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Remembrance of Hot Stoves Past

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In fewer than three volumes, no offense to Proust

Kansas City Royals v Chicago White Sox
Aaron Rowand discusses the 2006 Hot Stove.
Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

What’s your most vivid Hot Stove memory? Any year, good or bad. As usual, you don’t have to ask me twice to tell some story of my White Sox past.

1981: When I was a kid, I didn’t know squat about the rest of the baseball. As far as I was concerned, baseball consisted of the White Sox and a bunch of guys who, I assumed, were just trucked in for the day to give my Sox something to do. Before the age of 10, I couldn’t have named one player on another team.

Which is my way of saying, even I understood that the White Sox signing of Carlton Fisk in 1981 was a big deal. I grew up reading the Bloomington (IL) Pantagraph, and it made the front page. In Cardinals-Cubs country. Sure, it was below the fold, but it was the front page. So even I knew this was huge.

He signed in March, so I’d love for somebody to fill in the blanks as to why it happened so late in the offseason (and we thought the wait on Ohtani last year was interminable).

2006: I loved Aaron Rowand. (And considering how the Sox have failed to trot out one decent centerfielder in the 12 years he’s been gone, I don’t think my love was misplaced. See also: Crede, Joe.) Thanksgiving morning, 2006, my then boyfriend called upstairs, “Uh, honey? The Sox just traded Aaron Rowand.” “Nooooooooo!” I yelled and threw myself face down on the bed. (Yes, I was a grown woman, and no, I’m not embarrassed.) I love Jim Thome and am thrilled he played part of his career with the Sox. But my shock and dismay at that moment remains crystal clear in my memory.

So, if you’re tired of parsing tweets, or discussing what the signing of Ivan Nova means, or wringing your hands about whether the White Sox can make a franchise-changing deal, join me in sharing your own vivid Hot Stove memories. Did the signing of Albert Belle make you dance around your living room? Did you think, “uh oh” at the Jeff Samardzija trade? Did you nod at the the signing of Jermaine Dye and say, “yep, that’s the move I’ve been hoping they’d make”?

Let’s have some fun while we’re waiting for the announcement of Bryce Harper, the next White Sox.