On this date, one of the biggest “what if’s” in franchise history took place.
As per the rules at the time, the White Sox had to choose between two pitchers signed to “bonus baby” contracts, as only one player signed to a deal for over a certain amount of money could remain in the organization; the other would have to be waived.
With that in mind, rookies Bruce Howard and Denny McLain squared off in an intrasquad game to see who would be released and who got promoted to Double-A Lynchburg. Howard won, 2-1. McLain got his walking papers and was claimed by Detroit the following week. He’d go on to win 131 big league games, including 31 in 1968.
Howard won 26.
It was always a “House of Horrors” for the White Sox, but on this day they got the last laugh.
The Sox spoiled the last Orioles home opener in old Memorial Stadium by ripping Baltimore, 9-1. Sammy Sosa clubbed two home runs off of Jeff Ballard to lead the rout. He’d knock in five runs on the afternoon. Jack McDowell went the distance for the win, striking out 10.
The White Sox hit six home runs, including the first two of José Abreu’s career, in a 15-3 rout of the Colorado Rockies at Coors Field. Avisaíl García adds two homers, with Tyler Flowers and Alexei Ramírez getting one apiece. The White Sox scored 11 times in the final three frames, turning a 4-3 squeaker into a 15-3 romp.