Hawk: “Our Kids Just Will Not Quit”
Saturday, April 26, 2014
White Sox vs. Rays at U.S. Cellular Field (6:10 p.m., CT, CSN). Starters: LHP John Danks (2-0, 2.84) for the Sox, LHP Cesar Ramos (0-1, 4.91) for Tampa Bay. Danks owns a 1.46 ERA in his last two starts and all four of his starts this season have been quality.
Sox Starting Lineup: Eaton CF, Semien 3B, Abreu 1B, Viciedo RF, Konerko DH, Ramirez SS, De Aza LF, Beckham 2B, Nieto C.
Plays of the Day
Last night’s dramatic 9-6 victory over the Rays is the kind of win that could turn a season around. Here’s how it unfolded: Down 4-1 after two innings, the Sox fought back to tie the score at 4-4. The Rays scored twice in the top of the ninth for a 6-4 lead with the Sox needing a rally to stage yet another comeback. And that’s exactly what happened–prompting Hawk Harrelson’s on-air exclamation above. After Alexei Ramirez flied out, Alejandro De Aza doubled, Tyler Flowers walked and was replaced at first by pinch-runner Leury Garcia. Batting for Gordon Beckham, Paul Konerko walked, loading the bases, and was removed from the game in favor pinch-runner Adrian Nieto. Adam Eaton then reached first on a fielder’s choice (which was challenged and upheld) and on the play De Aza scored as Nieto was forced at second. Marcus Semien drew a walk to once again load the bases. Then, on an 0-1 count with two outs and the game on the line, Jose Abreu went deep for an opposite field grand slam, his second homer of the game. All in all, he went 3-5 with six RBI. It is also indicative of the team effort that no less than nine different players had a hand in the ninth-inning rally.
Oh, what a night!
All Things Abreu
Abreu currently is tied for the major league lead in homers (9) and RBI (27)…he is the first rookie in major-league history to hit nine home runs in April, moving past Albert Pujols (2001), Carlos Delgado (1994) and Kent Hrbek (1982) who all had eight…Jose’s 27 RBI through April are tied for the most by a rookie in MLB history (Pujols, 2001)…he hit his first career grand slam last night, enjoyed his third career multi-homer game and had a career-high six RBI…Abreu’s three multi-homer games–through his first 24 career contests–are the most in baseball history…his homer and RBI totals are the most ever for a Sox player through his first 24 games…according to @ckamka: on Tuesday, No. 79 homered in his 79th at bat. (Photo illustration above is courtesy of @TheCover3).
Eyewitness to History
Abreu’s blast was the sixth walkoff grand slam at USCF. I’m happy to say that I’ve been here for all of them. Here are the other five.
Robin Ventura, July 31, 1991
Dave Martinez, June 3, 1995
Carlos Lee, June 8, 2001
Joe Crede, June 27, 2002
Alex Rios, September 10, 2011
Gillaspie to DL, Noesi Added to Roster
Conor Gillaspie has been placed on the 15-day disabled list with a left-hand contusion. RHP Hector Noesi, just picked up on waivers from the Rangers, has been added to the active roster.
Sox Notes of Note
The White Sox lead the American League in OPS (.774) and rank among the leaders in runs per game (2nd, 5.58), slugging percentage (2nd, .440), home runs (2nd, 30), average (2nd, .272) and doubles (T3rd, 46)…the Sox earned their fourth walkoff win this season and it was their 48th in U.S. Cellular Field history…Dayan Viciedo extended his hitting streak to seven games. He’s hitting .536 with four doubles, a home run and three RBI over that span…Ramirez has a six-game hitting streak and has hit safely in 23 out of 24 games this season including 11 multi-hit games…Tyler Flowers recorded his eighth multi-hit game of the season in last night’s game. He also drove in a pair…In relief of Erik Johnson, Jake Petricka went 2.2 scoreless innings, Zach Putnam had a career-high 2.2 scoreless frames and Ron Belisario has now made four consecutive scoreless appearances (6.0 IP)… Happy Birthday to World Champion White Sox, Joe Crede (36) and Geoff Blum (41). Here they are during the 2005 World Series parade. Blum is second from left, Crede is next to him in the Series cap.
Last Night: Good All the Way Around
Sox win on a walkoff homer, Blackhawks edge the Blues in OT to go up three games to two and the Bulls beat the Wizards on the road.
Classic Footage From Back in the Day
Quotes of the Day
Eaton on Abreu’s heroics:
“Yeah, it’s impressive. The proof’s in the pudding, I believe. He works his butt off every day, he comes in here, does what he needs to do to get ready and he goes out there and puts everything out on the field. It’s amazing, you feel like the whole place could kind of feel it. When he got up, it was like ‘Uh-oh, something great’s going to happen.'”
Rays manager Joe Maddon commenting on Konerko’s strong reaction last night to Aussie Grant Balfour‘s verbal outburst after they faced each other in the ninth inning.
“I guess Paulie speaks Australian.”
White Sox vs. Rays at U.S. Cellular Field (1:10 p.m., CT, CSN). Starters: TBA for the Sox, LHP David Price (3-1, 4.04) for Tampa Bay.
Photo of the Day