Originally Posted by Foulke You
You are right for the most part however, in 1994 I feel the Sox finally addressed that 3rd "big bat" problem with Julio Franco. Julio was having a tremendous year and it was no coincidence that Frank Thomas was on pace to have one of his best seasons with Franco batting cleanup behind him. When the strike began in August, Julio Franco was batting .319 20HRs and 98 RBIs. The Big Hurt was hitting .353 38HR and 101RBIs. It's no coincidence that the 1994 team seemed World Series bound because they were more polished and balanced then the 1993 team was. Sadly, we will never know what that team could have done in October.
By the time the strike was resolved in 1995, the Sox turned to Chris Sabo and a washed up John Kruk to replace the lost power of Julio Franco who had gone to play a year in Japan. Obviously, that was a complete disaster along with the rest of the 1995 team. By the time the Sox addressed the 3rd "big bat" problem with Albert Belle, the pitching staff had eroded and then the White Flag trade happened.
I wholeheartedly endorse the post above, as it is full of truth. Franco was indeed the X-factor the Sox had been missing during the Frank/Ventura/McDowell years.
"I have the ultimate respect for White Sox fans. They were as miserable as the Cubs and Red Sox fans ever were but always had the good decency to keep it to themselves. And when they finally won the World Series, they celebrated without annoying every other fan in the country." Jim Caple, ESPN (January 12, 2011)
"We have now sunk to a depth at which the restatement of the (bleeding) obvious is the first duty of intelligent men." — George Orwell