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In honor of actor Andy Garcia and his (unintentionally) hilarious reaction to Sofia (Mary Corleone) Coppola's death scene in "The Godfather, Part III."
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May 16,1975

Posted 02-04-2018 at 03:31 PM by TommyJohn
Updated 12-12-2018 at 07:32 AM by TommyJohn

May 16,1975
vs. Cleveland Indians
at White Sox Park

So far, the 1975 version of the White Sox were not shaping up to be a very good team. At one point they were 7-15. By this date they were 12-19 and attendance was down from the previous year. Small crowds, most of them four figures, came out in the cold of April and early May, prompting the usual remarks from the media about the "dwindling" Sox fan base.

One thing that the Sox did provide, though, was their share of late inning comeback wins. On April 24 they had beaten the Twins 4-3 after entering the 9th losing 3- 0. On May 7 they trailed the Twins 2-0 in the bottom of the 9th before mounting a 3 run comeback win. In both games the winning hit was delivered by the Sox' Old Man River, Deron Johnson. The Sox would do it again on the night of the 16th.

Another oldster, Claude Osteen, matched up against Indians rookie Jim Kern.

The Indians got to Osteen with two out in the 1st. With Rico Carty on first and George Hendrick on 3rd, Carty bolted for second. Jorge Orta caught Pete Varney's throw but was unabe to apply the tag. Orta then saw Hendrick running towards the plate and fired back to Varney, but the throw was high and Hendrick slid in with a steal of home plate. The Indians scored again in the 2nd when Frank Duffy lofted a sacrifice fly that plated Boog Powell.

Osteen gave way to Rich Gossage in the top of the 6th. "Goose" proceeded to set the Indians down over the next few innings.

It remained that way until the 9th, when Kern took the mound in a quest to achieve a complete game shutout and his first major league win. He lasted all of one batter, walking Bill Melton, who gave way to pinch-runner Bee Bee Richard. Deron Johnson then singled Richard to 3rd, then departed for pinch-runner Bob Coluccio. Tony Muser smacked a single to score Richard, Bucky Dent followed with another single to load the bases and that was all for Kern's reliever Tom Buskey. Dave LaRoche came in to strike out Bill Stein. Chuck Tanner then sent righthanded Buddy Bradford up to pinch-hit against lefty LaRoche. Cleveland rookie manager Frank Robinson countered with right-handed rookie Dennis Eckersley.

Eck, however, wasn't the lights out, Hall of Fame reliever he was to become later in life. He plunked Bradford with his very first pitch, forcing in the tying run. Jorge Orta then came up with a chance to atone for the 1st inning miscue which had led to Cleveland's first run. He patiently worked the count to 3 and 2 before Eckersley fired ball four, which forced in the winning run.

Rich Gossage had completed yet another stellar relief outing. He allowed only one hit and no runs in 3 2/3 innings to lower his ERA to 0.92. After years of pitching erratically and bouncing between Chicago and Iowa, the fireballer looked like he might finally be putting things together.

"I'm just throwing to an area-in and out. I'm not aiming the ball." he told Richard Dozer after the game. "I guess I'm what cha call hot."

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