White Sox

Sox Drawer: And the Winner Is....

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Sox Drawer: And the Winner Is....

Thursday, Jan. 28, 2010
6:25 PM

J.J. Putz has yet to throw a single pitch for the White Sox, but when he does, especially at US. Cellular Field, heres hoping he delivers it with a Razors Edge.

Yep, thats the grand prize winner of the J.J. Putz Song Contest: The Razors Edge by ACDC. J.J. is clearly a big fan of the Australian heavy metal band since his original song was Thunderstruck from the Razors Edge album.

The Sox Drawer inbox was flooded this week with hundreds of song ideas. Putz had narrowed it down to a select few. Knights of Cydonia by Muse was one song near the top. So were a few by Metallica. Actually, I think every song Metallica has ever recorded was suggested to J.J.

But as he put it in the Sox Drawer Innerview which you can click on the right, Once I heard Razors Edge...it was done.

There are two winners here. One is a guy by the name of Steve Cooper.

The other person is still a mystery since all heshe provided was an email address. Were still waiting for a reply. Bueller? Bueller? J.J. has decided to give both of them 4 tickets to any White Sox game this season. Congrats!

The Razors Edge might have been the winner of the contest, but considering the wide-ranging list of songs we received, I have decided to hand out my own awards:

The Most Popular Song Award: No contest. Hells Bells by ACDC. How about some originality people!

The Strangest Song Award: Well, this was definitely original, but a little strange. Sent in by Howard, who wrote:

I think that in honor of J.J.s birthday being on February 22nd, then an appropriate selection would be the theme from the old television sitcom Room 222.

Howard, I appreciate old TV sitcoms like the rest of them. Someone also sent in the theme song for Good Times, because of J.J. Walker. DYNO-MITE! But if Putz took the field to Room 222 night after night, he would not survive the season. That is unless he chose one of these:

The Are You Kidding Me? Award: (a tie) How Do I Live Without You by Leann Rimes and You Raise Me Up by Josh Groban.

The BestWorst Email Award: Rich, this is for you.

As soon as the bullpen opens, the fans hear the theme song from the movie Jaws! J.J. is not coming out of the bullpen, hes coming out of the Shark Pen! Im sure that when the opposing batters hear the theme from Jaws, it will scare the &@ out of them knowing that J.J. is coming out to devour them!

I shared this email with J.J. His response? Ummmno. But Rich, I like the creativity!

The He Almost Went For It Award: "Hail to the Victors". A couple of you sent in the fight song for the University of Michigan, J.J.s alma mater. Believe it or not, Putz strongly considered it, but said I just couldnt do it to the people of Chicago. J.J., thank you.

The You Had Me At Hello Award: There were a few songs that simply by their title had absolutely no chance. For instance, if youre a reliever coming into the game in the late innings, would you really want to hear Walk This Way by Aerosmith or Walk by Pantera? How about Im a Loser by Motorhead? We got all three of these.
The Honorary Ralph Macchio Award: For Youre the Best (Around) from the movie Karate Kid. I dont know about you, but I havent been the same since Daniel LaRusso knocked out Johnny Lawrence with the "Crane Kick."

The If It Was Up To Me Award: Born to Run by Bruce Springsteen. But thats just me.

Thanks to everyone who took part in the contest. Razors Edge might have been the victor, but hey...youre all winners!

White Sox Talk Podcast: The 10th anniversary of Mark Buehrle's perfect game

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NBC SPORTS CHICAGO

White Sox Talk Podcast: The 10th anniversary of Mark Buehrle's perfect game

Chuck Garfien and Steve Stone take a look back at Mark Buehrle's perfect game. How did Buehrle do it? How did Dewayne Wise make that catch?

Plus, Buehrle and A.J. Pierzynski talk about how Buehrle actually told Pierzynski before taking that field that day that he would throw a perfect game and more.

Listen to the entire podcast here or in the embedded player below.

White Sox Talk Podcast

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Yoan Moncada cleans up for White Sox: 'I think we found our No. 4 hitter'

Yoan Moncada cleans up for White Sox: 'I think we found our No. 4 hitter'

Though Jose Abreu and James McCann represented the team at the All-Star Game earlier this month, Yoan Moncada holds the title of the White Sox best hitter through the first 97 games of the 2019 season.

The guy who struck out 217 times during his first full season in the majors last year has been a completely different hitter this time around. Instead of looking lost at the plate, he’s the guy White Sox fans want to see at the plate in run-producing situations. He hasn’t spent much time in one of those traditional run-producing spots in the batting order, but manager Rick Renteria inserted Moncada into the cleanup spot Monday night.

And Moncada cleaned up, all right.

“I think we found our No. 4 hitter,” starting pitcher Ivan Nova said after he went the distance in a 9-1 waxing of the Miami Marlins. “A lot of times you get surprised. While he was hitting second, you're thinking and knowing, the type of hitter that he is — you're only thinking as a player, they have another way to think. But today, I think it was first time hit in fourth, and he showed.”

Moncada went 2-for-4 with the game’s biggest blow, a three-run homer in the fifth inning that blew things wide open. He drove in four runs on the night, and he flashed a potential glimpse of the future of this future-focused franchise.

Combining with Abreu, who went 2-for-3 with a two-run homer and three runs scored, Moncada showed what the middle of the order might look like for this team when rebuilding finally transitions to contending. That could come as soon as next year, and when you throw the currently injured Eloy Jimenez into that group, the White Sox could boast a fearsome 3-4-5 as soon as later this season.

“If someone is happy that we finally found a cleanup hitter, it’s me,” Abreu said through team interpreter Billy Russo. “Nothing that he does surprises me because I know all the talent he has. I know that he still can do more. He has been working hard. He’s a great baseball player with a lot of talent and I still think he can do more.

“What he did today is not a surprise for me. I still know he’s a great player and I think we’ve seen that throughout the whole season this year. He’s going to get better.”

Moncada has been sensational all season long, proving why the White Sox weren’t at all worried during his struggles in 2018. He owns a .304/.362/.530 slash line through these first 97 games, and his three-run blast Monday night gave him a new career high in that category after he smacked 17 a year ago. He’s six RBIs away from setting a new career high there, too. And even though he made a fielding error Monday that only briefly delayed Nova finishing off his complete-game effort, Moncada has been generally excellent at third base in his first season at that position as a big leaguer.

But putting Moncada in a run-producing spot in the order is a new wrinkle for Renteria this season. Coming into Monday’s game, Moncada had spent 63 games as the team’s No. 2 hitter and just 26 everywhere else. According to the skipper, Moncada is good enough to hit anywhere, and that’s certainly true. His eventual everyday spot in the lineup might have more to do with the hitters around him than simply what he can do by himself.

But if Moncada keeps up the kind of offensive production he’s churned out this season, maybe sticking him right in the thick of the order is what's best for the White Sox — even if those lineups of the future include big bats like those swung by Abreu, Jimenez, Luis Robert and Andrew Vaughn.

“For me, it's an advantage to hit in the cleanup spot having (Abreu) ahead of me,” Moncada said through Russo. “That way, you can see how the pitchers are attacking him, and you have a better idea, in those situations when you need to produce, how the pitchers are doing it. Even though he's a right-handed hitter and I hit from both sides of the plate, it's good. It's something that gives you a better idea of how the pitchers are doing, how their pitches are working.”

“He had a nice game,” Renteria said. “He can hit anywhere in the middle and the top of the order. I wish I could say I'm really a genius, but I'm not. He's got that talent. He's able to take advantage of it and today he had a nice day. He made everybody look good.”

It would make sense to see Moncada batting fourth again as this first homestand of the second half and the 2019 season roll on, but that’s up to Renteria, who has his reasons for every permutation to his lineups.

Of course, if Abreu gets ahold of Renteria's lineup card and starts writing out the batting orders, we’ll know where Moncada will be slotted.

“If I would have that decision,” Abreu said, “I would put him in the cleanup spot for the rest of the season.”

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