Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Beautiful Night All Around


Who says White Sox fans have no class?

Frank Thomas returned to the Cell last night and upon his first trip to the plate was greeted by a loud, warm standing ovation from the sellout crowd. It was a moment of pure love and appreciation and it was good to see. Sure, Thomas had plenty of questionable moments while on the South Side, but Sox fans are smart and know what he meant to the team and remember all the good times and aren't afraid to let some rough waters pass beneath the bridge.

Heck, Jim Thome was roundly booed in his return to Cleveland a few weeks ago and he's considered to be just about the nicest, most liked guy in all of baseball. Fans can be finicky, assholes even.

So kudos to White Sox fans for showing the world how it's done. Cubs fans should take note. Not that Cubs fans have booed a returning player lately, but they're a vile, depraved lot just in general, aren't they?

Once the standing ovation was complete, Big Frank hit a solo home run - a towering shot to left field just as he had done so many times in a Sox uniform - and it somehow made perfect sense. You had to smile. Yeah, it sucked for the Sox, but you had to tip your hat and hand it to the big guy as he hobbled around the bases.

Of course, when he hit another solo shot in his next at-bat it wasn't so fun anymore. In fact, it was kind of weird. And the boos poured down. But that's perfectly acceptable. There's a division to win, right? The South Side isn't runnng a charity show for aging sluggers here.

But whatever. The Sox overcame a 4-0 deficit and yet another shaky outing from Jon Garland (what the fuck, Garland?) to win 5-4 in the tenth inning. The Super Subs, Rob Mackowiak and Pablo Ozuna, played vital roles, Mackowiak hitting a two-run homer off of Huston Street in the eighth and Ozuna beating out an RBI-bunt to win it.

Fireworks. Big Frank's return. And a dramatic Sox win. It just doesn't get much better than that.

Oh, and Ozzie was ejected, which is always fun.

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