I remember when this happened, and I also remember 1987 as one of the most bizarre seasons I ever experienced.
I remember MIL winning 13 straight to start the year, a streak broken by us!!
Many of us thought they were going to be like DET in 1984, but by the third week of June they would never get less than six games out of first place.
They also lost 11-12 in a row a month or so later. So much for wiping out that big gap they had.
Our White Sox looked like total crap for most of the year, then in mid-September they woke up like 20 games under .500 and battled back to finish just eight games out of first, remarkable when you realize what comatose punching bags they were most of the year.
Regarding Big Cec, It was established that it wasn't about money, as Cooper had a guaranteed contract for 1988.
And yes, thanks to Hawk, teams used 24 players instead of 25. But teams didn't have 12-13 man pitching staffs either back then.
I believe the Molitor theory is definitely a contributing factor, as once he returned he took the DH spot he hit his behind off, and Greg Brock was doing very well at 1B.
With Coop obviously washed up, Treblehorn went with the hot hands and kept it that way, then realized he left one of the best players in team history to rot on the bench.
When he tried to give him a few token game appearances, Cooper blew it off thinking if he has sat all this time, why play?
It would be interesting to really hear the truth after all these years.
'We drafted him... He achieved greatness here... A 2-time MVP, and one of the BEST hitters in MLB history... And soon he will wear a White Sox uniform again... On his Hall of Fame plaque. He's #35, Frank Thomas!