White Sox

Carlos Rodon flashes ace potential in White Sox win over Angels

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Carlos Rodon flashes ace potential in White Sox win over Angels

Was this Carlos Rodon’s best outing since joining the White Sox?

“I think so,” Robin Ventura said.

The manager couldn’t help but answer that question in the affirmative after Rodon turned in a sensational effort in Tuesday night’s 3-0 White Sox win over the Angels at U.S. Cellular Field.

The rookie struck out 11 batters in seven shutout innings, the first time he did either in his brief major league career, and yielded just four hits. After giving up a combined 19 runs in three of his last four starts, Tuesday night was about as good a bounce back as he could’ve scripted.

[MORE WHITE SOX: In 'frustrating' season, Hahn doesn't want to write off White Sox yet]

Rodon got in a little trouble early, allowing the first two Angels hitters of the night to reach in front of baseball’s best player, Mike Trout. But Rodon struck out Trout, then struck out another All Star in Albert Pujols before getting Erick Aybar to fly out to end the threat. And it was pretty smooth sailing from there, as only three more players reached base against the rookie over the next six innings.

“That’s not a good position for anybody to be in, but he handled it great,” Ventura said. “He was able to bounce back. I thought composure and competitiveness and everything that’s he’s got, he had to put it in to that because it’s not a good spot to be in. He got out of that one and continued from there and really pounded the zone. I think command, he was getting ahead and getting guys swinging late. Really impressive stuff from Ro after the last couple haven’t been his best. But this is a great performance to bounce back and do this.”

"That's probably one of the best three-four hitters in the game right there, and that's a tough lineup for sure,” Rodon said of that first-inning jam. “I knew going in they were going to be patient, and (Shane) Victorino’s a vet, so good at-bat. Then (Kole) Calhoun hits that slider opposite way, went the other way with it, and then I just knew I had to pound the zone, go after (Trout).”

[MORE WHITE SOX: Adam LaRoche back to bench as season-long slump continues]

By night’s end, Rodon set a new career high in strikeouts and innings pitched and became the first White Sox rookie pitcher to put up multiple double-digit strikeout games since Jason Bere did it in 1993.

“It’s probably his best outing, and it’s a good one to build on for him after a couple of tough ones,” catcher Tyler Flowers said. “Get that confidence rolling again. He’s definitely a No. 1 type kind of guy.”

While Rodon was silencing the Angels, the White Sox offense took care of another All Star, former teammate Hector Santiago. Santiago was perfect the first time through the White Sox order, but after surrendering his first hit to Tyler Saladino, he hit Jose Abreu with a pitch and coughed up a two-run double to birthday boy Melky Cabrera.

An inning later, Trayce Thompson took his former minor league teammate deep for his first major league home run.

[SHOP WHITE SOX: Get your White Sox gear right here]

Between Rodon’s gem, Thompson’s homer and great defense from Saladino at third base, it was a pretty great night for the rookies.

“Anytime you get it from young guys, there's some energy, there's some life to it,” Ventura said. “Again, it's special when a guy gets his first hit, his first win, first homer. Guys respond to that. They understand how special that is, and everybody's happy for them. But there's something added to it, especially when you win.”

Winning hasn’t been in as abundant a supply as the White Sox would’ve hoped this season, but Tuesday’s victory meant back-to-back wins for the South Siders, the first time that’s happened since the end of that seven-game winning streak on July 29.

General manager Rick Hahn refused to wave the white flag on the 2015 season Monday, and games like Monday’s and Tuesday’s — with their dominant pitching performances and solid offensive contributions, not to mention great defense — show you why there’s still that glimmer of hope.

White Sox Talk Podcast: Memories of Old Comiskey Park

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AP

White Sox Talk Podcast: Memories of Old Comiskey Park

For many White Sox fans, Comiskey Park was their introduction to White Sox baseball when they were young. Chuck Garfien, Ryan McGuffey, and Chris Kamka share their memories of the old ballpark. Among them: Chuck talks about seeing Al Cowens charge Ed Farmer on the mound in 1980 creating a bench clearing brawl, Ryan tells the story about catching a Mike Greenwell foul ball, Chuck talks about being there for the 1983 All-Star Game, they discuss the final game ever played there and read favorite memories sent in by White Sox fans.

You can listen to the whole thing right here, or in the embedded player below.

8:26 - Chuck talks about seeing Al Cowens charge Ed Farmer on the mound in 1980 creating a bench clearing brawl.

10:11 - Ryan tells the story about catching a Mike Greenwell foul ball.

12:49 - Chuck talks about being there for the 1983 All-Star Game

15:11 - The guys talk about the final game ever played there.

16:44 - The guys read favorite memories sent in by White Sox fans.

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'White Sox to the Letter'

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AP

'White Sox to the Letter'

Inspired by Ogden Nash’s 1949 poem “A Lineup for Yesterday”

 

A is for A.J.

Once punched in the face

If strike three ain’t caught

He’ll steal first base

 

B is for Baines

Who’s known to speak gently

When asked if he’ll homer

He said, “Evidently!”

 

C for Comiskey

The old baseball yard

When it was torn down

I took it quite hard

 

D is for Donkey

I mean Adam Dunn

He’d strike out or walk

Or hit a home run

 

E is for Eloy

He isn’t here yet

Though an All-Star career

Is still a good bet

 

F is for Fisk

The incomparable Pudge

From his perch behind home

Not an inch he would budge

 

G is for Gold

G is for Glove

Aparicio is

Who I’m thinking of

 

H is for Hawk

Unforgettable voice

Stretch! Dadgummit!

And don’t stop now boys!

 

I for Iguchi

Second base man

Won World Series

Returned to Japan

 

J is for Jackson

The legend still grows

A home run or touchdown

Only Bo knows

 

K is for Kopech

Speed, he has plenty

He’ll pile up strikeouts

In two thousand twenty

 

L is for Luke

Old Aches and Pains

Hit .388

That record remains

 

M is for Mark

As in Mister Buehrle

When he takes the mound

The game will end early

 

N is for no-no

Wilson Alvarez, Humber

Two by Mark Buehrle

Too many to number

 

O for Orestes

Miñoso’s real name

Not in the Hall

And that’s a real shame

 

P is for Paulie

He gave it his all

At the championship rally

Gave Jerry the ball

 

Q for Quintana

Kept coming up short

Only because

Of no run support

 

R is for Richie

But please call him Dick

A dangerous man

When he’s swinging the stick

 

S is for shoes

Which were not worn by Joe

In 1919

Please say it ain’t so

 

T is for Thomas

Amazing career

He went to the Hall

And brewed Big Hurt Beer

 

U for Uribe

He played everywhere

When the ball left his bat

Hands waved in the air

 

V is for Veeck

He knew how to sell

Fireworks, promotions

And Eddie Gaedel

 

W is for William

Or Bill; He was Beltin’

So hot was the corner

Third baseman was Melton

 

X is for Fox

At least the last letter

Among second basemen

Nobody was better

 

Y is for Yolmer

He has sneaky power

The master of giving

A Gatorade shower

 

Z is for Zisk

And others I missed

Unable to fit

In my White Sox list