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WHITE SOX PLAYOFF LOG: Things that haven’t happened…Yet…

Maayyybe there’s been some time travel involved…maybe not…likely not. (Photos from the Back to the Future Musical, Fox Sports and the Tribune)

Yes, yes, yes the games haven’t quite started and the team still has some things to sort out before they head to Houston. But that’s no reason not to present a recap of the playoffs!! Is this from the future? From a possible future? From getting inebriated and watching Back to the Future? Great Scott!!!

Or, is this the mad ramblings of a guy who once played a character called “Nostradumbass” on a radio station?

Regardless of what you believe or the actual truth, sit back and enjoy reliving the White Sox 2021 Playoffs that haven’t happened yet.

Thursday, October 7: ALDS Game 1. The White Sox get to Houston’s starter early for three runs on a Robert bomb and get to the bullpen with another in the 5th after Anderson and Moncada double back to back. Lance Lynn gutted out 5.2 innings but left tied after 4 straight singles. Garrett Crochet got Michael Brantley to end the inning. The game stayed tied until Craig Kimbrel gave up first base on a wild pitch strike three, followed by a Jose Altuve double on a slider that he shouldn’t have hit. Immediately Sox fans cried cheater. The Sox had a chance in the 9th after a leadoff double against Ryan Pressley, but pinch runner Billy Hamilton was only able to get to third after a Leury bunt, a pop up by a pinch hitting Zack Collins and a ball absolutely crushed by TA that was played perfectly by the Astros OF. The Sox were unfazed, but down 1 game.

Friday October 8: ALDS Game 2: Lucas Giolito absolutely steamrolls the Astros for 7 innings, only giving up an Altuve homer on a changeup that he should not have been able to recognize. Meanwhile, the Sox get to the Astros staff in a big way, with Grandal, Abreu and Anderson with solo homers and Gavin Sheets with a 3-run jack. Aaron Bummer and Liam Hendriks take care of the 8th and 9th, with Altuve hitting a Hendriks slydah off the wall under suspicious circumstances. The game is notable not just for the win but Adam Engel appearing to hurt his groin, although he would be ready for Sunday.

Sunday October 10: ALDS Game 3: After the Soxtoberfest event at Cork and Kerry at the Park, fans are treated to a home playoff game for the first time in 13 years. Dylan Cease strikes out 11 Astros over 5 innings, giving up two earned runs on a Jose Altuve homer that appeared to be on a tee prior to Cease delivering the pitch. Reynaldo Lopez followed Cease, but gave up two more before Kimbrel and Hendriks shut down the 8th and 9th. Offensively the Sox had a Grandal solo shot and RBI doubles from Abreu and Jimenez. An Adam Engel single in the ninth set up a two run walk off by Tim Anderson. Unfortunately Engel split a toenail rounding third and was now questionable for game 4, which the Sox could eliminate the Atros.

Monday October 11: ALDS Game 4: The Sox surprisingly left Carlos Rodón off the ALDS roster in a salute to General Soreness, even though Carlos declared himself healthy. Dallas Keuchel got the start, but Tony pulled him after 4 innings even though the Sox lead 1-0 on a Robert homer. Michael Kopech, who Tony had managed to save through the first three games somehow, goes 3 giving up 1 run. A close call against Aaron Bummer and a near miss against Craig Kimbrel, Liam kept things tied in the ninth but the Sox failed to get anything going in the bottom half of the ninth. Ryan Tepera gave up a run in the top of the tenth on a seeing eye grounder just past César Hernandez with two outs. Replays showed what looked like Jose Altuve tripping César and kicking the ball past him, even though Altuve was supposedly in the dugout at the time. Ryan Pressly started the 10th by hitting Jose Abreu, which somehow made Adam Engel pull a quad. After Eloy struck out, Luis Robert scorched one off the wall to tie the game and Yasmani Grandal hit one right in the Podsednik seat. ALDS over!!

Friday October 15: ALCS Game 1: In a bit of a shocker, Carlos Rodón got the call and in the early going against the Yankees was tough. During the 5th the velocity dropped a bit, and after a Giancarlo Stanton bomb that hasn’t landed yet, Rodón left the game behind 2-1. The Sox got to Jordan Montgomery in the 6th after he loaded the bases and served up a bases clearing single to Andrew Vaughn. The Sox leading 4-2, the Yankees cut into the lead against Kimbrel in the 8th with an Aaron Judge dinger. Liam Hendriks shut down the bottom of the New York order in the 9th and the Sox were up 1-0 in the series.

Saturday October 16: ALCS Game 2: Gerrit Cole and Lance Lynn traded off tightrope innings for 5 of them apiece, but the Sox couldn’t figure out Luis Severino out of the ‘pen and this time Michael Kopech struggled with Stanton and Judge. The Sox loaded the bases in the 8th but failed to get anything home and in the 9th couldn’t take advantage of an Andrew Vaughn leadoff hit and pinch run stolen base by Billy Hamilton against Aroldis Chapman. Rumor has it Jose Altuve is in the stands with a laser pointer. But the Sox fell 3-1 in the game and the series was tied.

Monday October 18: ALCS Game 3: Lucas Giolito got tagged by Judge and Stanton each, but toughed out 6.2 innings albeit with 5 runs given up. The Yankees’ Nestor Cortez baffled the Sox through 6. The Sox bullpen held up but ultimately an Anthony Rizzo insurance homer was too much to overcome. A forgettable game made worse when Adam Engel sprained an ankle trying to run down a flyball. The Sox left the game in trouble, down 2-1 in the series.

Tuesday October 19: ALCS Game 4: Needing a win, Dylan Cease got the ball and went absolutely nowhere with it, getting tagged for 6 runs through three before settling a bit in the 4th and 5th. Meanwhile Corey Kluber allowed 6 runs after giving up a Moncada grand slam and then having Andrew Heaney allow Eloy to homer in 3 more in a wild 4th. The teams traded runs but ultimately a ninth inning Abreu solo shot into right field off Jonathon Loasiga is the difference, as Liam Hendriks tossed a perfect 9th for a 9-8 win and a tied series.

Wednesday October 20: ALCS Game 5: Rodón returns, but isn’t as sharp going only four before Reynaldo Lopez relieved him. The game tied at that point, Lopez gave up 2 more, but the Yankees bullpen work went for naught when Robert, Grandal and Vaughn went consecutive bombs off Aroldis Chapman, who was going for his second inning in the ninth. On the broadcast it is noted that Vaughn is very reminiscent of Jose Altuve, but no one can figure out why until Vaughn claims post game that he didn’t bat in the 9th and woke up in the clubhouse missing his uniform. Hendriks slammed the door in the bottom half. His celebratory yell caused Adam Engel to temporarily have his left leg detach, but it got better. The Sox retook the series advantage, 3-2.

Friday October 22: ALCS Game 6: Lance Lynn dominated the Yankees through 7, with Bummer, Kimbrel and Hendriks following suit, with only Kimbrel allowing a Stanton homer. Gavin Sheets and Yas Grandal go back to back off Gerrit Cole in the 3rd with Abreu on after being hit by a pitch, the Sox winning 3-1 and celebrating a return to the World Series. Joe Buck erroneously claims that it’s the first time since 1959. Hurt by that mistake, Adam Engel was confined to a wheelchair during the post game celebration and rolled over Jose Altuve.

Tuesday October 26: WS Game 1: Lucas Giolito drew the ball against the Giants’ Kevin Gausman. Giolito fires 6 strong with three runs for the quality start, while a TA leadoff homer and a subsequent Robert bases-clearing double give the Sox an edge. Crochet, Kopech and Hendriks closed it out with Grandal splashing one into the cove for good measure. Off to a great start, the Sox were up 1-0 and on a very unlikely 3-game road win streak.

Wednesday October 27: WS Game 2: Rodón got the start and was good through a solid 5.2, needing a Ryan Tepera bailout against Kris Bryant to preserve a nothing-nothing tie as the Sox struggled with Logan Webb. Garrett Crochet struggled with control and the Giants tagged him for three, and never really looked back from there. An Abreu RBI double knocked in TA in the 8th but two long fly outs later the rally was dead. Adam Engel was hurt trying to leg out a ninth inning double and was shut down for the remainder of the series. Somewhat unsettlingly Tony called Engel “Old Yeller” in his post game presser and Engel has yet to resurface.

Friday October 29: WS Game 3: 16 years and 6 days later, the World Series returns to the Southside, though it was accidentally stated by several national media sources that the Giants were playing an intrasquad game in Evanston. Much like Game 2 in 2005, Jose Abreu would hit a grand slam in the 7th inning like a prior star 1B, and the Sox’ leadoff hitter would walk it off in the ninth to right with TA giving a bat flip that even the French judge would give a ten. Dylan Cease gave up 4 over 6 innings but with 12 K’s, and Bummer gave up 1 in the 8th to tie the game, which set up Anderson. The Sox were now up 2-1 in the Series, with a very good pitching matchup on deck.

Saturday October 30: WS Game 4: A rested Lance Lynn went 8, TA was 4-4 with another leadoff homer, Eloy finally parked one himself and the Sox cruise to a 4-1 win as the Giants wasted Anthony DeSclafani’s start. With Giolito set to pitch in the potential clincher, the Sox were poised and ready to take Game 5… and the series…at home this time.

Sunday October 31: WS Game 5: Giolito’s adrenaline got the best of him and the Giants went up big early on a Kris Bryant 3-run homer. The Sox battled back and made a game of it at 6-4, but Reynaldo Lopez and Jose Ruiz were each whacked as well for another 5 runs in the 4th and 5th innings. The Giants get their mojo back for a day and whomped the Sox 11-4. The series narrowed to 3-2, the Giants were pumped to go back home while Sox fans were getting worried.

Tuesday November 2: WS Game 6: The Sox were running on empty a bit in the bullpen, but Carlos Rodón somehow battles through 5.1 innings, with Dylan Cease coming on in relief and getting a couple innings in as well (Giolito would start game 7 after only going 1.2 on the 31st). The Sox and Giants were tied going into extras. Kopech, who was used for an inning the game before, went 3 innings in the extras, only getting a scare when Buster Posey nearly knocked one out that Eloy caught at the wall. In the 12th, Gavin Sheets launches one coming off the bench, and one Liam Hendriks inning later(featuring two very emphatic K’s), at 11:21pm Central time the 2021 White Sox won the World Series.

And immediately Sox fans started talking about whether or not to extend Rodón and complained about Leury Garcia.

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