Robin Ventura believes Mike Piazza is the best offensive catcher in baseball history.
"He was that guy that nobody went to the bathroom when he was coming to the plate because you wanted to see where he was gonna hit it," Ventura said when he stopped by the Comcast SportsNet studios and AT&T U-verse Lounge Thursday.
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The White Sox skipper played alongside Piazza with the New York Mets for three seasons from 1990-2001.
Ventura formed a deadly middle of the order in the Big Apple in 1999, hitting fifth behind Piazza (who hit cleanup) and John Olerud (third). The trio combined for 91 homers and 340 RBI in leading the Mets to the National League Championship Series (which they lost to division rival Atlanta Braves).
Ventura also said Piazza deserves the Hall of Fame nomination he received earlier this month.
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As for Ken Griffey Jr., who also played in the same era as Ventura, the White Sox manager was stunned "The Kid" didn't collect 100 percent of the Hall of Fame votes (he fell three short).
So if Griffey couldn't obtain all of first ballot votes will anyone?
"Probably [Derek] Jeter," Ventura said. "He better, but if Junior can't that doesn't bode well for everybody else."
Check out the entire interview with Ventura in the video above.
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:
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.