If you're into such things--namely, signs of the apocalypse--now might be a good time to stock up on canned goods, water, and Joe Crede jerseys.
Seriously, those Crede jerseys are going to go fast after he hit yet another grand slam to help the White Sox win 9 straight for the first time since 1982, as the Sox beat the Astros 6-5 in 10 innings this afternoon in Chicago.
Things were looking dreary with the Sox down 5-1 heading into the bottom of the 7th. But after the Sox had loaded the bases, Crede, in a moment of world series deja vu, took one look at a Chad Qualls meatball and sent it into the left field stands. The grand slam (video) tied the game at 5 and was a huge blow to Houston, who was a victim of bad luck when earlier in the inning Jermaine Dye got jammed and sent a high popup into shallow right that fell in for a hit. Dye's well placed popup loaded the bases for Crede.
The game would remain tied until the bottom of the 10th, when good execution by Juan Uribe--he laid down a picture perfect sacrifice--and then good hitting by Alex Cintron plated Rob Mackowiak, who had led off the inning with a double, for the walk-off winner. Mackowiak had played a terrible game in all areas before his double, and he had to be relieved after scoring the winning run. No doubt many Sox fans will be relieved when Brian Anderson is again roaming center field.
Before the Crede slam in the 7th, it looked like the Sox would again be foiled on their quest for 9 straight: Garland battled his control and the Houston hitters made him pay, scoring 5 runs off the inconsistent right hander. Meanwhile, Houston starter Taylor Buckholz had dominated the Sox, only allowing one run and striking out 8. But with a little luck and a lot of good hitting, the Sox were able to chase Buckholz and do their damage against Houston's bullpen.
This is a game the Sox wouldn't have won if not for excellent bullpen pitching, and it's a game they probably wouldn't have had a chance in just a few weeks ago. But now, the bullpen is again a position of strength, with a confident and aggressive Matt Thornton leading the way today, as he easily dispatched Houston's hitters with good command and a nasty 97 MPH heater. David Riske also pitched well in relief.
Now go get those Crede jerseys. And if you're of age--get drunk tonight--it might be a whole 'nother world when you wake up tommorrow.