In another one of White Sox GM Ed Short’s best moves, two-time All-Star pitcher Juan Pizarro, nursing a bad arm, was dealt to the Pirates for minor league pitcher Wilbur Wood. Wood would blossom in Chicago thanks to his knuckleball — first as a record-setting relief pitcher, then as a four-time 20-game winner (1971-74). Wood would also make three All-Star teams. He pitched for the Sox through the 1978 season.
In one of the strangest endings to a postseason game in history, the White Sox beat the Angels, 2-1, in Game 2 of the ALCS.
With the game tied in the ninth inning, catcher A.J. Pierzynski ran to first on a third strike that bounced in the dirt. Angels catcher Josh Paul (a former Sox player) thought Pierzynski struck out without a “drop,” and thus never threw down to first base, as required if a third strike is dropped.
After pinch-runner Pablo Ozuna stole second, Joe Crede’s double brought home the game-winner and tied the series at a game apiece.
The White Sox were beaten by the Astros, 10-1, in Game 4 of the ALDS, eliminating them from the playoffs.
But the Sox, despite numerous injuries that caused key players to miss significant stretches of time, still had won 93 games and the Central Division title in 2021. They had consecutive winning seasons for the first time since 2003-06, and for the first time in the 120-year history of the franchise made the playoffs in back-to-back seasons.
They also beat their crosstown rivals the Cubs, in five out of six meetings.