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Today in White Sox History: January 11

The South Siders take the Tresh out

Michael Tresh [far left] was one of five White Sox catchers in this 1939 spring training shot in Pasadena. Ten years later on this day, the club sold him to Cleveland.
| Acme
Brett Ballantini started at South Side Sox in 2018 after 20 years of writing on basketball, baseball and hockey, including time on the Blackhawks and White Sox beats. Follow him on Twitter @BrettBallantini and email your site feedback to brettballantini@yahoo.com

1881

A series of Tuesday baseball games started in Chicago.

Wait ... regular games, in Chicago ... in January? Yes, these games were played on ice, with pro and amateurs alike. They remain a regular winter staple for years.

[Author’s note: I was a part of a group that inadvertently continued this tradition nearly a century later, but it wasn’t so great for the pocketbook; Christmas Wiffle ball is found to send many frozen, plastic shards exploding into snowy space.]


1949

After 11 years and 981 games at catcher for the South Siders, Mike Tresh was sold to Cleveland. He would play just one more year in the majors.

Tresh ranks No. 6 on the all-time games caught list for the White Sox, with one remarkable twist: His 2.1 career WAR is four times less (Billy Sullivan, 8.4) than any other player on the list.


1973

Baseball owners adopted the designated hitter rule, but with the proviso that only AL teams were allowed to adopt the DH — and on a three-year experimental basis, at that. The “experiment” stretched almost 50 years before the NL adopted the rule in 2022.

Three months later, Mike Andrews stepped to the plate in the second inning on Opening Day, popping out as the first White Sox DH of all time. Andrews finished the day 1-for-3, with a double and a walk.


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