2005 White Sox Hurlers Dominate
Chicago White Sox pitchers shouldered their burden equally in 2005. The team's four top starters -- Jon Garland, Mark Buehrle, Jose Contreras, and Freddy Garcia -- all pitched more than 200 innings, won at least 14 games, and sported ERAs below 3.90. Garland went 18-10 to lead the staff in victories. The White Sox led the American League in wins, ERA, complete games, and saves.
Texas's One-Two Punch
Mark Teixeira and Michael Young offered plenty of pop for the Rangers in 2005. Young won his first batting title (.331) and topped 200 hits for the third consecutive season. In addition, he cracked 24 homers and drove in 91 runs. Teixeira blasted 43 homers, plated 144 runs, and led the American League with 370 total bases. Alfonso Soriano (36 home runs) also contributed to the Rangers' immense total of 260 home runs.
Derrek Lee Takes a Shot at Triple Crown
Cubs first baseman Derrek Lee had topped the 30-homer mark twice in his career, but in 2005 he took his hitting to a new level, chasing the Triple Crown much of the season. His 46 homers and 107 RBI were topped by Andruw Jones, but he still finished first in batting (.335) and four other major categories. He placed third in National League MVP voting.
Bobby Abreu on Fire in HR Derby
Phillies outfielder Bobby Abreu belts his first home run during the 2005 Home Run Derby at Comerica Park in Detroit. He proceeded to knock an amazing 24 homers in the first round and finished with 41 overall (topping the previous best by 14!). On the season, he cracked 24 dingers and stole 31 bases.
Chris Burke Ends 18-Inning NLDS Game
Houston rookie Chris Burke belted a series-clinching, 18th-inning walk-off home run against Atlanta in game four of the 2005 NLDS. The historic clout ended a contest that featured grand slams by both teams and a two-out, game-tying homer by the Astros' Brad Ausmus in the ninth inning. The unsung hero was Houston's bullpen (including Roger Clemens), which held the Braves to one run over 13-plus innings.
2005 Astros Head to Their First Fall Classic
In 2005, the Astros reached the World Series for the first time in their 43-year history. Houston needed six games to subdue the Cardinals, and the closest thing to a blow-out was the Astros' 5-1 win in the finale. Three games were decided by one run. Clutch pitching by Roy Oswalt and Roger Clemens kept matters under control until the 'Stros offense could poke home the needed runs.
A.J. Pierzynski Helps Sox Win ALCS
A noncall on White Sox batter A.J. Pierzynski helped Chicago win game two of the 2005 ALCS. With two outs and the score 1-1 in the top of the ninth, Pierzynski swung and missed at strike three. But umpire Doug Eddings made no call because he believed catcher Josh Paul dropped the ball. So while the Angels' catcher rolled the ball to the mound and his teammates left the field, Pierzynski took off for first, leading to the run that gave the Sox the game. They wouldn't lose again in the series.
Geoff Blum's an Unsung Series Hero
In game three of the 2005 World Series, the White Sox had to fight back from a 4-0 deficit against Roy Oswalt, the MVP of the NLCS. Stunningly, they did it, with a five-run fifth. Chicago let Houston tie the game in the last of the eighth, but the Sox won in 14 innings after seldom-used defensive replacement Geoff Blum homered in the top of that frame.
The next page highlights key events and details from the 2005 baseball season.
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