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In honor of actor Andy Garcia and his (unintentionally) hilarious reaction to Sofia (Mary Corleone) Coppola's death scene in "The Godfather, Part III."
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June 22,1976

Posted 03-23-2018 at 07:19 PM by TommyJohn
Updated 08-18-2019 at 10:29 AM by TommyJohn

June 22,1976
vs. Kansas City Royals
at Royals Stadium

The White Sox went to KC to meet up with the first place Royals, who were threatening to dethrone five-time AL West champ Oakland, who was lagging 9 1/2 games behind. The Sox mercifully put their 10 game losing streak to a stop with a 11 inning, 2-1 win on the 21st.

The next night Jesse Jefferson took the mound for a rare start, carrying a line of 1-2 and an ERA of 6.83. His mound opponent was Steve Busby, who was nursing a sore shoulder.

The Sox jumped on Busby right away, with Jim Spencer taking him deep for a three run home run in the top of the 1st.

The big hit of the night came in the top of the 3rd. The Sox loaded up the bases with two out to bring up 20 year old rookie infielder Kevin Bell, one of several young players who Bill Veeck was touting as the future face of the franchise. Bell stepped into a pitch and smacked a drive to deep left field. Royal left fielder Tom Poquette, the team's best hitter, drew a bead on the ball but lost his location bearing and crashed face first into the wall. Poquette crumpled to the ground unconscious while the ball bounded away. Bell circled the bases for an inside-the-park grand slam, the first such hit in Sox history since Carlos May's drive in September, 1971. The game was then delayed for several minutes while Royal trainers attended to Poquette and carted him off on a stretcher.

Jorge Orta continued the hitting outburst in the 4th by cracking another home run, this one with Chet Lemon on base to stake the Sox to a 9-0 lead.

Jefferson, however, began to crack, giving up three runs in the bottom of the 4th, the big blow a 2 run double by Amos Otis. Al Cowens drove in another run in the 5th to make it 9-4.

The Sox struck back in the 6th, when Ralph Garr smacked a two run triple and scored on a sacrifice fly by Jorge Orta to make it 12-4.

Jeff gave up one more run in the 6th before being hooked in favor of Pete Vukovich, who gave up one more run charged to Jefferson.

The Sox scored two more runs and held off the Royals, who scored two more runs before Dave Hamilton held them off to secure a 14-8 win.

Ralph Garr was filled with praise for Kevin Bell. "That Bell is nothing but a plus for this team" he told the Tribune's Bill Jauss. "Twenty years old and he hits and fields and throws like that! One problem that we don't have is to look for a third baseman for the next 20 years or so."

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