CHICAGO -- Any time the White Sox take down their American League Central rival from Minnesota, it’s a good day for the South Siders’ ardent fan base.
That fact holds true even in the virtual world, with the 1983 White Sox completing a four-game series sweep against the '65 Twins during the first round of the MLB Dream Bracket 2: Dream Season. The simulated competition, featuring many of the greatest teams in baseball history, is being produced by Out of the Park Baseball 21, MLB‘s most realistic strategy game (PC and Mac).
The 2005 White Sox, who swept the Astros to claim the franchise’s first World Series title in almost nine decades, lost Friday to the 1942 Kansas City Monarchs. Next up for the ’83 White Sox are the '70 Orioles, who defeated the '95 Mariners in six games.
Four White Sox pitchers and three starters grabbed victories in this opening series, while the bullpen threw 13 1/3 scoreless innings. Ron Kittle and Harold Baines knocked two home runs each to lead the offense.
Let’s take a look at the game-by-game results.
Game 1: White Sox 14, Twins 3
LaMarr Hoyt, the 1983 American League Cy Young Award winner with 24 victories, struck out seven over 7 1/3 innings in the rotation’s best effort against the Twins and was supported by a 16-hit attack. Julio Cruz doubled and tripled among his four hits, scored two runs and drove in three from the nine spot in the loaded order. Every White Sox starter scored at least one run and every player but Scott Fletcher and Greg Luzinski had at least one hit.
Five other White Sox players had multi-hit games, with Ron Kittle going deep in the seventh and scoring and driving in three. The White Sox scored six runs in the fifth and six in the eighth to cruise to the easy win. Jerry Koosman fanned three over 1 2/3 scoreless innings to close it out.
Game 2: White Sox 5, Twins 3
For the second consecutive game, the Twins jumped to an early lead. And for the second consecutive game, the White Sox rallied for victory. Minnesota scored three in the third off of starter Richard Dotson, but the White Sox put up two in the fourth and two in the fifth against Jim Kaat to regain the lead. Luzinski’s two-run shot in the fourth and Fletcher’s two-run blast in the fifth accounted for those four runs.
While Dotson only lasted 4 1/3 innings, the bullpen combination of Dick Tidrow, Juan Agosto and Dennis Lamp combined for 4 2/3 hitless innings of relief. Lamp earned the save by striking out three and walking one in two innings.
Game 3: White Sox 8, Twins 4
One run in the eighth and two in the ninth pushed the White Sox to a third consecutive victory. Floyd Bannister earned the victory despite allowing four runs on four hits over 5 1/3 innings. He struck out four. But the White Sox bullpen once again was dominant, as Agosto fanned four over 1 2/3 innings and Lamp earned his second save with two more scoreless frames.
Harold Baines launched his first homer in the series, and Cruz added his second triple among two more hits. Tom Paciorek and Kittle had two hits apiece, with Kittle driving in three behind his two-run homer in the second off of Jim Perry.
Game 4: White Sox 4, Twins 2
A two-run, two-out home run from Baines during a three-run fifth inning off of Minnesota starter Camilo Pascual was pretty much all the White Sox needed to seal the series win. Britt Burns earned the victory by allowing two runs over 5 2/3 innings and striking out six, while the bullpen yielded one hit over 3 1/3 innings.
Kevin Hickey earned the save with two strikeouts over 1 1/3 innings. The White Sox had 14 hits, seven for extra bases. Cruz tripled for the third time in the series and drove in two, and the bottom third of the order in Vance Law, Fletcher and Cruz finished 6-for-12 with three runs scored and two RBIs. Baines, Paciorek and Carlton Fisk added two hits each.