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Today in White Sox History: November 2

Black Jack sizes up a Cy, and Hank Greenberg sizes up L.A.

Bill Veeck (lower left) and Hank Greenberg (upper left) worked together running clubs in Cleveland and Chicago — and on this day, took a step toward moving out to California together.
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While still running the White Sox, principal owner Bill Veeck and minority owner/GM Hank Greenberg asked for home dates at the Los Angeles Coliseum — not for the White Sox, but for the expansion Los Angeles Angels, who were to start play in the American League in 1961. Roles would reverse with the Angels, with Veeck owning a small stake and Greenberg serving as the principal owner.

Los Angeles Dodgers owner Walter O’Malley, not wanting to share his venue with any club owned even partly by Veeck, invoked his exclusive franchise rights and denied Greenberg. Greenberg’s loyalty to Veeck prevented him from asking the White Sox owner to back out, and the Angels ended up being founded by signing cowboy Gene Autry, who had only wanted the rights to broadcast Angels games, not own the team.

In retrospect, the Greenberg/Veeck arrangement might not have worked smoothly in California, as within a year and in fear of a terminal illness, Veeck was forced to sell the White Sox to John and Art Allyn.


White Sox pitcher Jack McDowell easily captured the American League Cy Young, beating out Randy Johnson. Black Jack went 22-10 with a 3.37 ERA. He led the league in wins and shutouts, was second in innings pitched and third in complete games. McDowell got 124 points to Johnson’s 75.

From 1990 through 1994, Jack won 73 games, more than any pitcher in the American League.