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SB Nation MLB Awards 2014: The White Sox's most important hit of the year

Five finalists feature four homers, but all of these hits had feeling

Brian Kersey

We've talked about the Funniest Moment, the Most Regrettable Moment, and the Best Defensive Play -- and if you haven't voted yet, the polls remain open.

Now it's time to pick a White Sox winner for the fourth SB Nation MLB award: Most Important Hit.

Jose Abreu's first homer

Abreu wasted no time collecting his first hit, doubling in his first big-league plate appearance. His first homer took longer to show up -- the eighth game of the year on April 8.  For that matter, it took its time landing, too.

In his 37th plate appearance of the year, Abreu waited back on a hanging 77-mph curve by Chad Bettis. It should've fooled him, because it was the first curve he saw during a 12-pitch battle. Instead, Abreu kept his hands back and skied the spinner to left, where it barely cleared the wall. His first homer had the highest launch angle of any homer hit in 2014, and by a considerable margin.

Tyler Flowers' extra-inning walk-off homer

This homer -- a game-winner in the 12th inning against Oakland on Sept. 8 -- may not need context to stand out, but additional information makes it more special. It was a first-pitch walk-off homer after he had homered with two outs in the ninth inning to push the game into extras in the first place, which transformed this ordinary September evening into the Tyler Flowers Game.

More context: It made Conor Gillaspie want to love again.

Jose Abreu's walk-off grand slam

After Evan Longoria put the Rays ahead with a two-run homer in the ninth inning on April 25, Abreu pulled the final Jenga block on Grant Balfour's collapse by taking an outer-half fastball out to right for the game-winning grand slam. The homer was Abreu's second of the night and his ninth of April, which set an MLB rookie record.

Bonus points for making Balfour curse himself out in the dugout after he got into a shouting match with Konerko for no reason earlier in the inning. That's exactly how that ending deserved to happen.

Paul Konerko's game-tying single

With the White Sox trailing the Twins 7-6 in the seventh inning on Aug. 1, Konerko comes to the plate against Minnesota righty Anthony Swarzak with runners on the corners and one out. If it were a Konerko by any other name, Robin Ventura probably would've lifted him for a pinch-hitter. But Ventura left him in, and Konerko not only stayed out of the double play, but he lined a game-tying single to left to the delight of the home crowd.

Konerko only had seven more hits and one RBI left in him, so this one counts as the last one that really counted..

Avisail Garcia's mammoth blast

Pedants will vote for this because in terms of distance, it really was the White Sox's biggest hit of the year. More than that, this 466-foot homer off Tampa Bay's Nate Karns on Sept. 21 showed that Garcia has that kind of pull power, even after the shoulder injury. That's crucial to his development as a middle-of-the-order hitter.