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WSI News - Totally Biased Game Recaps

Paulie Deserved Better

May 23 vs. the Minnesota Twins

Sox Project Update:
Substandard Materials
Using materials that aren't up to spec means that a lot of work will need to be done over.

Short Take: The Sox lost 4-3 to the Twins on Paul Konerko's number-retirement day.

You couldn't ask for a better day. 75 degrees, blue sky, and a sellout crowd at the ballpark to be part of Paul Konerko's number-retirement ceremony. There's something genuine about Konerko that White Sox fans have always understood, a salt-of-the-earth quality that's rare enough that when you find it, you don't want it lost or forgotten. Konerko's number joins those of only nine others, a tiny number indeed within the long shadow of the team's 115-year history. It was also Boy Scout Day, celebrated with a steady parade of kids and their parents around the warning track

Konerko deserves it and will not be forgotten. Today's game, by contrast, deserves to be forgotten. I had hoped, no I expected, that the review of Paulie's career and the good will generated by the sincere words washing back in the crowd's adulation would inspire the current team to play with focus and passion.


The Sox lost 4-3 to the Twins, even after Chris Sale pitched 8 innings and struck out 10. Sox hitters were stupified by Twins starter Trevor May, a pitcher who came into the game with an ERA over 5 but nonetheless struck out nine Sox batters in seven innings. There were eleven strikeouts overall for the Sox today. Gentlemen, in order to win games, runs must be scored. In order to score runs, runners must be on base. To get on base, hitters must make contact with the ball. Call me Captain Obvious if you must, but I often wonder if Sox hitters have ever gotten the memo.

Sale's fastball wasn't fooling anybody. He only gave up five hits, but they were hit hard, two of them as solo homers in the second inning. In the third, Conor Gillaspie's throwing error set up another run, as it allowed Danny Santana to reach first. Santana scored on a groundout after moving to third on Brian Dozier's double. Trevor Plouffe's single scored Dozier to give the Twins four runs, all they needed to keep the lid on.

The Sox got their first run in the second inning when Adam LaRoche doubled and then scored on Alexei Ramirez's single. Runs two and three came in the third inning when Carlos Sanchez scored on Adam Eaton's triple, then Eaton scored on Melky Cabrera's 4-3 groundout. The score was 4-3 at that point and the Sox looked to be in it. I mean, it was only the third inning! But 4-3 is where it stayed. In the eighth, Eaton led off with a line drive into the gap that had triple written all over it but was speared in a balletic diving catch by centerfielder Aaron Hicks.

The Sox seemed to resuscitate in the ninth. With two outs, Ramirez hit a bloop single to right. J.B. Shuck walked. All was needed was a clean single to tie it, and maybe to win it with two outs and two runners on. But fate decreed that it was Tyler Flowers' turn at bat. I wondered whether one of those Boy Scouts who circled the field before the game had been available to pinch-hit, but Flowers showed up anyway.

Since we needed a way to end the game, it was fortuitous that Flowers entered the picture. Few players are as well-equipped as Flowers to kill a rally or bring a whimpering finish to a tight ball game. He struck out, of course.

Rather than dwell any further on this letdown, let's talk again about Konerko's lovely presentation. Ken Harrelson served as the M.C., Jim Thome spoke, and Konerko, surrounded by his family and teammates, gave remarks that were, like his playing style, concise and sincere. A cover was removed from the wall to reveal "Konerko 14" painted on the facade behind the plate right between Aparicio's 11 and Lyons' 16. The whole thing was splendid, capped by a video retrospective of Konerko's biggest moments.

In times like these when the Sox are underperforming, I fall back on memories of guys like Konerko. "The pain of parting is nothing to the joy of meeting again," wrote Dickens, and seeing Paulie again confirmed that for me. He's the goods.

Rebuilding Recap:
At this pace the building won't be finished before the snow falls.

submitted by tebman.

Sox Clubhouse "Pick to Click" Winner

Adam Eaton

An RBI triple as part of a 2-for-4 day.
Keep it up and maybe in 20 years they'll have a retirement party for you too.

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