May 05, 2005

My White Sox

The Chicago White Sox are off to one of the best starts in team history. They lead all of baseball with a .750 winning percentage. Pitching is very solid... the team has an ERA of 2.94, second only to the Marlins. Jon Garland has been on fire. People are starting to get very excited around here. While I am extremely happy, I am far from excited.

Lemme tell ya why...

When I was a young lad (much like now, but younger), I got my first "stereo system" at the age of 14, 1981. My aunt gave me her old one. This thing got me hooked on White Sox baseball.

Every night, I listened to the games that were broadcast. I got to know all of the players, who was hot/not. Carlton Fisk became my hero. I rarely missed any games.

In '83, after the All Star break, the Sox were hot. The Series seemed like a very good possibility. I listened in awe as their new rookie, Ron Kittle, smacked 35 homers... towering shots! (BTW, if you didn't click that link, check it out... he's a hell of a man) They ended up winning the American League West by 20 games. LaMarr Hoyt won the AL Cy Young Award with his 24 wins. They cruised into the ALCS where they were dispatched by the Baltimore Orioles, who later went on to win the World Series. I was crushed.

In '93, the Sox win another division title, but lose to Toronto in the ALCS. I had followed these guys as much as I could, which wasn't all that much considering I was in the Marines at the time. What little bit of time I had for television was spent on cartoons and baseball. Again, crushed.

The following year, '94 (unless your calendar is different from mine), I seriously thought that the Sox had a chance to go all the way. And it wasn't just me... they were the talk of baseball until the strike shortened the season. If you see a Sox game on television, check out the stands... not totally empty, but far from filled... a by product of the strike. Sox fans don't forgive. I was pissed.

Our next chance was in 2000. The Sox took the Central Division, and were then swept by the Seattle Mariners in the AL Division Series. It was a great season, but by now, I'd gotten to realize that the Series isn't an easy thing to come by just because you have a great year.

Here we are in this year. They've got a great start, but I can't get overly excited... their hitting hasn't been what's winning games. As I said before, the pitching has been great so far. When it comes to hitting, they are almost in the bottom third of the league. ( I'm pretty sure that they were ranked at 19, but it's getting late, and I don't want to check anymore stats.) Things need to pick up if they are going to be a serious threat, at least to my mind.

One thing that I am a little excited about is the possibility of an '83 rematch. The Orioles are hot right now, also. If the Sox can make it all the way through this season in first place, I would like to see the O's right there with them... only to get crushed under the Sox's heels. God, that'd be great!

But I've got to be a realist, and while I hope for the best for my team, I've got to know that it's not likely that it's going to come about. I hope I haven't jinxed them by writing this! (Speaking of being a realist!)

Posted by That 1 Guy at May 5, 2005 11:20 PM | TrackBack