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Mitch Ransdell/South Side Sox

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South Side Sox Player of the Week (May 26-31): Liam Hendriks

Cue the stadium-wide strobe lights: The late-inning laborer finally gets his South Side Sox due

Thirty years from now, Liam Hendriks’ comeback will be one of the most notable stories of the current White Sox era.

Deep in the depths of a decade of subpar Chicago baseball, the Aussie closer’s madcap enthusiasm became a rare reason for Sox fans to get to their feet and scream after every pitch.

Then, after a brutal cancer diagnosis, the 34-year-old Hendriks had to put his passion on the back burner and focus on his own health — a difficult task for a ballplayer accustomed to giving so much of his time back to the community.

That all came to a close last week on the South Side when music blasted, strobe lights flashed, and a cancer-free Liam Hendriks took to the mound for the first time in eight months.

The results of that comeback game are insignificant. What really matters is the support of Liam’s family and friends. What really matters are the efforts of Liam’s doctors and nurses.

What matters is the fire within him.

Liam’s story echoes another era of White Sox history, when pitcher Monty Stratton lost a leg to an accidental gunshot wound before mounting a courageous comeback in the minor leagues. That episode took place in the late 1940’s — a similarly bland era of Chicago baseball.

And just like Stratton’s story, Liam’s comeback will stand out as a triumph among a sea of defeats.

2023 South Side Sox Players of the Week

Oscar Colás (February 25-March 2)
Andrew Vaughn (March 3-8)
Carlos Pérez (March 9-16)
Oscar Colás (March 17-22)
Cactus League MVP: Oscar Colás
Dylan Cease (March 30-April 5)
Luis Robert Jr. (April 6-12)
Lucas Giolito (April 13-20)
Jake Burger (April 21-27)
Lucas Giolito (April 28- May 4)
Hanser Alberto (May 5-11)
Luis Robert Jr. (May 12-18)
Michael Kopech (May 19-25)
Liam Hendriks (May 26-31)

Top 10 MVP Standings

Lucas Giolito (37.3)
Luis Robert Jr. (22.1)
Romy González (20.1)
Jake Burger (19.7)
Seby Zavala (18.9)
Gavin Sheets (18.1)
Oscar Colás (17.1)
Zach Remillard (16.4)
Michael Kopech (12.2)
Jesse Scholtens (10.7)

Top 10 Cold Cat Standings

Tim Anderson (-38.4)
Joe Kelly (-16.2)
Yoán Moncada (-18.1)
Yasmani Grandal (-15.8)
Aaron Bummer (-15.1)
Alex Colomé (-11.8)
White Sox Offense (-10.0)
Everyone, Seriously, Everyone (-9.9)
Keynan Middleton (-8.6)
Declan Cronin (-8.1)

Two big movers coming in from off the board to substantial placement. Gavin Sheets is back in the MVP hunt, launching himself into sixth place, while Joe Kelly had been operating on the Cold Cats periphery but snuck into second place behind runaway leader Tim Anderson with another rough outing/week.

Writer Standings

Joe Resis remains on top, but Tommy Barbee is charging hard.

If you’re interested in seeing more of Mitch’s work, or if you’d like to purchase original drawings or prints, contact him via Twitter (@soxsketcher), Instagram (@southsidesharpie), or by e-mail at Thanks for supporting local artists!

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