Went to watch Game #2 with Big Mike at the home of KevinS & DawnS. DonS was invited to come, but chose not to. Before the game we drove down to Greektown, one block from there place, where I got some veggie Mousaka, Saganaki, Greek beer, & Big Mike had a salad. What’s wrong with this picture? Big Mike was involved in a Walk-a-thon for the City of Hope, he did one for PAWS recently too. I mistakingly told CLuke Big Mike was involved in a 5K run, to which CLuke was amazed. He kept asking, “Big Mike? Our Big Mike?” When the topic came up later, it was decided the only way Big Mike would be involved in a 5K run would be if the ice cream truck he was pursuing wouldn’t stop. After filling our bellys we walked to see DawnS. KevinS & company were at the Bear game, but it wasn’t bad watching the first place Bears beat the Baltimore Ravens on their 42 inch high definition TV, while it was raining & cold outside. So far, so good, the last place Green Bay Packers had blown a 17-0 lead on the Minnesota Vikings to lose on a 50+ yard Paul Edinger field goal as time ran out. Life was good!

A couple of southpaws were starting game two, Mark Buehrle for the White Sox and Andy Pettitte for Houston. No wonder the Yankees aren’t in the World Series, ARod’s lack of production in the ALCS aside, three of the four starting pitchers in the first two games of the Series were cut loose by King George Steinbrenner. But the Yankees get enough press when they actually do something, this is about the White Sox! Fox-TV almost missed Morgan Ensberg homer on the first pitch of the 2nd inning for the Stros, putting the Sox down a run. The bottom of the 2nd was kind of strange. Carl Everett struckout, Aaron Rowand singled to left, A.J. Pierzynski lifted a high fly ball to left off the wall which Chris Burke couldn’t catch, but Rowand was going back to first to tag, so he only ended up at 2nd. Joe Crede shot a ball into right, scoring Rowand, and sending A.J. to 3rd. Then Juan Uribe popped to Craig Biggio, the ball went off Biggio’s glove, Jason Lane RF forced Crede at 2nd, and Pierzynski scored giving the Sox a one run lead. In the Astros third the game became tied when Willy Taveras scored on a Lance Berkman sac fly after tripling to right. Houston took a two run lead in the 5th when Brad Ausmus doubled off Crede’s glove, first thing all series that escaped Joe’s D. He stayed there when Adam Everett, ugliest man in baseball, K’d and Biggio grounded out. But then Willy Taveras beat out an infield hit just out of Crede’s reach, putting runners on the corners with two out. Lance Berkman doubled driving in both runners. Eric Bruntlett replaced Craig Biggio at second and Dan Wheeler took over on the hill for Andy Pettitte for Houston as the White Sox stepped in there in the 7th. Crede fouled out, Juan Uribe doubled, Scott Podsednik K’d, Tadahito Iguchi walked on a fullcount, and then Jermaine Dye was hit by a pitch. There was some contraversy as replays showed the ball off Dye’s bat, not his hand. But the call was made. The night before two Astro batters were hit consecutively, but nothing was said, even though I certainly couldn’t see where the second batter was hit, and neither guy tried to get out of the way. Also in the first game Phil Garner setup a doubleplay situation in which A.J. Pierzynski grounded into 3-6-1 DP. Fox-TV said nothing, no replays were shown, but there was no way 2nd base was touched by the Astros on the play. But this HBP was shown, over and over and over again. Chad Qualls was brought on to face Paul Konerko with the bases loaded, two outs, and the game on the line. Paulie always takes a strike, but not this time, as he sent the offering high & deep over the leftfield wall for a grand slam, and a two run Sox lead. Cliff Politte relieved Buehrle and set the Stros down in order in the 8th as Fox-TV replayed A.J. Pierzynski’s drop third strike call again versus the Angles. And showed some more angles of Dye’s HBP off his bat, again it was all about the umpires.

Bobby Jenks was called on in the 9th to close it out for the Sox. Jeff Bagwell fouled off a number of pitches before lining a low heater into centerfield for a leadoff base knock. Jason Lane was burnt by high heat. Jenks walked Chris Burke on four pitches, Brad Ausmus grounded to Paulie unassisted, moving the tying runs to 2nd & 3rd with two outs. We all felt pretty good as Ex-Cub Jose Vizcaino was sent up as the pinch hitter for the ugly man. Both runners scored as Vizcaino lined the first Jenks pitch he saw into leftfield, Burke was only at 3rd when Podsednik picked up the ball in shallow leftfield, but Burke scored anyway on a marvelous slide as Scotty’s throw tailed a little bit toward firstbase, what a letdown. Brad Lidge was brought on to pitch the bottom of the 9th with the game tied. Normally Lidge is brought on to close games out, but Phil Garner wanted to make sure he got another chance to bat. Uribe ripped a hard hit flyball to center. Then Scott Podsednik blasted a 2-1 fastball just over the CF fence for a White Sox winner!!! Podsednik wasn’t sure it was gettting out as he was flying around the bases until the umpire signaled home run. Scotty didn’t hit a single home run in 507 regular season at bats, but did hit one out against the Bosox in the Division Series, and had 12 two years ago for the Brewers. The Fox-TV announcers had just said alot of people thought Garner should have used Lidge in the 6th game against the Redbirds to get the taste of Albert Pujols game winning homer out of his mouth. Then he said, “It seems as though he’s gotten the bad taste out of his mouth”, just as Scott Podsednik’s drive was touching down over the wall, ending the game. Brad Lidge is one of baseball’s premier relief pitchers, but has been stung by game winning homers in his last two post season appearances. It reminded me of when the Yankees knocked Byung-Hyun Kim around in the 2002 Fall Classic, he was never the same again. The Bears are in first, the Packers are in last, the White Sox are two wins away from a World Championship. I never paid much credence to this religious crap, but maybe there is a God. White Sox win! Two more wins to go! LET’S GO WHITE SOX!!!

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