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WSI News - Totally Biased Game Recaps

From Champions to Spoilers

September 30 at Cleveland

Sox Magic Number:
"After clinching the best record in the AL, braintrust at Baseball Prospectus now increases Sox' odds of winning AL Central from 88.7% to 98.3% (+/-) 3% due to inadequate sample size."

Short Take:White Sox take it to Tribe 3-2 in 13 innings to clinch homefield advantage throughout the playoffs.

The White Sox put a serious damper on Cleveland's postseason aspirations tonight with a 3-2 win in 13 innings. With the win, the Sox clinched the best record in the American League and will enjoy homefield advantage throughout their playoff run as a reward.

Mark Buehrle pitched a gem in his final tune-up before the ALDS. Buehrle shut the Indians out for 5.2 innings, allowing only 3 hits and recording 6 strikeouts in the process. The Sox only managed one run off of Cleveland starter Kevin Millwood, who kept the game close in 7 innings of work.

The Sox scored their first run in the 5th inning. After a one-out single by Chris Widger, Geoff Blum delivered a line-drive off of Millwood's shin which ricocheted into right field for a single. Willie Harris drove Widger home with a single to put the Sox on the board. The Sox bullpen kept the score 1-0 until the bottom of the 9th inning.

Damaso Marte, who pitched a perfect 8th inning, started off the 9th by allowing a leadoff single to Travis Hafner. The next batter, Victor Martinez, doubled to give Cleveland runners on 2nd and 3rd with nobody out. Dustin Hermanson came on to clean up Marte's mess. He was unable to keep Cleveland off the board as Ronnie Belliard drove home the tying run with an RBI groundout. Hermanson was able to induce a quirky double play to get out of the inning and send the game to extras. After intentionally walking Ben Broussard, Aaron Boone hit a grounder to Harris at second. Harris tried to tag Broussard but was unable to and had to throw to first instead to barely get Boone. Broussard was then caught in a rundown, and in the meantime Martinez tried to score from third base. Geoff Blum, playing shortstop tonight, dove and tagged Broussard out before Martinez could score what would have been the game winning run.

Cleveland had a chance to win the game in the bottom of the 11th when they loaded the bases against Neal Cotts with just one out. Cotts bore down and struck out Broussard and retired Boone on a groundout to escape the inning. With Cleveland unable to capitalize, the Sox took charge in the top of the 13th. Harris hit a one-out triple high off the wall in right center, and the Sox appeared to be in business. But on the next pitch, Scott Podsednik laid down a drag bunt right to Broussard at first base, who threw home to start a rundown that retired Harris. Podsednik was able to advance to second base, which was important. Paul Konerko, who like many of the regulars had been given the day off, came in to pinch hit for Brian Anderson. Konerko was intentionally walked, and Pablo Ozuna replaced Konerko as a pinch runner. This set up Ross Gload to be the hero. Gload, who had been 0-for-5 on the evening, lined a pitch into the gap in right center for a two-run double, putting the Sox up 3-1.

Bobby Jenks closed the door in the bottom of the 13th, earning his 5th save of the season despite allowing a two-out solo home run to Belliard. With the 3-2 victory, the Sox guaranteed themselves the best record in the American League for the 2005 season, an accomplishment which they deserve to be very proud of.

Cleveland now trails both Boston and New York by one game for the wild card, with two to play. They will try to keep their playoff hopes alive tomorrow afternoon as Jake Westbrook (15-14, 4.46) goes against Jon Garland (17-10, 3.53). Gametime is 12:25 pm CDT and will be televised on FOX.

Ozzieball Update:
 Note any smallball moves that worked or backfired.

submitted by beckett21.

Sox Clubhouse "Pick to Click" Winner

Ross Gload

2-run double in 13th is the game winner.

Play WSI's Pick to Click Contest!


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Totally Biased Game Recaps

September 29... The Last (And Lost) Weekend

September 24... Covey Captivates, but Kluber Cruises

September 22... At Least They Won't Clinch Here

September 18...Klubered, but Not Clobbered

September 16... Baltimore Blanked

September 10... Thrown Away

September 8... Anaheim Annihilation

September 3... Power Special

September 1... 18 Strikeouts Later, the White Sox Lose

August 30...Leaky Bullpen Bombed by Boston

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