View Full Version : THIS DATE IN SOX HISTORY: MARCH 4TH/MJ debut, big win vs Cubs

03-04-2008, 07:55 AM


1988: A White Sox source confirmed the team was negotiating wit the city of St. Petersburg, Fla., about a backup stadium plan should the Chicago deal collapse. St. Petersburg was in the process of constructing a stadium even though it did not have a team while the Sox were looking for a replacement for 78-year old ComiskeyPark. The St. Petersburg Times reported that the St. Pete’s assistant city manager had made two trips to Chicago and had phoned Sox offices 12 times and called once to a Sox official between Oct. 16 and Jan. 21, according to city phone records. The Sox eventually got a stadium deal, leaving St. Petersburg out in the cold.


1994: White Sox non-roster invitee Michael Jordan went 0-for-1 in his spring training debut in the White Sox 9-0 loss to the Texas Rangers in the Grapefruit League opener before 7,091 curiosity-seekers at Ed Smith Stadium in Sarasota, Fla. Jordan, signed by the White Sox as a free agent in February, entered the game in right field in the sixth and was retired by Texas pitcher Darren Oliver on a comebacker in his lone at bat. “I good wood on it,” Jordan said of his at bat. “I didn’t strike out so that’s a step forward.” The only action he saw in the field was gloving a Jose Canseco bloop double but he had no fly balls hit his way.


2001: The White Sox received an encouraging outing from Cal Eldred in a 7-3 Cactus League win over Milwaukee before 3,644 in Tucson. Eldred, debuting only 20 days after surgery on his right elbow, blanked the Brewers in three innings in the White Sox first victory of the spring. Eldred played a major role in the team’s run to the American League Central Division title in 2000. Eldred was 10-2 before injuring his elbow. He did return on Sept. 27 but was not placed on the postseason roster. Eldred wound up going 4-0 in the spring but made only two appearances in the regular season before being disabled for good on April 12.


2003: Joe Borchard continued his Cactus League hot streak with an opposite-field grand slam in the White Sox 9-8 win over Texas in Surprise, Ariz. Ticketed for Triple-A Charlotte, the slam was part of a three-game performance which saw Borchard hit two home runs with a triple. Borchard, one of the biggest busts in Sox history, wound up hitting .207 in spring training.


2004: Ozzie Guillen’s White Sox managerial debut was put on hold for a day when the team’s Cactus League opener against Arizona in Tucson, Ariz., was rained out. Guillen would make his debut the next day.


2005: The White Sox posted the first victory of their World Championship season when they beat Colorado 7-5 in a split squad game in Tucson, Ariz. The win came after the Sox had dropped their first three Cactus League outings.


2007: The White Sox introduced new Cub manager Lou Piniella to the crosstown rivalry with a 13-2 Cactus League win over the Northsiders before 12,903 in Mesa, Ariz. The Sox launched five home runs: two from Paul Konerko, one of which was a three-run blast and one each from Rob Mackowiak, Jermaine Dye and Gustavo Molina.

Editor's Note: Information for these entries is gleaned from the author's files, retrosheet.org, various Internet sources, press reports of the day, White Sox media guides and the many White Sox books written by the great Rich Lindberg.