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Could Little Looie have been a Cardinal in 1970? That was part of Roland Hemond’s plan.
Louis Reqeuna/MLB via Getty Images

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Today in White Sox History: September 15

A triple-homer game, and a triple pair of triples game, take your pick


In a doubleheader nightcap hosting Milwaukee, the White Sox hit an MLB-record five triples in the eighth inning — and three of them were consecutive! Sam Mertes, Fred Hartman and Herm McFarland started off the barrage with three three-baggers in a row, and after Frank Isbell failed to triple, two more were hit consecutively, by Frank Shugart and Billy Sullivan. The second-biggest crowd at South Side Park that year (and, possibly, second-biggest in the AL: 18,000) saw the White Sox rally, from down 4-2, with a seven-run eighth to pace a sweep of the Brewers, 5-4 and 9-4.

Billy Hoy had hit a triple earlier in the game, giving the White Sox a total of six, setting the American League record — it would be 19 years before anyone tied that single-game mark. The White Sox also had three triples in the opener (including from Hoy and Mertes), making nine total for the doubleheader.

With two weeks left in the season, the White Sox were 79-48 and in first place by seven games, on their way to winning the first major-league AL pennant.

Nineteen years later, almost to the day, the White Sox again hit six triples, again in a regulation, nine-inning game. And in-between the two contests, in fact earlier in the 1920 season, the White Sox had another six-triple game (albeit needing 16 innings to get there). Given just 15 games in MLB history where a lineup has hit six triples or more, the White Sox own 20% of those contests.


Ted Lyons Day was held at Comiskey Park. The “Baylor Bearcat” would eventually win 260 games with the club and be elected to the Hall of Fame in 1955. His No. 16 would be retired by the White Sox in 1987.

This was the second time Lyons was honored this way, the first time coming in 1933.

This game was the opener of a twin bill, with Lyons getting the complete game, 5-1, win with a three-hitter.

Also notable in this game was the debut of


In his first at-bat in the American League after many seasons in the NL, pinch-hitter deluxe Smoky Burgess belted a game-tying home run at Detroit. The White Sox would eventually win the game, 3-2, in 10 innings, keeping their pennant hopes alive.

Burgess would lead the league in pinch-hits in 1965 and 1966. His 20 pinch hits in the 1966 season tied the big-league record originally set by Ed Coleman in 1936.


Shortly after taking over as the new director of player personnel, Roland Hemond targeted the man who’d eventually (in his words) “save” the franchise. Hemond called Cardinals GM “Bing” Devine to see what the chances were of making a deal for slugger Dick Allen — offering franchise icon Luis Aparicio in return. Devine turned him down — but 15 months later Hemond would get his man from the Dodgers, for Tommy John and Steve Huntz. The Dodgers also wanted Terry Forster, but Hemond refused to include the young, hard-throwing lefthander in the trade.


The White Sox set the franchise record for most runs scored in the sixth inning of a game when they tallied 11 in a 12-0 win over the Mariners at Comiskey Park. LaMarr Hoyt got the win, his 21st on the season. Even more impressive regarding the run total is that the game only lasted seven innings due to rain.

Harold Baines had a grand slam, as the Sox cut their magic number down to two for winning the division. The Sox sent 17 men to the plate in the sixth, with nine hits.


Owner Jerry Reinsdorf fired the man who’d become by far his most effective GM, Larry Himes, citing “personality differences.” Himes drafted and signed White Sox future stars like Frank Thomas, Jack McDowell, Robin Ventura and Alex Fernandez.

During the press conference announcing the hiring of Ron Schueler as the new GM, Reinsdorf issued his famous “Point A to Point B to Point C” comment. Later, in a rare radio appearance, he was candid on the subject with host Chet Coppock: “The fact is, Larry Himes cannot get along with anybody. You can hardly find anybody in the Sox organization who wasn’t happy when Larry Himes left.”

Farm director Al Goldis was also fired.


Frank Thomas slugged his 215th home run in a White Sox uniform, breaking Carlton Fisk’s team record. Thomas homered three times at Fenway Park, off of Boston’s Tim Wakefield, yet the White Sox lost the game, 9-8. Thomas went 3-for-4 with three RBIs and four runs.


In an 11-10 loss in Milwaukee, White Sox rookies Mario Valdez and Jeff Abbott both hit their first big-league home runs. Valdez got his in the fifth inning, Abbott an inning later.

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