Robinson hit 29 home runs that year and drove in 117 runs, as the Sox went 81-73-1.
Coming over from the Bulls organization, Brooks Boyer was named White Sox vice president of marketing, replacing the taciturn and aloof Rob Gallas. Boyer immediately instituted a series of great ad campaigns (including “Sox Pride” and “Win or Die Trying”) that keyed interest, tweaked the Cubs and generated excitement among the fan base.
It was the first big moment in what would be a long and stellar White Sox career for José Abreu. The Cuban native smashed a two-out, walk-off grand slam off Grant Balfour to beat the Rays, 9-6. The rookie tallied three hits and six RBIs in the game.
Abreu would cap off his rookie season by garnering the American League Rookie of the Year award from both The Sporting News and the BBWAA for blasting 36 home runs, with 35 doubles, 80 runs scored, 107 RBIs, a .317 batting average and leading the league in slugging percentage (.581).
Relief pitcher Matt Albers threw his 30th consecutive scoreless outing, breaking the White Sox record set by Jesse Crain. Albers’ streak dated back to Aug. 5, 2015 and spanned 33 innings. Ironically, Albers’ streak was snapped in a game several days later, on April 30 in Baltimore, when a José Abreu error caused two unearned runs to cross the plate, charged to Albers.