Today in White Sox History: January 27

Defensive all-timer: Few defensive plays have ever been better than Iguchi’s acrobatic assist in 2006. (@WhiteSox)


2005
So who needs scouts? (just joking …) White Sox GM Ken Williams signed Japanese second baseman Tadahito Iguchi after … watching videotape on him. Iguchi turned into a very solid second baseman and second hitter in the lineup, delivering defense, home runs and RBIs to a team that would go on to take the World Series.

Iguchi’s three-run home run in Game 2 of the 2005 ALDS turned the game around against Boston. The following year, Iguchi’s single in the 19th inning on July 9 beat the Red Sox 6-5 — that game was tied for the fifth-longest in franchise history.

On April 15, 2006 Iguchi turned in one of the most incredible defensive plays in MLB history by throwing out Toronto’s Bengie Molina in the ninth inning of a 4-2 White Sox win. Iguchi threw the ball to first base sailing horizontally off the ground and from a most usual throwing angle.

“Coming off the bat, I know it was going to be a tough play but I knew I still had the time to get him out at first base,” Iguchi told reporters after the game. “I knew it wasn’t an impossible position to still make a throw. But I knew if I was going down I might not be coming back up again. Right now, I feel it in my lower back.”

 

Author profile

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 Derby’s, 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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wilburwoodwastheman
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wilburwoodwastheman
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Yep. Iguchi’s upside down throw is the best defensive play I ever saw. Better than Yaz, for sure!

Right Size Wrong Shape
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Right Size Wrong Shape
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Other than the ALDS homer, my favorite Iguchi memory is the grand slam he hit after the Pierzynski / Barret fight. I’m excited for the return of crowds that were as hot as the one after that moment.

Tommy Barbee
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That was one of the best plays I’ve seen in person. Iguchi was really an underrated player for the Sox.

WIN05
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WIN05
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Tadahito had some great moments. Remember watching that play on tv. Biggest one was the 3 run homer off that piece of garbage Wells in the playoffs. There is no other answer.