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Today in White Sox History: August 18

Early-career and late-season perfection

Hard to make a better trade than the one the White Sox made for Steve Renko, on this day 45 years ago.


Red Faber, pitching for the Class-B Dubuque Dubs in the Three-I (Iowa, Illinois, Indiana) League, threw a 3-0 perfect game against the Davenport Prodigals. Faber, 21, would make his MLB debut in 1914 for the White Sox, beginning a Hall of Fame career.

The Cascade, Iowa native never threw a no-hitter, much less a perfect game, in the majors, however.


He was a ship too late to save the drowning South Side Hit Men, but it wasn’t for lack of Steve Renko trying. The tall righthander was acquired from the Cubs for pitcher Larry Anderson and cash, and was basically unbeatable for the final six weeks of the season.

Renko went 5-0 (and the team was 6-2 in his starts, the only losses both by one run) with a 3.54 ERA (117 ERA+) and 3.13 FIP, adding up to 1.3 WAR in just eight starts.

As good as that late deal was in 1977, the White Sox helped curse their 1978 by swapping Renko and catcher Jim Essian to Oakland at the end of spring training for reliever Pablo Torrealba. The pair combined to put up 3.4 WAR for the A’s, while Torrealba was a -0.4 WAR pitcher in 28 games for the White Sox, released midway through the 1979 season and never to pitch in the majors again.