Opening Day in Chicago is always a trick shot and today is no different. The tarp is still on the field and rain is falling. Tom Skilling says there's pea to marble sized hail in the forecast. In the event of a rain delay we'll bring you play-by-play commentary of the 1983 ALCS.
Fox Sports Net is showing that gruesome sports blooper show "You've Gotta See This!" Today's show features a harness jockey who has a heart attack in the middle of a race, falls limp in his cart before tumbling out and being trampled by the other horses. I'll tell you one thing, I definitely didn't gotta see that. Lovely stuff. That's worse than the Sox's roadtrip in Kansas City.
OK, we're back. The tarp is still on the field but the Sox are introducing some of their all-time greats, the likes of Chico Carrasquel, Minnie Minoso and Jack McDowell, who looks like he's dyed his hair and outfitted himself at the local Goodwill.
And back to the gruesome show. The rain continues.
I'm looking at the doppler and there are cells of heavy rain well into Iowa. Here in downtown Chicago the sky is a Mountain Dew color. At my apartment the ceiling is leaking, no doubt.
Hawk says the radar shows there may be an opportunity around 4:30 to start the game and, perhaps, squeeze five innings in. We'll see.
The tarp is off and the Detroit Tigers are being introduced. We'll have baseball--and I'm not happy.
A few boos for former Cubs interim manager Bruce Kimm and for Billy Koch and Jerry Manuel. Sox fans not too happy about that trip to Kansas City.
Sign seen above the Sox's dugout: "U.S. Sellout Field."
First inning Esteban Loaiza takes the mound for the Sox and we're finally underway. Loaiza faces Gene Kingsale and throws a strike right down the middle. I didn't think it was possible, but the Tigers actually have more players than the Royals than I've never heard of. Sox fans, the few that stuck around on this miserable day, are very vocal as Kingsale bounces out. Omar Infante pops out to second baseman D'Angelo Jimenez in short right for the second out. After Bobby Higginson walked, Dimitri Young hit about 400 foul balls before finally striking out swinging.
Nate Cornejo, who's about the size of Brian Urlacher, gets Jimenez to bounce out to second. One pitch, one out. Jose Valentin rips one down the right-field line for a double. Why would fans try and reach out and grab a ball hit by a player on the home team? I don't get that. I thought Sox fans were supposed to be the ones who know baseball. Anyway, here's Frank Thomas with one out and a man on second. Big Frank reaches across the plate and sends one to the wall in right, where Higginson makes a nice catch leaping against the wall. That was two feet away from being a two-run dinger. Valentin went to third on the play. Magglio Ordonez slaps one under the shortstop's glove and the Sox take an early lead.
The Heineken picks to click: Hawk: D'Angelo Jimenez; DJ: Carlos Lee; the crew: Miguel Olivio; me: someone say Heineken?
Paul Konerko lines out to the Ramon Santiago at second to end the inning.
Sox 1, Tigers 0
DH Dean Palmer, who, if memory serves, is the guy who started that big donnybrook with the Sox in 2000. Loaiza doesn't bean him and Palmer flies out to center. Carlos Pena fans and governor Rod Blagojevich has joined Hawk and DJ in the booth. Let's make this quick. Eric Munson grounds out to Konerko at first for a one-two-three inning. We're rolling now. I might get home by midnight.
Carlos Lee rips a single to left to start things and Joe Crede knocks one to the deepest part of the park for a two-run homer. Rain hasn't affected the fireworks. Aaron Rowand follows with a single of his own. Olivo fans and Jimenez lines a double in the right-center gap, scoring Rowand. Big Nate Cornejo isn't long for this game. And here comes Alan Trammel to yank the pitcher, who's hat is about four sizes too small for his mellon. Might as well stick a propeller on top of that beanie. Knuckleballer Steve Sparks is the new pitcher. And his hat looks a little big. Who's the Tigers' equipment manager? Catcher Brandon Inge has traded in his glove for something that resembles 16-inch pizza and this ought to be interesting. Valentin grounds out and Frank takes a knuckler off his ridiculously large elbow pad. Can't be too upset with that. Ordonez flies out.
Sox 4, Tigers 0