How we remember each White Sox season this century

How we remember each White Sox season this century

When you think of the White Sox in a given year, what's the first thing that comes to mind?

Last week at ESPN, Sam Miller published an ambitious undertaking that tried to settle what every official season Major League Baseball history would be best known for.

As you could guess, the 2004 season was defined by the Red Sox winning their first World Series in 88 years.

As you might fear, the 2005 season was not defined by the White Sox ending their longer drought.

Instead, Miller called 2005 The Year That … star players were called to testify before Congress.

It’s a decent choice if one can set aside any homer tendencies, because I remember it pretty vividly for an event I only watched once. Streaming C-Span during my summer job in Missouri, I could remember cringing at Mark McGwire’s repeated pleas of “I’m not here to talk about the past.” I also smirked at Sammy Sosa for playing down his English comprehension, although it only takes a second of thought to realize he was the smartest one at the table (never testify in your second language, kids). Curt Schilling had to meekly walk back his claims — man, I wish he’d still do that — of majority PED use among baseball players, and Rafael Palmeiro cemented his legacy the wrong way with a finger-pointing denial.

(Frank Thomas was there via satellite while recovering from surgery, but his connection was too patchy to be useful.)

I can’t really set aside homer tendencies because “2005” has turned into shorthand among our kind. That said, given the rest of the baseball world has overlooked the White Sox’ championship enough times to warrant a t-shirt, I can’t really fault Miller for his choice, either.

* * *

Beyond the gnashing of teeth over another potential slight, I thought Miller’s exercise would be a fascinating one to transfer over to an individual franchise.

He determined there are “exactly seven ways to be remembered,” with a few subcategories to add clarity to potential gray areas.

  1. Incredible achievement, usually captured by a single number or concept.
    — 1b. Incredible team, often captured by a nickname.)
    — 1c. Incredible single play, or sequence of plays, often aided by iconic photo or video images
  2. The moment the timeline begins
    — 2b. The moment modern baseball begins
  3. Bloopers and/or extraordinary failures
  4. Pathos
  5. Disruption of baseball’s basic equilibrium
  6. When the larger world intersects with baseball, or vice versa
  7. By being weird, by being almost literally unbelievable or inexplicable.

For White Sox fans, the 2005 White Sox have all of (1) and some of (7), if you count the four consecutive complete games that definition of “weird.” The congressional hearings can boast (5) and (6), as well as (1c) if you count Palmeiro’s finger.

I’d still fight for the White Sox, but I’d rather save our arguments to figuring out the chief identifying factor for each White Sox this season this century. You know, think globally, act locally and all that.

2000: The Year That … the White Sox scored almost 1,000 runs.

This season had a lot going for it — a near-third MVP for Frank Thomas, the brawl with the Tigers, Jerry Manuel acting as a hotel doorman, the 7-0 road trip against the Indians and Yankees and being received like heroes in front of 43,000 the first game back (I miss Half-Price Mondays). Ron Schueler atoned for the Jaime Navarro trade by getting Jose Valentin and Cal Eldred before stepping down from the GM seat.

Still, I’m going with the most productive full season for a White Sox offense, even if the Mariners kept it in check in the ALDS.

2001: … Kenny Williams had growing pains.

Personally, this would be “… signed Jose Canseco,” but I know that experience isn’t universal. His career started getting burned by Scott Boras in the Alex Rodriguez sweepstakes, and he moved Jose Valentin off shortstop with Royce Clayton, who turned in a terrible first half. Moreover, his centerpiece trade for David Wells failed on both sides. The Blue Jays accused Williams of shenanigans when Mike Sirotka turned out to be damaged goods, and Wells ripped Frank Thomas for not playing through a torn triceps before the Cubs bunted Wells and his bad back into the ground.

2002: … the Ligues charged the field. (Suggested by Rob Hart)

Even today, some 15 years after the incident, fans with upper-deck tickets are not allowed to access the lower deck because a father-son combo jumped from the stands and attacked the Royals’ first-base coach. And even today, to a lesser extent, the average White Sox fan is associated with them for insult purposes.

(Previous answer: … Keith Foulke was pulled from the closer role.)

2003: … they renamed Comiskey Park.

On Feb. 1, the White Sox sold the naming rights to their ballpark at 35th and Shields to U.S. Cellular for 20 years and $68 million. This is the kind of franchise shift that eclipses Esteban Loaiza’s season out of nowhere, Billy Koch’s collapse, Neal Cotts in Yankee Stadium, Jerry Manuel’s firing, or anything else.

2004: … Magglio Ordonez and Willie Harris collided.

This team probably would have been too limited even if Ordonez weren’t limited to 52 games after wrecking his knee in right field, but it officially changed the scope of Ozzie Guillen’s first season, and how they’d build the 2005 team. Specific to right field, Boras wouldn’t apprise the Sox of Ordonez’s rehab progress, so they ended up going with Jermaine Dye.

This year comes down to the collision, or Williams acquiring Roberto Alomar and Carl Everett for the second straight year.

2005: … they won the World Series.

2006: … Mark Buehrle fell apart.

There are a lot of subplots in this one — the Jim Thome and Javier Vazquez trades, the acrimony over Brian Anderson and Rob Mackowiak, Joe Crede’s back derailing a breakout season. But Buehrle posting a 7.12 ERA over the last three months, captures the specific struggles more than anything. The White Sox pitching staff’s ERA swelled by a run, going from a league-best 3.61 to a 10th-best 4.61.

2007: … they killed their momentum.

The White Sox drew well over 2 million fans in each of the two seasons following the championship. Alas, they went 72-90 in the second year to start their slide back toward the bottom of the attendance rankings. This could also be “… they secretly rebuilt,” because their biggest moves were forward-thinking (trading Brandon McCarthy for John Danks, trading Freddy Garcia for Gavin Floyd and Gio Gonzalez), while their biggest MLB signing was, um, Darin Erstad.

2008: … they won the Blackout Game.

It’s still the White Sox’ last major triumph.

2009: … Mark Buehrle threw a perfect game. (Suggested by Scot Bertram)

Upon first thought, I didn’t see this as something to hinge a season on. I remember the date, but it’s one of those moments that exists, for me, outside the general sphere of disappointment during the active postseason drought.

Then again, Buehrle started his next outing against the Twins by retiring the first 17 he faced to set an MLB record for consecutive batters retired. Then he gave up a two-out walk, a single and a ground-rule double to tie the game at 1. Minnesota then tacked three runs in the seventh to win the game, and later the division. That fits the theme either way.

(Previous answer: Gordon Beckham debuted.)

2010: … Jim Thome crushed the White Sox to Hell.

Instead of figuring out a way to work around an aging Thome’s limitations in order to take advantage of his excellent production in fewer games, the White Sox instead rolled with Mark Kotsay and Andruw Jones by choice. It wasn’t a money thing, because the Twins took advantage by signing Thome for just one year and just $1.5 million.

The standings …

  1. Twins, 94-68
  2. White Sox, 88-74

… and the production gap …

  • MIN DH: .264/.368/.488, 31 HR, 107 RBI
  • CHW DH: .247/.332/.396, 17 HR, 65 RBI

… rolled into one moment:

2011: … Guillen lost his power play against Kenny Williams.

Guillen wasn’t the only one responsible for the deterioration of his era, but he was the one rolling out Rios and Adam Dunn to historically depressing lengths while citing their contracts, even though he had better options and Williams said to ignore salaries.

2012: … Robin Ventura was exposed.

Because the White Sox didn’t have any adults in decision-making roles in 2011, the arrival of Ventura restored basic functions to the front office and management chairs. With Dunn and Rios bouncing back, the White Sox had enough talent to lead the AL Central heading into the final month. They sputtered to an 11-17 September, in part because Ventura looked completely overwhelmed by the expanded rosters. That flop capped his only winning season with the White Sox, but he still had four more to go.

2013: … Gordon Beckham crashed into Conor Gillaspie.

This could also be the year Jeff Keppinger happened, but this moment encapsulates a 99-loss season more than anything.

2014: … Jose Abreu set the rookie home run record.

Abreu helped press the reset button on the rebuild by showing that he was immediately worth the biggest contract in White Sox history. He hit .317/.383/.581 with 36 homers, which broke Ron Kittle’s franchise record for rookies. The White Sox still lost 89 games, but at least they connected on a signing for once, with the ability to pay dividends for years to come.

2015: … the White Sox tried to take a shortcut.

Their confidence buoyed by impressive debuts from Abreu and Adam Eaton, the White Sox traded for Jeff Samardzija and signed David Robertson and Melky Cabrera. The result: A three-game improvement in the win column and a lot of ironic “Shark Cage” caps.

2016: … Chris Sale cut up the jerseys.

This could also be the year of L’Affaire LaRoche, but Sale’s knife escapades showed that the dysfunction that flared up during spring training never really left, even with the 23-10 start. I don’t think this single act necessitated trading Sale and starting the rebuild, but it made it a lot easier to envision why Sale might not have been best utilized on future sub-.500 teams.

(How I wish this year could be about Matt Albers. Thanks to Carl Skanberg for the artwork.)

2017: … to be determined.

… Ricky’s Boys Didn’t Quit? (the franchise tone argument)
… Hawk Harrelson yielded the chair? (the franchise history argument)
… Yoan Moncada debuted? (the on-field argument)

What do you think it will be? Where do you think I went wrong in the others? The floor is open.

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105 Comments on "How we remember each White Sox season this century"

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Josh Nelson
Editor

My pick

2017: … Avisail Garcia, All-Star.

Possum Rob
Member

Good choice, baseball is weird. 

Amar
Member

Yep

Eagle Bones
Member

“Avisail Garcia somehow almost won a batting title.”

BuehrleMan
Member

this is where my last sig from SSS would come in handy

avisail garcia’s not going to be anything~~joe sheehan

 

Patrick Nolan
Editor

“avisail garcia’s not going to be anything” ~~ everyone

Fixed

BuehrleMan
Member

not the hawkeroo! but yes, it’s mostly true but not 100% correct. in any case you have to hear the way sheehan said it, which was in that oh so smug joe sheehan manner. (i actually don’t dislike sheehan and know that he knows way more than i do. i just happened to focus on that when he said it and kept track of it long enough that when he was eventually proven wrong i felt compelled to make a point of it)

Possum Rob
Member

2007- freaking Darin Erstad. The grinder persona was never stronger for the sox. 

2017- so many things happened that it’s hard to pinpoint one thing, between all of the trades and the beginning of the “new guys” getting called up. 

Patrick Nolan
Editor

I think my pick would be the trades. The White Sox sold nine players in important roles in the span of a month and a half. I could see a case for Moncada, but his debut was sort of uneven, whereas Beckham’s was a resounding success.

Eagle Bones
Member

Yeah I think the rebuild as a whole is the story there.

gnix
Member

Yep. I think it will be remembered as “The Fire Sale.”

35Shields
Member

I think 2017 has to be the Quintana trade

The biggest focus for the first half of the season was trading Q and doing so in the first crosstown trade in a decade is a pretty moment for Chicago sports.

35Shields
Member

I’d also go with 23-10 for 2016. For one glorious month, the post-2012 White Sox were exciting

Josh Nelson
Editor

The Quintana/Eloy trade was my second pick, and I think as time passes, will be the right choice to remember 2017.

katiesphil
Member

2017- When yesterday beacme tomorrow. Rolls the trades, the focus, the RBDQ, Hawk stepping aside, and the rebuild into one.

mikeyb
Member

These are all great. I think for 2010, my lasting memory will be the Buehrle between the legs play. Shame the rest of the season couldn’t be nearly as memorable as opening day.

lastof12
Member

I 2nd this. I’ll never forget the play.

Trooper Galactus
Member

I thought that was in 2011 because I was at that game and that was the only year I bought a season ticket package. But just checked and yeah, 2010. Weird…I don’t even remember the circumstances of how I wound up at Opening Day that year.

Scot Bertram
Member

2009 also could be the year of Buehrle’s perfect game and “The Catch”. Probably what I remember most from that season.

2017 better be remembered as the burn it down & salt the earth year.

asinwreck
Member

If we take in-season moments as defining, 2017 is the Year of the Q-Eloy Trade. Hahn took a most-loved veteran and shipped him to the North Side for an elite prospect. This move signaled full steam ahead on the rebuild, and began the summer of mass transactions (including the dismantling of the bullpen).

Anyway, that’s the thing that made me happiest in 2017.

Amar
Member

Avi’s breakout performance is the easy 2017 choice for me. 

For 2004, I would also consider Carlos Lee not sliding hard into 2nd base (vs the Twins) in retaliation to Hunter’s dirty play at home plate. I recall Ozzie citing Lee’s lack of retaliation for getting rid of him. 

KenWo4LiFe
Member

Oh screw that. Ozzie had every chance in the world to clean hunter’s clock and he praised him. Then he’s going to talk about lee for not taking out someone not named hunter? The hell with Ozzie. 

Amar
Member

Not saying that I agree with Ozzie, but noting the potential signifance nonetheless (i.e. the Lee trade),

Right Size Wrong Shape
Member
Right Size Wrong Shape

2017- The year that I was more interested to read the minor league recaps than the major league recaps.

Eagle Bones
Member

I decided to take a look at the Fangraphs team dashboards each year as I read along with these. That was painful. So many names that broke my heart. Also a bunch of guys I remember having a somewhat negative opinion of who were probably better than I thought.

Amar
Member

Jose Valentin!

karkovice squad
Member

Valentin’s the posterboy for why errors and fielding percentage are terrible ways for judging defense.

JoeMa25
Member

2017, the most fun year since…well when?

2012?
2010?
2008?

Albeit for different reasons.

Bucky with the Good Hair
Member
Bucky with the Good Hair

I was told this site was a wholesome, safe place. I don’t need to be reminded of 2010 ever again and I thought that was our collectively unspoken agreement.

northsiderepresent
Member

HA…

MrTopaz
Member

2016 was as memorable for the experience of watching the games as the games themselves. Just pig gifs and that gif of Jimmy Rollins giving the camera a smoldering half smirk after sliding into third. But Sale’s a good choice.

katiesphil
Member

Am still a bit nostalgic about the pigs.

winningugly
Member

Totally agree. When Rhoobie gets his ass over here we can ask again why he trashed them so.

Lurker Laura
Member

Pretty sure the pigs is what drew me into the site in the first place. (Sorry, Jim’s Writing. You were awesome, too.)

Lurker Laura
Member

“are what drew me in.” Stupid grammar.

katiesphil
Member

You got it before gibby noticed, so you’re good.

mikecws91
Member

Say, nice digs!

2010 and 2012 still give me agita. I also think of 2016 as the year of 23-10.

Otter
Member

I’ll remember 2012 as the year “the Sox cost Mike Trout the MVP even though Miggy hit for the triple crown”

KenWo4LiFe
Member

2003: they really should have won that year but that jerkoff Konerko dropped the ball.

I’m with you on 2001 with canseco that was exciting. But that Wells game you mentioned when the cubs bunted him to death was a memorable game. Sean Lowe came in and shut the door and Carlos Lee hit a walk off slam and the place turned into a gang war with fights all over the place. Man I loved that night. One of my favorites ever. Also 2001 was the year my hero Harold Baines was finally toast. I remember he got one at bat late in the season and knowing it was the end I had tears in my eyes as he took strike 3. Also they had those nice jerseys. 

2010 they won a ton of games to get back into contention. That was exciting and coincided with the birth of Dayan! 

2012: poor showing by Sox fans. End of the year with the Sox in the lead they had like 2000 people. 

2013: should have rebuilt. I was all for it then. It was clear they were done.

2014: Exciting year. More than last year in my opinion.

2015: The year Robin should’ve been canned. Would have changed the direction of the Sox. Instead we are here. 

2017: All Star Avi

El Senor
Member

2018:  soxmachine rebirth

NateDPT12
Member

I remember them saying in 2010 they wanted to leave the DH spot open to rotate people through as a quasi off day. The idea of using the DH as a rotating lineup spot was not a bad idea. The problem was rotating Kotsay and Jones through that spot instead of somebody useful who could also play the field.

Eagle Bones
Member

Yeah, like Vizquel.

winningugly
Member

It took me 8 tries to successfully log in. Chrissakes, this is like marriage. Hope it gets easier.

35Shields
Member

2006 for me is definitely the Barrett-Pierzynski fight and AJ hitting a go ahead bomb off Dempster in the other series as Cubs fans threw trash all over their precious Wrigley.

Lurker Laura
Member

I was at that game (the AJ homer game). Most fun I’ve ever had at Wrigley, hands down.

Right Size Wrong Shape
Member
Right Size Wrong Shape

I was at the AJ / Barrett fight game.  When Iguchi hit the grand slam that was probably my favorite moment at a Sox game.

northsiderepresent
Member

I forgot they did that. Weirdos.

Patrick Nolan
Editor

Going to practice embedding a tweet with this Adam Engel nugget.

35Shields
Member

Any thoughts on why UZR or DRS were so lukewarm towards him?

Something with positioning, or just SSS?

Patrick Nolan
Editor

Not sure. At the beginning it was because they rated his arm very poorly, but even that looks like it evened out by season’s end.

Worth noting that BP’s FRAA, typically the weird outlier in non-catcher fielding metrics, liked him much better than either UZR or DRS.

karkovice squad
Member
Patrick Nolan
Editor

As youdamans go, this has to be one of the youdamanniest.

yoyo
Member

If they had the ability to use him ONLY in reserve, sure.  I’d rather not see much of him.  He’s like Pillar minus the ability to get a .300 OBP….even that’s terrible.

winningugly
Member

Oh, and SKANBERG IS GENIUS! The band is getting back together!

northsiderepresent
Member

I am reccing like a motherfucker!

The new site has reignited my reccing zeal. Beware

wonderpants
Member

Skanberg’s “velvet” Thome by the phone painting comes to mind.

Will never forget where I was when Thome hit that ball off of Thornton, and the crushing feeling of the moment. You just felt that hit coming; the table set for a fat eff-you to the front office. 

CarlSkanberg
Member

I barely remember that. I think that was a SSS MS Paint post.

wonderpants
Member

well, I’m just a much bigger fan than you

CarlSkanberg
Member

Lots of people are bigger Carl Skanberg fans than I am.

Dingo_Sox
Member

Tried to find a copy of it in the archives, PhotoBucket didn’t cooperate.  Oh well, found a bunch of old ms paint project that made me laugh to hard at while at work.  Wretched in horror and disgust at one of the prospect lists from 2009 as well.  Good times

bobbysouthsider
Member

where the hell you guys been….

2003 – my own private urinal and beer vendor as nobody attended the games (first year as season ticket holder). Also the All Star game at the Cell.

Steve
Member

2013: … Gordon Beckham crashed into Conor Gillaspie’s butt

Trooper Galactus
Member

The Buttumble before there was a Buttfumble.

BuehrleMan
Member

surely 2009 has to be remembered for the game against KC on september 19th:

jayson nix on first, beckham at the plate. nix takes off for second. beckham takes a first pitch curve ball for strike one. buck comes up to throw and nails nix at second and nails beckham in the dick as he stands at the plate.

Lurker Laura
Member

Oh, how I miss Half-Price Mondays. I was really, really broke back then, and they were the only games I could afford. Ticket, scorecard, Italian sausage, and a beer for $20.

northsiderepresent
Member

Sister, you fill a water bottle with gin or rum. It’s the only way to do it.

I was on that fucking Jumbotron three times this year (I am counting meetup, granted) because they were like, “Oh look, a person. There’s a person.”

I was telling this to a friend and he was like, “And she’s drinking her third bottle of water!”

Lurker Laura
Member

I trend towards bourbon, which doesn’t masquerade as water very well.

northsiderepresent
Member

That scans,

Joist
Member

The Blackout Game is obviously the winner for 2008, but there were a bunch of really fun things in 2008.  Two that spring to mind immediately are Carlos Quentin, MVP Candidate, and Alexei’s grand slam in Game 162.

Trooper Galactus
Member

2011, for me, was completely defined by the collapse of Adam Dunn.  Rios had been a mercurial player, and I had seen enough of him in 2009 to know his performance could crater pretty easily.  But Dunn was brought in as a model of consistency as an offensive force, and while I might have expected a little bit of age regression, I didn’t think it was humanly possible for a player to fall off a cliff to that degree so suddenly.  Yeah, it was frustrating that Ozzie kept flinging him out there when logic would have said it was time to move on, but I am still amazed at Dunn’s absolute collapse that year.

northsiderepresent
Member

A writer for the Reader called it. Wish I remember who it was. He was like, I’m a Reds fan. And I think you guys are CARAZY is you think your answer is Adam Dunn.

Trooper Galactus
Member

If Adam Dunn hit remotely for us like he did for the Reds, that year probably goes quite a bit differently.

craigws
Member

i’m forever in denial about that one.

BuehrleMan
Member

for me 2007 was buehrle’s no hitter, which i was in attendance for.

unfortunately 2008 was ruined by the presence of you know who.

wonderpants
Member

Blackout win (and the excitement of the few games leading up to it) aside, 2008 was the year of Rookie Alexei for me. He almost makes me forget you know who…

almost.

Lurker Laura
Member

I will forever remember 99 losses in 2013, for personal reasons.

I will always, and unfortunately, remember 2016 for the 7-1 collapse in the 9th against the Royals.

I’d like to remember 23-10. But that Royals game was so White Sox, it was like watching my entire life flash before my eyes in painful slow motion.

Pointerbabe
Member

I was listening to that debacle in my car.   I had to work very hard to quell reactionary road rage

yoyo
Member

Wasn’t 2012 when Hawkins was drafted and done the backflip?  To bad he couldn’t have face planted on stage.  That would have summed up the next 4 years.

Trooper Galactus
Member

Hawkins was just the last symptom of what was a recurring issue for the team at that point.

NateDPT12
Member

2003 for me is Jose Paniagua. Sox are tied with the Twins going into a 4 game series at home. They win the first game and are crushing the Twins the second game and Manuel puts Paniagua in for mop up duty. He gets crushed, and flips off the fans on his way back to the dugout, then gets released after the game.  The Twins feel good about themselves, and win the next two games to leave Chicago tied.  They sweep the Sox the next week in Minnesota, and that was about it.

The Paniagua decision was one of many awful decisions by Manuel in ’03 including the aforementioned Cotts start in Yankee Stadium, (Buehrle lost to the worthless Tigers in the next game), and using Armando Rios to try to bunt in a game in Cleveland only to put Tony Graffanino in as a defensive replacement the next inning.

Only the White Sox could pull a Cy Young caliber Loaiza out of their asses and not make the postseason.  That season was insanely frustrating.

KenWo4LiFe
Member

Find it hard to blame Jerry Manuel for bringing in a guy with a huge lead and they still win the game. Also find it hard to blame him for that Cotts start when Buehrle got destroyed the next day anyway. Paul Konerko screwed the Sox much harder in 2003 than Jerry Manuel did.

Patrick Nolan
Editor

Paniagua crossed my mind as well.

Gus
Member

AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAW!!! OH! Say it now! I’m back! I’m back! I’m back! I’m back! Get up offa that thing, and dance ’till you feel better, Get up offa that thing, and dance ’till you, sing it now! Get up offa that thing, and dance ’till you feel better, Get up offa that thing, and try to release that pressure! 

BuehrleMan
Member

say it loud, you’re back and you’re proud!

yoyo
Member

I can’t make it up to Chicago to see many games, but when I do often times that helps for me to distinguish the year (in my mind anyway).  Outside of his season stats, I grew a liking for Frazier because he hit a HR in 2 of the last 3 games I’ve been to.

2016 – the defining moment for me was Saladino’s game winning hit against the Cubs scoring J.B. Shuck.  Made for a pleasant 3 hr ride home.

grinder rule 42
Member

Dishonorable mention for the 2010 season. Besides the gentleman masher hurting us fans, Kdubs ensured we all knew/remembered that he always gets his guy by trading for Teahen then almost immediately signs him to a 3 year extension a month and a few days later during the offseason.

 

BuehrleMan
Member

also dishonorable mention for the 2010 season: picking up manny ramirez. that was disgraceful. it caused me to go on strike from watching the sox for a while.

35Shields
Member

Only player that I can ever remember booing while they were on the White Sox

KenWo4LiFe
Member

Lameoooos

Amar
Member

How long was said strike?

BuehrleMan
Member

i think it was about a week. looking at B-R the sox won 7 in a row but didn’t gain ground then they lost 10 of 12 and dropped to 10 games back. my solution when coming back to watch was to root for him to strike out every time he came to the plate.

ParisSox
Member

2003 – Esteban Loiza.  I didn’t associate the stadium name change with any particular year.  But that Loiza season is burned in my brain.

Kyle321n
Member

2000 for me was “The year the kids got swept”. Coming off the Kids can Play campaign I really thought the Sox were going to win it all that year. Then the Mariners came in and broke my heart.

2017 feels like “The year the rebuild worked” but maybe it could also be “the year we bought into the rebuild”

Anohito
Member

2017, the year the Quintana trade confirmed a full blown tear down which encapsulated a much needed change in team/franchise philosophy and actually set a new hopeful direction for the future instead of being mired in mediocrity.

 

Also it can’t be said enough but FUCK ESPN. 2005 not having one of the most dominant postseason runs culminating in a 4 game world series sweep all based on insanely dominating events like grand slams, walkoff homers, gutsy bullpen performances epitomized by the el duque moment and of course complete games. FUCK ESPN.