Today in White Sox History: September 4

Iron man, chipmunk cheeks: Fox played in more than five seasons’ worth of consecutive contests before a virus snapped his streak, just short of 800 games. (Topps)

Sept. 4, 1960 — A viral infection knocked Nellie Fox out of the lineup for the first time since August 1955. He played in 798 consecutive games (still the White Sox record) and 1,072 out of 1,073.

Sept. 4, 1961 — It was a strange start to a good White Sox career for pitcher Joe Horlen. Horlen entered the game at the Minnesota Twins wearing a blank jersey. That’s right … no name, no number, on the back!

(Only one other time in major league history has this happened: Eric Davis of the Cincinnati Reds, on May 19, 1984.)

Horlen allowed two hits in four innings of work, and got the win in the 9-5 decision. An unusual major league debut!

Sept. 4, 1995Robin Ventura hit a pair of grand slams in a 14-3 win over the Texas Rangers. He was the eighth player in history at the time to hit a pair in one game. His eight RBIs tied the White Sox franchise record.

Sept. 4, 2016 — And 21 years later in a wild slugfest in Minnesota, won by the Sox 13-11, first baseman José Abreu drove in seven runs. José had a pair of three-run home runs in the game, along with an RBI single. The homers came in the first and seventh innings. The seven RBIs are one off of the franchise record for a single game.

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Mark Liptak

Mark Liptak is originally from Chicago and has been a White Sox fan since 1960. He and his wife Zoe reside in Pocatello, Idaho where he is the radio voice as part of Idaho State athletics in volleyball, football, women's basketball and softball.

Mark went to the University of Kentucky. He’s been in the sports media profession since 1978, having worked in television sports in three markets between 1978 and 1994. He’s also written for numerous newspapers in addition to his radio duties.

Liptak has covered a Super Bowl, two Kentucky Derbys, an NCAA woman’s basketball Final Four and worked for CBS-TV during their coverage of the men’s NCAA basketball tournament’s opening rounds held in Boise in 2001. 

He is also a Chicago White Sox historian who has written for various web sites over the past 17 years, including the Chicago Baseball Museum and Chicago Now/Sox Net, a series of blogs and websites associated with the Chicago Tribune.

He and Zoe have been married for 30 years. Their son, Mason, and his family live in Longview, Texas.

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8 months ago

Ventura’s 2 GSs was part of a SABR trivia question last week. But I still enjoyed seeing it here, too. (heh) Fun Horlen story, too. Thanks.