveled to 35th Street to see the White Sox play the expansion Toronto Blue Jays. The Sox won, the weather was perfect, and we both had a great time. We attended several more games that magical year and the spell of the summer game fell on her like I knew it would.

More years pass and the games we attend are marked by ill-equipped teams playing tepid baseball before sparse crowds. Rookies, castoffs, and the flotsam and jetsam of bad trades make up the White Sox of the late 1970s. They looked better in spurts through the 1980s, even winning the division in '83, but on balance the games were exhibitions of mopery.

Tonight my wife joined me with friends at the ballpark and we saw the feckless White Sox lose to the Cleveland Indians 8-1. A haunting sense of déjà vu came over me -- this was the first game she'd attended in seven years and I'd brought her to see a White Sox team of rookies and ill-equipped ballplayers playing tepid baseball. Life does not move in a straight line; it moves in maddening circles.

Andre Rienzo started for the Sox but couldn't finish. Wild as a March hare, he threw 82 pitches in four innings of work, giving up five earned runs on the back of seven hits, four walks, and two home runs. Charlie Leesman came in to fill space for two innings and gave up two more runs. Daniel Webb, Donnie Veal and Addison Reed each pitched an inning, with Reed giving up another run in the ninth.

The Sox' lone run came in the bottom of the ninth. Down 8-0, our heroes rose to the occasion by going station-to-station on three consecutive singles by Avisail Garcia, Conor Gillaspie, and Dayan Viciedo. With the bases loaded, Josh Phegley hit a shallow fly ball that was enough for Garcia to score from third. One strikeout later the game was over. The Sox had expended three hits that inning in order to bring home one (arguably pointless) run.

The Indians did what they needed to do. They're a team thick in the AL wild-card race and they need to notch these fish-in-a-barrel wins against weak teams like the White Sox. The Sox, no spoilers they, simply doffed their green Halfway-To-St.- Patrick's-Day caps and got out of the way. An entertaining fireworks show accompanied by jolly Irish music followed tonight's endeavor. We filed out of the ballpark with the heavy-footed numbness of weary longshoremen, knowing that the White Sox have run this ship aground. Aye, yet we hold out hope that Admiral Hahn can make this vessel seaworthy again.

It's a long way from the dim years of the 1970s. But watching the Sox tonight I'm not sure the way really is that long. No matter. The spell was cast on me as an ingenuous kid many years ago and I know I'll be back. My wife? She might want to wait another seven years.

WSI's
Hawk and Stoney's Thumb Guide:
Two Thumbs Down. "Stoney, you know who I couldn't bear to face after a season like this? Yaz."


submitted by tebman.

Sox Clubhouse "Pick to Click" Winner

Josh Phegley

One RBI tonight, and it was his on a sacrifice fly. A thin gruel, but it's something.

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