White Sox

Joe Maddon on what White Sox are getting with James Shields

Joe Maddon on what White Sox are getting with James Shields

While the Cubs were taking care of business on the field on Saturday afternoon, White Sox general manager Rick Hahn was doing the same off of it.

The White Sox acquired pitcher James Shields and cash from the San Diego Padres in exchange for Erik Johnson and Fernando Tatis Jr.

On paper, Shields' 2-7 record and 4.28 ERA in 11 starts this season doesn't exactly stand out — in large part due to his previous outing last weekend, in which he allowed a career-high 10 earned runs in 2 2/3 innings against the Seattle Mariners.

But if there's anyone qualified to give a thorough scouting report on the 34-year-old pitcher, it's Cubs skipper Joe Maddon, who managed Shields for seven years (from 2006 to 2012) while the two were in Tampa Bay.

Maddon credited Shields with setting the tone in the Tampa Bay locker room during the 2008 season, when the Rays won the American League pennant.

"He’s the guy that really set up the pitching mentality in Tampa Bay. (He has a) tremendous work ethic," Maddon said. "He set the work ethic among the starters. He was the guy that would be on the top step of the dugout when somebody else was pitching.

"As the group walked in, he really brought them together in that way."

That sounds exactly what Hahn & Co. were looking for when they pulled the trigger on this trade. A guy who wants to win.

"Competitively, (Shields is) off the charts," Maddon said. "My god, he just never wants to come out of a game. He thinks he can beat anybody. He’s got really good stuff.

"Good fastball, really good changeup. One of the better changeups I’ve had the pleasure of managing. He’s got a really good curveball, too. People don’t even know how good his curveball is."

Well, Robin Ventura and the White Sox are about to find out.

White Sox Talk Podcast: What it would take for the White Sox to sign Manny Machado

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USA TODAY

White Sox Talk Podcast: What it would take for the White Sox to sign Manny Machado

It might be a long shot for the White Sox to sign free agent Manny Machado, but here on the White Sox Talk Podcast, we like dark horses. Chuck Garfien, Ryan McGuffey and Vinnie Duber discuss what it would take to bring Machado to the South Side. Plus, is he "the" guy the White Sox are targeting this offseason? Will the Rockies listen to trade offers for Nolan Arenado a year before he reaches free agency? Plus, Chuck talks about a cost-controlled, All-Star on a rebuilding team that could be an answer at third base.

Listen to the full podcast here or via the embedded player below:

On this day in 2005: White Sox pitchers put the CG in Chicago

On this day in 2005: White Sox pitchers put the CG in Chicago

Mark Buehrle. Jon Garland. Freddy García. José Contreras.

The 2005 White Sox had four consecutive complete games to finish off the 2005 ALCS — Contreras took his turn in Game 5 against the Angels 13 years ago Tuesday. How special was that run of starting pitching to finish that series? Consider the following six statements:

— No team has had more than two complete games in a single postseason, let alone a postseason series, since.

— There has been a grand total of four complete games in 188 postseason games (through Monday) since the beginning of 2016.

— Those 2005 White Sox remain the only team with four complete games in a single LCS (which went to a best-of-seven format in 1985).

— They are the only team since the 1968 Tigers (in the World Series) with at least four complete games in any postseason series.

— They are the only team since the 1956 Yankees (in the World Series) with at least four consecutive complete games in a series. (The Yankees had five in a row: Games 3 through 7.)

— They are the only team since the 1928 Yankees (in the World Series) with at least four consecutive complete-game wins in a series (Games 1 through 4).

Take a moment to look back and appreciate what Don Cooper’s troops were able to accomplish in that series. The way the game is played nowadays, we will never see it again.