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A Blowout! (finally)

(July 21)

Short Take:  Did J.B.'s price just jump?

Somewhere in the darkest corner of every Sox Fan's mind that evil voice of self-doubt is whispering with more persistence than ever before.  The nightmarish 2001 season is only 60 percent completed by our fondest championship aspirations lie in the ditch, mortally wounded.  That voice whispers, "It's only a matter of time." 

When life serves you nothing but lemons, dammit make lemonade!  That's exactly what Sox Fans are thinking after a blowout victory Saturday afternoon, 10-3 victors over the Red Sox.

A crowd of over 29,000 fans was liberally sprinkled with major league scouts representing contending teams, vultures eager to pick through the bones of the White Sox carcass.  They mostly had their eyes set on starter James Baldwin but other prominent names have been mentioned, too.  After the shellacking given Boston, the price of all of them ought to have gone up.

Baldwin seemed ready to spot Boston the same early lead advantage they enjoyed Friday, letting the first four batters of the game reach base.  He squirmed out of it with just two runs scored.  It proved the turning point of the game.

Baldwin held Boston scoreless the next two innings setting the stage for a Sox power surge the likes of which haven't been seen in over a month.  Aaron Rowand reached on an infield single that the national TV crew couldn't replay often enough to demonstrate Boston's bad luck.

Please.  NOBODY has had worse luck than our Sox, 84 years and counting, you numbskulls!

A single, a walk, and a strikeout (with no help from any umpire's faux pas) left Jeff Liefer with a bases loaded at-bat.  He walked home a run making the score 2-1 Boston.

Paul Konerko was next.  Here's the set up every Sox Fans dreads from their 2001 team.  Having scored one piddly run, that little voice of doubt again whispers "slow-footed Konerko grounds into a double-play, the inning ends, we're still down one run, and we won't score again unless we're down by five runs."

Not this time!  Paul Konerko, himself the subject of numerous trade rumors, took a 1-1 pitch deep into the left field seats for a grand slam.  The Sox ahead 5-2, they would never look back.  It was just the sort of clutch hit missing from the Sox attack in clutch games all season long.  Of course given the Sox's current deficit in the standings, it's debatable whether this truly was a clutch game, but why quibble?  Konerko looked good rounding the bases and all those scouts were making notes in their scorebooks.

Looking for more Sox heroes?  How about Aaron Rowand?  The rookie got the start in center field and had his best day ever in the big show, 4 for 5 with a walk and an rbi.  Do you think Boston might need to figure out a new way to pitch this kid?  The patience of Magglio Ordonez was rewarded with three walks, a 1 for 3 day at the plate.

Even Royce Clayton got two hits.  His average is up to .214!!!

Meanwhile James Baldwin had the scouts on their cell phones calling the home office.  After that near-disaster first inning, Baldwin threw into the seventh inning with 124 pitches.  Did we mention is was 97 degrees at game time?  "Ah yeah boss, I think we might need to toss in another prospect if we plan to land Baldwin."

Marvelous.  Gary Glover plowed through what remained of the Red Sox for the last 2.2 innings and Sox Fans were left to smile at what good might come of this crappy season.

Sox Clubhouse "Pick to Click" Winner

Paul Konerko

Did his trade value just go up, too?  1 for 2 plus three walks and the key blow to score the tying and go-ahead runs, a grand slam in the seven-run third inning to launch the Sox to victory!

Play WSI's Pick to Click Contest!

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