It was only the beginning for him: White Sox pitcher Billy Pierce threw a one-hitter, the first of the four he’d have in his career. Pierce shut down the Yankees at Comiskey Park, 5-0. The only Yankees hit that afternoon came off the bat of infielder Billy Johnson, who singled to right in the fifth inning. Pierce struck out seven for the afternoon. Two of the five Sox runs were unearned because of an error by Johnson.
White Sox pitchers Jim Wilson and Dick Donovan both fired shutouts, beating the Orioles in a doubleheader at Baltimore. The Sox won, 3-0 and 4-0.
Later that day, the Sox acquired pitcher Bob Shaw as part of a four-player deal with Detroit. Shaw would come up big for the Sox during the 1959 pennant-winning season, going 18-6 with a 2.69 ERA.
Shaw began that season in the bullpen, working with Sox pitching coach Ray Berres. After some refinements, he was given a start in Boston where he shut out the Red Sox, 5-0. After that, Shaw became a regular in the starting rotation, and would cap off his year by winning a game in the World Series against the Dodgers at the Coliseum, 1-0, beating Sandy Koufax.
With a 2-for-4 effort in a 2-1, walk-off loss at Fenway Park, Ken Berry extended his hit streak to 20 games. At the time, that tied the center fielder for ninth-longest hit streak in White Sox history.
No big countdown ended up necessary, however, as Berry went 0-for-3 two days later in the next Sox game, a 1-0 win over the Yankees back home at Comiskey Park.
Over the course of Berry’s streak (which began on May 28), he hit .354, with just five extra-base hits among 29 overall. The White Sox, in first or near for the duration of the stretch, went 9-11. And Berry was caught stealing in four of five attempts during his hitting streak!
Berry’s streak remains tied for the 16th-longest in franchise history.
It was a move made at the trading deadline that showed great foresight by White Sox GM Roland Hemond. Hemond shipped pitcher Stan Bahnsen (who never recaptured his magic from 1972) to the A’s for pitcher Dave Hamilton and prospect Chet Lemon.
Hamilton would save 25 games for the White Sox, win 16 more and never have an ERA of more than 3.61. Lemon would go on to a pair of All-Star Games representing the Sox, and would become one of the best center fielders in baseball. Offensively, he led the league with 44 doubles in 1979. In his six full years with the Sox, Lemon would collect 278 extra-base hits and drive in 347 runs. His ability to cover ground, especially in spacious Comiskey Park, was unmatched in the league.
With the White Sox going nowhere, GM Roland Hemond began looking toward the future. He traded third baseman Eric Soderholm to the Rangers for two players, one of whom was Chicago native Ed Farmer. Farmer would go on to make the All-Star team the next year, finish with 30 saves, and become a top closer.
In his three seasons with the club Farmer saved 54 games, with 13 wins. After his playing career, his association with the Sox resumed as a broadcaster in 1992 until his death in April 2020.
White Sox GM Roland Hemond swapped second basemen with the Mariners, getting Julio “Juice” Cruz for Tony Bernazard. Cruz energized the bottom half of the order, stole 24 bases, drove in 40 runs and provided stellar defense to help the Sox go on a rampage and win the Western Division by a then-record 20 games over second-place Kansas City.
White Sox slugger Carlos Lee established a team record, when he got a hit in 28 straight games. It broke the old mark, held by Luke Appling and Albert Belle. Lee ripped 45 hits in the streak (equaling his uniform number), with 11 doubles and 22 RBIs. Oddly, though, he only hit one home run in the streak.