New York Yankees

As the regular season for Major League Baseball comes to a close this weekend, stuff (thank god for the White Sox faithful), cure the race to the playoffs is still on.  In the American League (AL) picture, the Kansas City Royals have clinched the Central division title, the Toronto Blue Jays secured their playoff spot with the division title in the East and the New York Yankees have solidified the first wild card spot.  What’s still up for grabs is the Western division title and the second wild card spot.

Currently in the West you have the Texas Rangers, who guaranteed themselves a spot in the postseason last night with a win over the Los Angeles Angels.  The Angels, with that loss, were eliminated from the division race, but they, along with the Minnesota Twins, still have an outside shot at the second AL Wild Card spot.  The Rangers have all but locked down the division with a three game lead over the Houston Astros with three games to play, meaning Texas would have to lose all three of their games while the Astros would have to win out just to force a one-game playoff for the division crown.  Maybe this isn’t the most probable scenario, but as a fan, being able to watch that exciting tie-breaker is something I’m rooting for.

To this day, nothing beats the Chicago White Sox “Blackout” game of 2008 for the AL Central division title against the Minnesota Twins.  Prior to the game, the White Sox and the Twins ended their regular season with equal 88-74 records.  I was lucky enough to score a ticket to this game and it was the greatest baseball game I had ever seen.  There was an excitement in the air at the ball park that was electrifying! The game had excellent pitching by John Danks, who pitched into the 7th inning and a rock-solid closing performance by Bobby Jenks.  The White Sox fielding was amazing including an outstanding defensive play by Ken Griffey Jr. and A. J. Pierzynski teaming up to throw out Michael Cuddyer at home plate.  The White Sox went on to win the game 1-0 on the strength of a solo home run by Jim Thome in the 7th inning.

The reason it was call the “blackout” game was because the nearly 40,000 fans in attendance were encouraged to wear all black during the game to show their support for the team.  I was also told that it was called the blackout game because it was the only game being played in the MLB that night and the outfield MLB scoreboard was blacked out.

What made the blackout game more memorable than any other game in recent history was that White Sox fans were able to celebrate an amazing victory with the team they all loved at home.  As you may remember, the White Sox clinched both the Central Division and World Series Championships on the road three years prior, so for fans this was a time to celebrate with the team and boy did we celebrate with “high-fives” dance-offs in the stands and a big salute from the players.

With a few more regular season scenarios to be play out this weekend, we can rest soundly knowing that October baseball is upon us and baseball fans are in for an exciting post-season.

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Ladies, find it’s been a while – but I’m back.  Let me start by thanking The White Sox organization for case May 23rd vs. New York Yankees” href=”http://sportsdivasinc.com/2014/05/white-sox-host-annual-ladies-night-friday-may-23rd-vs-new-york-yankees/” target=”_blank”>a wonderful Ladies Night!  It was a night that included a walk-off home run, fireworks, massages and the beautiful Derek Jeter.  I talked to fathers/mothers and daughters, couples and just girls hanging out.  I met ladies from out of town who wanted to enjoy the city so they chose US Cellular and they definitely chose the right night.  Well done White Sox, you sure know how to treat a lady!  Now back to baseball…

From Ladies Night on May 23rd

From Ladies Night on May 23rd

Now that we have recovered from the devastating Blackhawks loss and there are over 90 days before football, baseball is in the spotlight and what a time to be there with the return of Chris Sale and Jose Abreu; both of them made an impact in their return.  The Sox continue to hover at or around .500 and are fighting for playoff position in their division (four games back) as well as in the wild card race (one game back).

Quick Review:  The Sox have split the first two games of the series against the L.A. Dodgers.  Losing the first game thanks to errors by Gordan Beckham and Conor Gillaspie.  The south side superstar Jose Abreu has homered in consecutive games, this man is on a mission and knows that there is more he can do when he improves at the plate. The Sox finished the home stand 6-4 with a masterful complete game victory by the ace Chris Sale.  The south siders also swept the Indians and split the 4-game series with the Yankees.

Chris Sale

Chris Sale

News:  To make room for the return of Jose Abreu the Sox optioned Marcus Semien to triple A Charlotte where he may begin working in the outfield to become an even more flexible player.  Alexei Ramirez is second in American League All-Star voting, trailing the great Derek Jeter.  The White Sox could be looking at sending three players to the mid-season classic, way to go fellas!

Alexei Ramirez All-Star?

Alexei Ramirez All-Star?

What’s Next:  The Sox will continue their west coast trip with two more games against the Dodgers and new left fielder and might I add beautiful Matt Kemp and three against the L.A. Angels

New left fielder and a little disgruntled Dodger, Matt Kemp

New left fielder and a little disgruntled Dodger, Matt Kemp

My Thoughts: I don’t’ know about you, but hovering around .500 and fighting for playoff position is a pleasant surprise.  As Rick Hahn and the Sox were putting together this team I didn’t think they would be competitive and who knows where they’ll end up because there’s still time for a swoon.

White Sox Black Triblend Women's T Shirt with Distressed White Vertical "Sox" Logo by Fifth and Ocean, Clark Street Sports: $34.99

White Sox Black Triblend Women’s T Shirt with Distressed White Vertical “Sox” Logo by Fifth and Ocean, Clark Street Sports: $34.99

 

Their bullpen is still suspect due to injuries and their defense can still cost them a game, but it just doesn’t feel like they’ll go through a terribly long losing streak like the Boston Red Sox.  The Sox are exciting to watch because you never know what can happen or who will be the star.  What makes this resurgence even better?  It was done the right way; with a mix of youth and veterans who can teach the young players how to win and persevere through hard times.  I’m not going to guarantee an above .500 record or a playoff berth, but I will guarantee this team will keep you on your toes, delight and anger you.  It’s baseball baby and it’s one of the greatest reality TV shows, so sit back and enjoy every twist and turn.

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Looking for a place to hang out with your girls this Friday night? I’ve got one for you – it’s capsule May 23rd vs. New York Yankees” href=”http://sportsdivasinc.com/2014/05/white-sox-host-annual-ladies-night-friday-may-23rd-vs-new-york-yankees/” target=”_blank”>Ladies Night at US Cellular on Friday, search May 23rd.  The game starts at 7:10 pm, and but get there early for the activities like:   Zumba, massage therapy, discount shopping at Chicago Sports Depot, Girl Band performs and a lucky lady and three of her friends will be randomly selected to take a picture on the field.

After all of that fun you get to see the White Sox take on the New York Yankees when the Yankees begin their 3-game series at the Cell after wrapping up on the North Side against the Cubs. This will be the last time you’ll find Mr. Derek Jeter play at games at the Cell, before baseball’s most eligible bachelor retires from the game.  Get a big group together for a perfect girls night out with music, food, drinks, baseball, fireworks and plenty of eye candy on the field!  For heavily discounted tickets to this premiere matchup, head over to www.whitesox.com/ladies

The White Sox are still under .500 at 22-24 and are eight games behind Central Division leading Detroit Tigers.  They definitely didn’t take full advantage of their schedule last week.

Week In Review:  The Sox took game one of the 3-game series at Kansas City Royals thanks to a go ahead 2-run home run by Paul Konerko.  His improving offense will be needed in Jose Abreu’s absence.  The south siders lost two of three against the team with the worst record in the American League, the Houston Astros.  They also lost 2 out of 3 against the hottest team the Oakland Athletics.  They lost games and their young star Jose Abreu.

Micah Johnson

Micah Johnson

Sox Notes:  Jose Abreu was placed on the 15-day disabled list with ankle tendinitis.  The Sox were relieved after getting the MRI results that it is nothing more to the injury.  He will remain on anti-inflammatory medication and wear a walking boot and there is no timeline for his return.  To take his place on the roster the Sox activated the sparkplug Adam Eaton.

Chris Sale continues his rehab and a decision on his return date could come after his next bullpen session.  Closer Matt Lindstrom left Monday’s game with a leg injury he suffered trying to field a bunt.  The Sox are hoping they will not have to add him to the list of the walking wounded.  Jeff Keppinger was designated for assignment and it may cost the team $7.5 million but with the emergence of the youngsters it was a move that needed to be made.  In triple A news, 2nd baseman Micah Johnson was promoted to Charlotte and is looking good on and off the field.

What’s On Deck:  After finishing up in KC the Sox will come home for four games against the Yankees.  May 23rd is Ladies Night and fireworks, May 24th is Chris Sale bobblehead and May 25th is Family Day.

Much improved Alexei Ramirez

Much improved Alexei Ramirez

My Thoughts:  Even the Sox aren’t much better record wise this year there is still something different about this team that gives you hope (not including this past week).  The defense isn’t great, but it is still much better than last year (couldn’t get much worse).  Jose Abreu is emerging as a rookie of the year candidate and is adjusting quite well to major league baseball.  Newcomer Adam Eaton has added a spark to the top of the lineup that reminds many of Scotty Pods from the ’05 season.  Other players like Alexei Ramirez, Tyler Flowers, Conor Gillaspie, Gordon Beckham and Dayan Viciedo have greatly improved their numbers and hopefully have figured it all out.  Those are just some of the reasons I feel different writing about this team.

Chicago White Sox Women's Grey V-Neck Triblend Tee with Navy Batterman Logo by 5th & Ocean, Clark Street Sports: $29.99

Chicago White Sox Women’s Grey V-Neck Triblend Tee with Navy Batterman Logo by 5th & Ocean, Clark Street Sports: $29.99

Yes, I still write a lot about losing, but I don’t feel like the losing will drag on forever like it did last year.  Last year was hard to take and I could be proven wrong by the end of the year, but with the way this team is playing and fighting every game I just don’t think I will be wrong.  Well at least I hope I’ll be right!

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Ladies Night at the Cell

Calling all my LADIES…Oh yes, cialis sale it’s Ladies Night at the Cell on Friday, May 23rd!  The Chicago White Sox present their annual night just for the ladies, and this year they gave us a matchup that you certainly will not want to miss: the New York Yankees.

This is the perfect opportunity to grab your girls, kick off the Memorial Day Weekend, and head out to the Cell to say farewell to the “Ultimate Bachelor”, Derek Jeter as he plays his final games at US Cellular.

As if the matchup wasn’t a big enough incentive, the Sox are offering heavily discounted tickets for this premiere matchup. Get your specially priced tickets at www.whitesox.com/ladies and receive 10% off merchandise from the Sports Depot.

Jeter Farewell Tour

Jeter Farewell Tour

First pitch is 7:10, but you will want to arrive early enough to enjoy the pre-game activities.  The Sox organization knows how to plan a night just for the ladies, check it out:

  • Zumba outside Gate 5 from 5:45pm-6:45pm
  • Make-up consultants in section 107, 154 & 156
  • 10% off all ladies merchandise at the Chicago Sports Depot (receive coupon from link to map below)
  • The incredible Girl Band performing outside Gate 4
  • $250 shopping spree giveaway at Chicago Sports Depot to one lucky lady
  • Massage therapists in section 107, 158, 159 & 535

Download event details and stadium map for White Sox Ladies Night 2014 Map HERE 

Another perk this year for purchasing the special discounted tickets? One lucky lady and three of her friends will win a chance for an on field photo opportunity.

After you enjoy all of that go grab a cold one and some of the delicious food at the Cell and settle in for exciting baseball.  It’s the South Siders vs The Evil Empire and as we know these are always big statement games.  With the explosive offense of the Sox and the depleted roster of the Yankees this is setting up to be a monster game for our boys.  Hawk Harrelson said this year’s Sox offense reminds him of the ’27 Yankees, so what better time to show it then against the Yanks themselves.

Fireworks Night on April 25th

Top off your ladies night with a spectacular fireworks display.  At the Chicago White Sox Ladies Night you will get it all:  exercise, pampering, shopping, music, drinks, food, fireworks, the Sox, the Yankees, Derek Jeter and a great time with your girls and ladies from all over Chicago.  Stop looking for something better to do and grab your tickets today at www.whitesox.com/ladies. See you there!

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2012-mlb-playoffs-miguel-cabrera-detroit-tigers-oakland-as

With NFL and college football dominating the headlines, discount one could easily forget that we are already into the second round of the MLB Playoffs.  After an incredibly exciting Division Series that saw 3 of the 4 series go to 5 games, pharmacy and teams that dominated their divisions all season long be eliminated by wild card winners, treat there are now 4 teams remaining in the Championship Series (the 2nd of the 3 rounds of playoffs): The New York Yankees, Detroit Tigers, St. Louis Cardinals and San Francisco Giants. In case you haven’t been following the MLB post-season, here’s your update!

American League Championship Series: Detroit leads New York 2 games to 0.

Derek Jeter being helped off field

After the Detroit Tigers snuck into the playoffs past our White Sox, they were able to defeat the Oakland A’s in round 1 and grab a 2 game lead over the Yankees in round 2. The Tigers are cruising as they won both games against the Yanks in New York and have the chance to clinch a trip to the World Series on their home field if they win the next 2. The worst news for NY? Captain Derek Jeter is out with a broken ankle! With his leadership vacant, most would turn to Alex Rodriguez. However, A-Rod has yet to make his presence felt in the playoffs. A-Rod is an anemic 3 for 23 while the Tigers have 5 players hitting over .300 through the first two games of the series.

Remaining Series Schedule:

  • Game 3: Tuesday 7:00 in Detroit
  • Game 4: Wednesday 7:00 in Detroit
  • Game 5: Thursday 3:00 in Detroit (if necessary)
  • Game 6: Saturday 7:00 in New York (if necessary)
  • Game 7: Sunday 7:00 in New York (if necessary)

National League Championship Series: St. Louis leads San Francisco 1 game to 0. 

Chris Carpenter

As Sox fans cringe at thought of Detroit’s post-season success, Cubs fans will do the same as the Cardinals hope to return to the World Series yet again. The Cardinals came in to the playoffs as the Wild Card team defeating Atlanta in the WC game and the Nationals in round 1. After stealing game 1 in San Fran, the Red Birds will be going to their star pitcher Chris Carpenter in hopes of stealing another.

Remaining Series Schedule:

  • Game 2: Monday 7:00 in San Francisco
  • Game 3: Wednesday 3:00 in St. Louis
  • Game 4: Thursday 7:00 in St. Louis
  • Game 5:  Friday 7:00 in St. Louis (if necessary)
  • Game 6: Sunday 3:30 in San Francisco (if necessary)
  • Game 7: Monday 7:00 in San Francisco (if necessary)

 

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yanks sox

Now that’s what we call baseball!  If you skipped last night’s back and forth slug-fest between the 1st place Yankees and our 1st place Sox, viagra then you missed a gem of a game.  Not only was it the hated, ed yet admired Yankees, viagra but it was a glorious display of home runs, come from behinds and familiar faces between the teams.  Definitely a game folks will be buzzing about today and for good reason – it was damn good baseball with a come-from-behind win by the Sox to take Game 1 of this 3-game series.

What You Need to Know:

  • Sox pitcher Gavin Floyd got the start against former Sox pitcher Freddie Garcia.  Garcia pitched 4 shut-out innings, but Floyd stank things up early giving up 3 runs and 5 hits while walking 4 in the first 2 1/2 innings.  Floyd was pulled half way through the second inning – his shortest stint this season – and the bullpen went to work early when Hector Santiago was brought in.
  • After sinking into a 3-0 hole, the Sox bats came alive in the 5th inning with a whopping 5 runs.  Former Yankee, Dewayne Wise put up a 2-run homer against the team he played for just a month ago.
  • The Yanks came back and took the lead thanks to MLB golden boy, Derek Jeter’s home run in the 6th, but Gordon Beckham (former HAM) came right back in the bottom of the 6th with a solo long ball to tie the game, 6-6.

    Derek Jeter

  • It was Alexi Ramirez who stole the show last night with a payback game winning 2-run homer.  Ramirez had been denied a double in the 5th inning when umpires originally called his drive down the 3rd baseline “fair”, but after Yankees manager Joe Girardi argued the call, it was reversed to a “foul”.  Ramirez went back to the plate and proceeded to strike out.  His 2-run bomb in the 7th was a subliminal “pay-back’s a bitch” message to the Yanks.
  • Alexi Ramirez

    Adam Dunn hit his 36th homer of the season in the 8th to give the Sox a 3-run lead that would solidify their win.

Your Take Away Piece:  “What a game!  After being swept by the Royals, the Sox come back in a big way with offensive power and a strong outing from the bullpen to shut down the Yankees. This is what great baseball is all about.”

What’s Next:  The Sox and Yanks are back at it tonight at 7PM when Francisco Liriano gets the start against a very good Ivan Nova who is 11-6 this season.

 

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