January 2010

Picking Up Pieces

Thursday, January 28, 2009

SoxFest Leftovers

Saw a couple of blog questions about the absence of Andruw Jones and Billy Pierce from SoxFest.

Andruw orginally committed but then called us back a week or so ago to explain that he had run into a scheduling conflict and could not attend.

SoxFest can be a long weekend for everyone and so we try to avoid using veteran guys like Bill Pierce and Minnie Minoso too much during the three days.  In Bill’s specific case, he joined Gary Peters and headed to NYC on Sunday night for the BAT (Baseball Assistance Team) dinner.  We didn’t want to tax No. 19 too much knowing he had the upcoming trip planned with Gloria.


A friendly reader notified me of some important news from last weekend … according to obrn, frequent poster Kenwo (ya know, the happy guy) welcomed a beautiful little girl, Maggie Nicole, into White Sox Nation.  Unfortunately, Maggie’s arrival forced Kenwo to miss the final day of SoxFest.   

And because he is now way too busy to post, I am going to take the liberty of quoting obrn quoting kenwo about his SoxFest experience:
It was fun…. got Peavy, Kotsay, Nix, Alexei, Beckham, Floyd Bannister and the 1 Dogg Lance Johnson. I was traveling back and forth this year (due to xxxxx being pregnant obviously)…. so I missed hanging out at the hotel bar and everything. I was drinking the white sox kool aid a little too much… I went into it very unhappy but after … Seeing Jenks and Garcia (they each look to be in way better shape) I feel a bit better about our chances…. I think we are going to the hospital today- xxxxx is having contractions about every 20 minutes…. but the only things I really wanted to do were get Freddy Garcia’s autograph, listen to Beckhams seminar and spend money at the stands… 

Tell you what Kenwo, as a birthday present for Maggie, give me a call/email and I think I can take care of that Freddy Garcia autograph for you.


Fired Up

SoxFest always gets me fired up for the start of spring training (OK, I’ll admit my anticipation for the spring is also due to the 7 degree temps).

If you didn’t see it, here was a Q&A video Ken Williams did just before SoxFest opened:

Click Here to Listen to 10 Questions with Ken Williams


SoxFest Stories

One of the best parts of SoxFest for me is the chance to sit up in our Team Suite during the weekend and catch up with guys and reconnect with former players.

On Saturday, Ozzie was in rare form, especially when talking about how tough Joe Crede was at third base,

“When I played third base, man, they hit shots at me,” Guillen recounted, hopping up from his seat to illustrate his matador approach to the ball.  “I’d spin and get out of the way.

“But Joe Crede, wow, he was tough. I remember one time in Baltimore (I think it was), he took a shot off his chest.  It was like BAM!  And Joe, he never complained.  This time he called me and Hermie out.

“I was like, ‘I don’t wanna look, I don’t wanna look.

“Hermie opened Joe’s shirt and the ballmark was already there.  Swollen, purple, ugly and right in the middle you could read a signature, Bud Selig.”

I also chuckled when Scott Linebrink and Jake Peavy described their past offseason throwing programs.

For Linebrink, his target out in the field was a fake deer like the ones used to practice bow hunting.

After a while, the baseball’s obliterated the deer, so Linebrink switched to a hay bale.  Now, after years of offseason pounding, the hale bale is starting to come apart and the baseballs sometimes stick inside.

And for Peavy? He just needed a bucket of balls and a fence.

Can you picture a Cy Young Award winner slinging a bucket of balls at a fence and then walking up to pick up the two dozen, put them back into the bucket and then walk back and do it all over again?

That’s what makes these guys so good at what they do …




SoxFest Schedule

Thursday, January 21, 2009

Weekend Ahead

Here is the SoxFest schedule for the weekend ahead.

Virtual SoxFest

For White Sox fans who can’t make it downtown to SoxFest this weekend, follow all of the action on whitesox.com/soxfest. We’ll feature photos, video, tweets and audio from the entire weekend, including behind-the-scenes access and special reports from our player correspondent, Mark Teahen.

Check out the link on whitesox.com/soxfest, @InsideTheSox, @Southpaw and @ESPY_TEAHEN.


SoxFest Chase

Friday, January 15, 2009

SoxFest Passes

If Twitter Hide & Seek aren’t your cup of tea, here’s another way to get free SoxFest passes.

If you want to try your hand at Hide & Seek, check out @InsideTheSox on twitter.

Happy Birthday

Happy birthday to White Sox pitching coach Don Cooper.

SoxFest and Other Items

Thursday, January 14, 2009

Hide & Tweet

Today is our first scavenger hunt related to SoxFest.  We’ve hidden two SoxFest passes somewhere in Chicago.  Check out @InsideTheSox for hints and between 5-6 pm tonight, we’ll twitpic the location of the tickets.  First fan to them gets them.

We’ll continue doing this Hide & Tweet until the middle of next week.  Should be fun.

(Oh, and we want the winner to twitpic us back an image showing them with the winning ducats).

Hot Stove League

As the hot stove continues to burn this January, trades are on the minds of baseball fans everywhere.  Obviously, some baseball trades work out better than others, and one author decided to take a closer look at the good, the bad, and the ugly from the past century.

In “Traded: Inside the Most Lopsided Trades in Baseball History” (ACTA Sports, 1-800-397-2282), author Doug Decatur profiles 306 of the most “lopsided trades” from the twentieth century.  In addition to spotlighting the most famous and infamous trades, the book also includes a section for all 30 Major League teams documenting both the positive and negative acquisitions throughout the years.

And how do your White Sox fare?

“In the twentieth century, the White Sox made 17 lopsided trades to the good and only 11 lopsided trades to the bad for a net of 590 wins,” Decatur writes, “making the White Sox the second best trading club in the twentieth century.”

Indeed, by Decatur’s math, the White Sox trail only the Cleveland Indians and rank ahead of the Minnesota Twins (tough division).  Decatur uses a formula which includes the future value of the players for each season after they were traded in conjunction with Bill James’ Win Shares stat. Win Shares are defined as “a way to relate a player’s individual statistics to the number of wins he contributed to his team.”

The White Sox made the eighth-best trade in the twentieth century, according to Decatur, when they acquired Tommy John, Tommy Agee and Johnny Romano from Cleveland in 1965 in exchange for Rocky Colavito as part of a three-team trade.

Some of the notables acquired by the White Sox over the years in “lop-sided” trades include: Eddie Collins, Nellie Fox, Chet Lemon, Billy Pierce, Al Simmons, Hoyt Wilhelm and Wilbur Wood.

And what about a certain Venezuelan shortstop who came to the Sox in 1985?  Well, that trade of LaMarr Hoyt for Ozzie Guillen ranks as the seventh most lopsided in franchise history.

Talk about a trade changing the face of a franchise forever!


SoxFest Fun

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

We’ve hinted in a few places here and on Twitter (@InsideTheSox) that we were playing around with ideas to make SoxFest a Social Media event second to none.

Here’s a rough draft of our plans for the rest of this week and all of next week/SoxFest weekend. As always, we are more than open to any other ideas generated from the very best source … Sox fans themselves.

Let me hear them.

Virtual SoxFest

One of our goals this SoxFest is to create a “virtual event” for White Sox fans by using  Twitter, Facebook and whitesox.com to deliver an inside SoxFest experience to fans who cannot make it to the Palmer House Hilton the weekend of January 22-24.  Just follow the White Sox on @InsideTheSox, @OrgulloSox and @Southpaw for all the behind-the-scenes news, notes and funny moments.

We’ve spent some time developing some fun (at least we think they’ll be fun) ways for you to be a part of SoxFest even if you live in Phoenix or can’t make it downtown to be a part of the action.

Among the ideas:

? Twitter Hide And Seek for SoxFest tickets – Beginning Thursday, January 14, we are going to be hiding a pair of SoxFest tickets at locations around Chicago daily (through Wednesday of next week).  Once the tickets are hidden, we’ll Twitpic out a photo of the hidden location.  First fan to the site picks up the free tickets to Saturday/Sunday of SoxFest.  And on Tuesday and Wednesday of next week, Southpaw will be out and about in Chicago holding SoxFest tickets.  First fan to find Southpaw gets the passes.

? Twitter Video – White Sox players and staff will tape and send out video messages and footage all weekend long.

? Fan Video – White Sox fans will be invited to stop by the whitesox.com booth and tape their own video messages that can be sent out via twitter.

? Twitter Correspondent – One White Sox player will serve as our official “Twitter Correspondent” for SoxFest, offering his thoughts, insight and video all weekend long.

? Best Quotes From Seminars – All weekend long, the very best comments and quotes from the many seminars, including the always popular sessions with Ken Williams and Ozzie Guillen, will be tweeted out to Sox fans.

? Twinquiries – Fans at home on twitter can send in questions to @InsideTheSox that will be asked during every seminar.

? Video Reports – Video reports from seminars and SoxFest will be posted to whitesox.com all weekend long.

? Twitter Tag – Autograph opportunities will be announced during the weekend.  The first fan to find a Sox player at a hidden spot in the hotel will receive an autograph.

? Mascot Olympics – See (either in person or virtually) Southpaw and other mascots from Chicago sports franchises compete in a mini Olympic competition on Sunday.  You might even see footage of Southpaw on twitter preparing for the difficult competition.

? Twitter Central – Stop by the whitesox.com booth at SoxFest and visit Twitter Central, where fans can send their own tweets and check out the on-line action surrounding SoxFest.


Sound like fun?  We think/hope so.  Feel free to send along any ideas or thoughts you might have that will help us make SoxFest weekend even more fun for White Sox fans of all ages.

SoxFest Reminder

Wednesday, January 6, 2009 

To order tickets at 10 am Thursday, click here. 
CHICAGO – The Chicago White Sox will have single day and two-day passes to SoxFest 2010 available for purchase tomorrow (Thursday, January 7) at 10 a.m. at whitesox.com/SoxFest.

Single day passes to SoxFest are $50 (Saturday) and $35 (Sunday), while two-day passes for both Saturday and Sunday are $70.  Weekend passes (available only with hotel reservations) are $75.  Friday night of SoxFest is exclusively for hotel guests.

White Sox players Gordon Beckham, Mark Buehrle, Paul Konerko, Juan Pierre, Jake Peavy, A.J. Pierzynski, Alexei Ramirez and Matt Thornton, among other players, along with manager Ozzie Guillen are scheduled to attend SoxFest 2010, presented by Comcast SportsNet, Miller Lite, the Palmer House Hilton and Pepsi. 
Among the former White Sox stars scheduled to attend:  Floyd Bannister, Lance Johnson, Ron Kittle, Bill Melton, Minnie Minoso, Gary Peters and Billy Pierce.  Coaches Harold Baines, Don Cooper, Jeff Cox, Juan Nieves, Mark Salas and Greg Walker, along with broadcasters Ed Farmer, Ken “Hawk” Harrelson, Darrin Jackson and Steve Stone all are scheduled to appear at SoxFest this year.
 SoxFest will be held Friday, January 22, Saturday, January 23 and Sunday, January 24, 2010.  Days and times are:  Friday, 4:00 to 9:00 p.m.; Saturday, 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.; and Sunday, 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
Complete information on SoxFest 2010 is available at whitesox.com/SoxFest or by calling the SoxFest hotline at (312) 609-1915.

SoxFest Passes On Sale Thursday

Monday, January 4, 2010

SoxFest News

I know many Sox fans who have been waiting for SoxFest tickets — both Sat/Sun passes and individual-day passes — go on sale Thursday.  Here’s today’s press release.


White Sox Moment No. 1

Friday, January 1, 2009

A Decade of Great White Sox Moments

No. 1

No surprise here, but I took the liberty of combining several “moments” into one … Winning the 2005 World Series Championship.

This includes …

Orlando Palmeiro swinging, the ball bounding past Bobby Jenks, Juan Uribe’s dash to the ball, his cross diamond bullet to Konerko and it was over.  “Out, out! The White Sox win the World Series!”


WS_Celeb-01.jpgUribe’s amazing dive into the stands to record the second out of the ninth inning. Has an infielder ever made consecutive plays like that to end a World Series?

Jermaine Dye’s single up the middle to score Willie Harris with the lone run in our 1-0 Game 4 victory, giving the Sox an 11-1 postseason record and a World Series sweep.


Dye_WS_Winning_Hit-01.jpgThe incredible, emotional Victory Parade when the team returned to Chicago, highlighted when Konerko pulled the ball from the final out of Game 4 and presented it to Jerry Reinsdorf.  Chicago’s celebration — the reaction of generations of Sox fans to our victory — and PK’s gesture said so much is so few words.

What a moment.