Monday, August 14, 2006

And Now For Something Completely Different: Ladies and Gentlemen, the Newest Member of Jeeves' Chi-Sox Blog -- Pander!

Sox Upset The Royals In A Nailbiter!

Sox Win 5th Straight!

Carl von Clausewitz famously decreed that a well-laid plan will only last so far as the initial contact with an enemy on the field of battle. While we may expect and plan around a White Sox victory against the Royals, when the lights come up and the baseballs start flying, anything can happen. Lowly Toronto would beat the Michael-led Bulls back in 1996 during a regular season game when nobody in the world would have bet money on them. The '69 Mets making the playoffs wasn't in the gameplan for many Cubs fans (btw: Hahahahaha!). And therefore to look past Kansas City was an invitation to disastor, with the possibility of Jon Garland giving up four hundred earned runs in a third of an inning, with Jermaine Dye tearing his ACL and a stray Cessna carrying a banner flying around The Cell would crash into the Sox dugout, creating a blazing inferno that would consume the entire bench after igniting Ozzie's hair gel.

Well, fortunately, the absurd didn't happen, and the guys out on the field actually paid attention to the Royals. Despite some sigh-inducing offense early on, including a failed attempt to cash in on a 1st/3rd 0 outs situation, things were hopeful. Jon Garland kept things paced nicely, allowing roughly one harmless hit per inning, every inning. Then came the bottom of the 4th, and with it, the Curse of Mark Buehrle awoke. Looking around, The Curse squinted, and saw a silhouette of a crafty lefty named Mark without over-powering stuff on the mound. "Good enough," it thought, and inhabited his body for 2 glorious 3rds of an inning. It started innocently with a couple hits, but the HBP on Jermaine was a bit scary. Seeing him walk off a Mark Redman shinburner was promising, hopefully it's just a bruise. Anyway, after an indeterminate time spent batting the ball around with careless abondon, Paul Konerko decided to keep Jonny Hollywood's head in the game by flying out follow Thome's four-bagger. That was the only 'wasted' at bat of the inning, with every other batted ball either falling for a hit or advancing runners (We have to point that out, so as to make Pablo feel a little better about his otherwise toothless night).

Speaking of "four-b
agger," is that DJ's official homer catchphrase? I mean, it's nice and all that he's not copying Hawk's eye-rolling shouts of "Stretch!" or "Get up!" (get on up and DANCE!) or the classic put it on the board, but hearing his "Bye-bye, a four-bagger for..." reminds me far too much of the YES tools "SEE YA", completely lame.

As far as the game went after that inning, one word sums it up: boring. Boring in a good way, though. It was simply a matter of getting the Royals to swing at balls, generate outs, and make the game end with a W. Along the way there was a Brian Anderson blast (he likes them high straight pitches), some nice hitting by our lefties in the 7th inning, and some lazy relief without any major scares. It's a great game to not watch, but rather absorb like some calming psychotropic drug. You just zone out, watching innings zoom by, and then feel giddy when the win is posted by a lazy fly to center.

And my White Sox Player of the Game:

Brian Anderson (5)

In a game in which almost any member of our lineup, or Jon Garland, could have earned this for consistent production, Brian wins it by virtue of having the most hits, knocking out a bomb farther than Jim Thome, and taking the team's only walk of the night. His hits weren't the most clutch, but watching him at the plate was more fun than anyone else on this night. Still, big ups to everyone, including Pabl-0-fer, who at least made a wonderful diving catch, which surprised him as much as anyone (never you mind the fact he bobbled two balls Joe would have turned into outs while playing 3rd). Follow this performance up twice, and we're suddenly back where we were in May, close behind Detroit, and in the driver's seat for the wild card. Not a bad place to be with Jon, Freddy, Mark, Javier, and Jose all throwing the ball well. Wait...that's our entire lineup! When's the last time that happened? Oh yeah, last year's playoffs.

(Editor's Note: Since everyone seems to like BA as the player of the game including Jonathan Kelley, DickdaStick and Pander, I'm gonna make he and Garland co-players of the game. By the way, nice job, Pander, on this recap! I look forward to more. -- James)


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