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Today in White Sox History: February 2

The South Siders make history by drafting ... a replacement player

Joel Skinner had every opportunity to make his mark with the White Sox, but feel short of doing so.
| George Gojkovich/Getty Images
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

1964

Red Faber, who pitched all 20 of his seasons with the White Sox, was named to the Hall of Fame by the Veterans Committee.

Astoundingly Faber, whose 67.7 pitching WAR ranked 11th at the time of his retirement (and still ranks 38th all-time, 90 seasons later), never received more than 30.9% BBWAA voting support over 16 (!) different votes — and 10 times failed to poll at as much as 5%.

Faber won 254 games in his career and completed 273, with a 3.15 ERA (119 ERA+) and 3.34 FIP. He pitched more than 4,000 innings and even saved 27 (including an AL-leading four in his rookie season, 1914).

He also went 3-1 in the 1917 World Series, pitching more than half (27 of 52) of the innings in the Series and finishing with the second-most Championship WPA (20.94) of any White Sox player — second to, get this, Chick Gandil’s 21.22. If not for the flu that sidelined him but for one game after August 19, the South Siders may have won the 1919 World Series, with or without the Black Sox fix.


1982

One of the concessions made by players in settling the 1981 strike was the creation of a free agent compensation draft (the modern-day equivalent is a team surrendering a high amateur draft pick when signing a free agent).

With Ed Farmer signing with the Philadelphia Phillies in the offseason, the White Sox made the first such draft pick in history, selecting Pittsburgh Pirates catcher Joel Skinner from the compensation pool after losing Farmer.

In 131 career games on the South Side over four seasons, Skinner was the definition of a replacement player, with 0.0 WAR. He was traded to the New York Yankees during the 1986 season after a disastrous decision by GM Ken Harrelson to move Carlton Fisk to left field in order to open up more playing time for Skinner behind the plate.

Skinner returned to the White Sox and managed in their minor league system from 2012-16.


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