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Today in White Sox History: August 30

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Yeah, sure, two grand slams today, plus a titanic shot from Joe Borchard

Texas Rangers shortstop Kevin Elster jumps to avoi
An inside-the-park grand slam from Ron Karkovice? On this day in 1990, yessir, Officer.
BRIAN BAHR/AFP via Getty Images

1941

White Sox pitcher Johnny Humphries had his string of 35 consecutive scoreless innings snapped on a home run by Chet Laabs of the Browns in the second inning. St. Louis won that afternoon going away, 10-1.


1949

The White Sox organized and celebrated “Jackie Hayes Night” at Comiskey Park. Hayes was a fine second baseman who suddenly lost his sight due to a cataract in one eye. Doctors were dumbfounded how a cataract could rob a person of sight in both eyes, but unfortunately that’s what happened.


1959

The Sox sealed a huge, four-game sweep of their closest pursuers in the American League by beating Cleveland at Municipal Stadium, 6-3 and 9-4. Early Wynn and Barry Latman picked up the wins. The four-game sweep increased the Sox lead to 5½ games in and basically ended any suspense as to who was going to win the 1959 American League pennant.

An oddity came in the nightcap, when Latman’s sacrifice fly in the second inning scored both Johnny Romano and Al Smith!

The doubleheader sweep was played in front of more than 66,000 fans. Sportswriter Gordon Cobbledick of the Cleveland Plain Dealer wrote that it was time for the Sox to “Go-Go home …”


1981

The White Sox dealt three prospects to the Twins for pitcher Jerry Koosman: The three were “Bambi” Mesa, Ron Perry and Randy Johnson (no, not THAT Randy Johnson). This Johnson was a utility player who appeared in 12 games for the White Sox in 1980. It was a small deal pulled off by GM Roland Hemond that turned out to have big implications in future years. Koosman was like a second pitching coach, tutoring young Sox hurlers. He’d start games, pitch long relief and be a situational lefthander in his two-plus years on the South Side. He’d win 23 games and save five more overall in his time in Chicago.


1983

Carlton Fisk, one of the fastest catchers in baseball history, hit an inside-the-park home run off of Dave Stewart of the Rangers at Comiskey Park. His drive struck the top of the wall in left-center field and bounded back towards the infield. While the Texas outfielders were tracking the ball down, Fisk circled the bases. The Sox won that night, 5-0.


1990

Ron Karkovice — not the fastest catcher to ever play the game (although he amazingly had 10 steals in 1992!) — hit an inside the park grand slam off of the Twins’ David West at Minnesota.

With the bases loaded in the fourth inning, Karkovice hit a line drive just over shortstop that rolled to the wall in left-center. Outfielder Dan Gladden was picking the ball up when he started to slip and fall. As he did so, he tossed the ball towards outfielder John Moses to try to start a relay, except that Moses wasn’t looking for it and the ball rolled towards center field. By the time the Twins got to it, Karkovice and all the runners had scored. It was the difference in a 4-3 win.


2004

White Sox outfielder Joe Borchard hit what is believed to be the longest home run ever at U.S. Cellular Field (now Guaranteed Rate Field). He drove a pitch from Philadelphia’s Brett Myers, a future Sox pitcher, an estimated 504 feet to right field, smacking off the wall at the back of the bleacher seats. It was part of a 9-8 White Sox win.