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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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June 26,1975

Posted 02-11-2018 at 11:11 AM by TommyJohn
Updated 12-12-2018 at 08:35 AM by TommyJohn

June 26,1975
vs. Texas Rangers
at White Sox Park

The June 22 wins against the Twins kicked off a winning streak that reached four games going into this Thursday afternoon match vs. the Texas Rangers. Wilbur Wood, 4-10 with a 5.20 ERA at this point, went against Ferguson Jenkins, who was following up a 25-13 season in 1974 with a so-so 8-7 record. Still it promised to be a fun match up.

7,681 turned out on a nice day to see the game. The Sox kicked off the scoring right away. In the 1st inning Jorge Orta reached when shortstop Roy Smalley was blinded by the sun and lost Orta's flyball for a two base error. Carlos May then singled him home for the 1-0 lead.

The Sox tacked two more runs off Fergie for a 3-0 lead before Len Randle and Smalley singled with two out in the top of the 5th to bring up Jim Sundberg. The catcher lined a shot that bounced into the stands for a ground rule double that scored Randle. Cesar Tovar then scorched a shot to right center that looked like it was going to drop for a game-tying hit. Pat Kelly came on full bore, dove, snared the ball at the top of his glove and hung onto it for the inning-ending out as he tumbled to the ground.

Mike Hargrove led off the top of the 7th with a home run to narrow the Sox' lead to 3-2. Two batters later Wood issued a walk and gave way to Rich Gossage, who got them out of the inning, then set the Rangers down 1-2-3 in the 8th, including two strikeouts.

In the bottom of the 8th Jorge Orta singled with one out, stole second, then came home on May's single. Deron Johnson reached on a pop fly single that the Rangers lost in the sun and Ken Henderson singled to load them up for Bill Melton.

Melty was by this time having what for him was a typical year. He had only 4 home runs and his batting average hung around the .220-.230 range most of the month, at one point dipping to .215. He got hot as of late and had 8 RBIs in his last 13 games.

He stepped up against Fergie and became the Bill Melton of old, cracking a drive to deep left that landed in the seats for a grand slam. It was his 5th home run of the year, and it was of somewhat historic proportions. The slam was Melton's 4th career bases-loaded blast, tying him for first all-time in Sox history with Dave Nicholson and Pete Ward. The all-time Sox home run king could also claim a share of the team grand slam record as well.

Gossage gave up one run in the 9th but got out of it to earn his 11th save. The win was the Sox' 5th in a row.

"Right now, Melton is the same Melton who led the league in home runs three years ago, that's how well he's hitting the ball" Chuck Tanner beamed after the game. Whether anybody besides him actually believed that is unknown.

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