OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The Chicago White Sox have been getting some stellar pitching on their West Coast road trip.Two days after White Sox teammate Phil Humber pitched the 21st perfect game in major league history, Jake Peavy followed with his own gem.Peavy pitched a three-hitter, Adam Dunn and Paul Konerko hit back-to-back homers and Chicago beat the Oakland Athletics 4-0 on Monday night for its fourth straight victory.Peavy allowed only a leadoff single to Jemile Weeks in the fourth inning, a double to Yoenis Cespedes in the seventh and a single to Coco Crisp in the ninth. The 2007 NL Cy Young Award winner walked two and faced only four batters more than the minimum."I kind of expect it," White Sox manager Robin Ventura said. "It might be unfair to say stuff like that but he's that good."Peavy (3-0) needed 107 pitches to handcuff the A's, the lowest-scoring team in the American League. Since drawing a no-decision against Texas in his first start this season, Peavy has a 1.19 ERA over his last 22 2-3 innings."You always want to finish what you start," said Peavy of his sixth career shutout. "I felt good tonight. Other than the fourth I didn't have any crazy, stressful innings."The only time Peavy ran into trouble came after Weeks' single in the fourth. He walked the next batter, Crisp, but got Josh Reddick to hit into a double play and then retired Cespedes on a foul pop to the catcher.The shutout extended Peavy's scoreless streak to 14 innings and helped the White Sox move into a first-place tie with idle Detroit in the AL Central."(Peavy) was establishing the zone away," Weeks said. "Once you do that it's hard to take care of the whole plate."Alex Rios added three hits for Chicago, while Brent Morel had two hits and scored a run.Oakland starter Bartolo Colon (3-2) scattered seven hits over seven innings and fell short in his bid to become the first four-game winner in the majors.Dunn homered on the first pitch from Colon leading off the fourth, a towering shot to left. Konerko followed with a drive to center, the 399th home run of his career.That ended Colon's shutout streak of 18 1-3 innings and gave Peavy more than enough room to work with.Colon, who threw 38 consecutive strikes in his previous start against the Angels, put together another streak of 20 straight during one stretch and got the White Sox to ground into three double plays.With no run support, though, it didn't matter."It was similar to what we've seen, a lot of strikes," Oakland manager Bob Melvin said. "To give up just two to that team, you're giving your team a chance to win."Oakland has been shut out a league-leading four times already this season and has scored just 52 runs through 18 games. That's the second-fewest in the majors behind Pittsburgh, which has 30 runs in 15 games.Chicago added a pair of insurance runs in the ninth on RBI singles by Gordon Beckham and A.J. Pierzynski.The loss spoiled the A's debut of third baseman Luke Hughes.Hughes, claimed off waivers from Minnesota a day earlier, arrived in Oakland about two hours before the first pitch and was immediately put into the starting lineup. He got off to a shaky start with his new team, committing a pair of throwing errors.NOTES: Konerko started at DH rather than first base because of the expansive foul ground in Oakland. He's also still nursing a sore right foot after taking a foul ball off it during the Seattle series. ... Oakland manager Bob Melvin said the A's plan to call up Jarrod Parker from the minors to start Wednesday's series finale. ... To make room for Hughes, the A's optioned INF Josh Donaldson to Triple-A Sacramento. Donaldson entered spring training as a backup catcher but was moved to third base after Scott Sizemore's season-ending knee injury during the team's first full-squad workout. ... RHP Gavin Floyd (1-2), who has won three of his four starts against Oakland, pitches for Chicago on Tuesday. Tommy Milone (2-1) goes for the A's.
Want to get a cool-looking White Sox T-shirt and support an important cause at the same time?
You're in luck.
The White Sox announced Friday that they're selling T-shirts with a pair of limited-edition designs to support the Chicago Community COVID-19 Response Fund.
The shirts, sporting elements of the White Sox logos, the Chicago city flag and the slogan "Chicago Together," went on sale at whitesox.com/chicagotogether at 10 a.m. Friday morning.
The Sox are selling these limited-edition T-shirts, with proceeds benefiting the Chicago Community COVID-19 Response Fund. They go on sale at 10 a.m. Central at https://t.co/8nnbwrk1vB. pic.twitter.com/c8338O4deW— Vinnie Duber (@VinnieDuber) May 29, 2020
As the White Sox mentioned in their announcement, the Chicago Community COVID-19 Response Fund is a collaboration with the City of Chicago, The Chicago Community Trust and United Way of Metro Chicago that disburses funds to local nonprofit organizations serving the region’s most vulnerable neighbors. In March, the White Sox and the Bulls commited $200,000 to support the fund.
NBC Sports Chicago put on the "Be Chicago" fundraiser show to support the Chicago Community COVID-19 Response Fund. You can watch that show in its entirety right here.
If you were paying really close attention during Game 2 of the ALCS, you saw it.
One fan in the stands at U.S. Cellular Field was hoisting a sign that perfectly summed up how the White Sox scored their runs during a 99-win regular season and during a march to the World Series.
“Small ball, Paul ball, over-the-wall ball.”
Small ball was rebranded “Ozzie ball” by these White Sox, who reaped the rewards of Kenny Williams’ bold offseason trade. The general manager shipped away a productive slugger, Carlos Lee, for a speed demon on the base paths, Scott Podsednik. Lee was pretty darn good at swinging the stick. But the White Sox craved balance in their lineup, and with Podsednik’s base-stealing ability causing chaos at the top of the order, they got it and scored more runs in the first inning than any other during the 2005 season.
Paul ball, well that’s obvious. Paul Konerko was the team’s MVP in 2005. He smashed 40 homers for the second straight season and hit triple digits in RBIs for the third time in his career. He was particularly potent during the second half, helping to prevent a complete free fall out of first place with the Cleveland Indians charging in September.
And over-the-wall ball? Well, as balanced as the White Sox lineup was thanks to Podsednik’s arrival, the South Siders still hit a lot of home runs. Seven different hitters launched at least 15 dingers. Even Podsednik, who had zero of them during the regular season, got in on the power display in the playoffs, hitting one in the ALDS and a walk-off homer in the World Series.
Fast forward two nights from when that sign was lifted up on the South Side, and you saw the White Sox follow that script to a “T” in Southern California.
In the first 17.2 innings of the ALCS, the White Sox scored three measly runs. A tip of the cap to the Angels’ pitching staff, but this was not the same production from a lineup that mauled the Red Sox during the first round of the playoffs. Then A.J. Pierzynski swung, missed and ran to first base and the White Sox offense woke up. Over the course of the next five White Sox hitters to step to the plate — Joe Crede’s walk-off double to finish Game 2 and the first four batters of Game 3 — the White Sox scored four runs.
How’d they do it against John Lackey in Game 3? How do you think?
Podsednik did his thing at the top of the lineup and got on base with a leadoff hit. Then Tadahito Iguchi bunted him into scoring position ahead of Jermaine Dye’s RBI double. Paul Konerko followed with a solo homer slammed into the left-field seats — the beginning of a three-hit, three-RBI night for him — and the White Sox had a crooked number on the board. Just like that.
Small ball, Paul ball, over-the-wall ball.
Of course, this all leaves out the most important ingredient in the White Sox success that season and in this series, in particular: starting pitching. While the offense took a while to wake up in the ALCS, the pitching was on point from “go.” Jose Contreras threw 8.1 innings in Game 1. Mark Buehrle allowed just one run in nine innings in Game 2. And Jon Garland followed with the second of what would be four straight complete-game efforts by White Sox starters in this series.
Though there was more to come, with Freddy Garcia and Contreras going the distance in Games 4 and 5, through three games, White Sox starters had already turned in an impressive string of games, allowing just six runs in 26.1 innings for a 2.05 ERA.
But as good as the pitching was — and it was out-of-this-world good — the White Sox needed to get back to their run-scoring ways following the quiet offensive performances in Games 1 and 2. They did just that, and not until Game 4 of the World Series did they score fewer than five runs.
When it came to how they scored those runs moving forward, the sign didn’t lie.
Small ball? Podsednik wrecked havoc the very next night in Game 4 of the ALCS, reaching base four times (thrice via the walk), stole a pair of bases and scored two runs.
Paul ball? Konerko had more damage to do, with at least one hit in each of the next five playoff games, including an unforgettable grand slam in Game 2 of the World Series.
Over-the-wall ball? The White Sox hit three homers in the final two games of the ALCS, then six more in the World Series, including iconic shots from Konerko, Podsednik and Geoff Blum.
So there are a few hundred words on the subject. But did I really do any better with all those words than that fan did with eight?
“Small ball, Paul ball, over-the-wall ball.”
Keep reliving the White Sox march to the 2005 World Series with #SoxRewind, which features Game 4 of the ALCS, airing at 7 p.m. Friday on NBC Sports Chicago.