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The 2005 American League Championship Series (ALCS), the second round of the 2005 American League playoffs, matched the Central Division champion Chicago White Sox against the Western Division champion Los Angeles Angels. The White Sox, by virtue of having the best record in the AL during the 2005 season, had the home field advantage. The White Sox won the series 4 games to 1 to become the American League champions, and faced the Houston Astros in the 2005 World Series; as a result of the 2005 All-Star Game played in Detroit, Michigan at Comerica Park on July 12, the White Sox had home field advantage in the World Series. The series was notable for the outstanding pitching and durability of Chicago's starting rotation, pitching four consecutive complete games; the 2/3 of an inning Neal Cotts pitched in the first game was the only work the White Sox bullpen saw the entire series.
The White Sox and Angels were victorious in the AL Division Series (ALDS), with the White Sox defeating the defending World Champion and wild card qualifier Boston Red Sox 3 games to 0, and the Angels defeating the Eastern Division champion New York Yankees 3 games to 2.
Series MVP: Paul Konerko, Chicago
|1||Los Angeles 3, Chicago 2||October 11, 2005|
|2||Los Angeles 1, Chicago 2||October 12, 2005|
|3||Chicago 5, Los Angeles 2||October 14, 2005|
|4||Chicago 8, Los Angeles 2||October 15, 2005|
|5||Chicago 6, Los Angeles 3||October 16, 2005|
In the series opener, the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim won 3-2 in their third game in as many nights and as many cities. The Angels took the lead in the second inning on a Garret Anderson home run. The Angels added two more runs in the third, and then José Contreras allowed no more runs, going 8 1/3 innings. The White Sox tried to chip away at the lead, but only managed to score two runs on seven hits. The Angel relievers were able to hold the Sox scoreless. It was the first time in six tries that the Angels won a game 1 under Mike Scioscia, despite the fact that they won the World Series in 2002.
Behind a complete game from Mark Buehrle and a now infamous strikeout in the bottom of the ninth, the White Sox evened the series at a game a piece. The Sox took advantage of an Angels error and drew first blood in the first inning. The game remained 1-0 until an Angels HR in the 5th tied it 1-1. Then with the score still tied in the 9th and with two outs Sox catcher AJ Pierzynski swung on and missed at strike three. The home plate umpire however ruled that Angels catcher Josh Paul had dropped the ball but Paul rolled it back to the mound, allowing Pierzynski to run to first safely. Pablo Ozuna went in to run for Pierzynski. He stole second uncontested, putting him in the right place when Joe Crede hit the walk-off double.
HRs: LAA – Robb Quinlan (1)
Paul Konerko's three-run homer in the first inning provided a Chicago lead that the Angels could never overcome, despite a two-run home run by Orlando Cabrera in the sixth, as the White Sox take the series lead, 2 games to 1, with Jon Garland pitching a complete game.
Freddy Garcia pitched the White Sox' third straight complete game and Paul Konerko hit his second consecutive first inning home run to give the South Siders the lead. A.J. Pierzynski also homered in the fourth inning, helping put the White Sox one win from their first World Series visit since 1959. The controversy continued in this game. Konerko's three run first inning blast came after a disputed check swing on a 2-2 pitch. Later in the game, with the White Sox leading 3-1, the Angels put men on first and third for Steve Finley, who hit a ground ball to second for an inning ending double play. He argued that White Sox catcher A. J. Pierzynski had interfered with his swing. In the later innings, with the White Sox leading 5-1, Scott Podsednik stole second and later scored.
Joe Crede led the way with his home run, and José Contreras pitched the fourth consecutive complete game by a White Sox Hurler, Chicago wins the ALCS and their first American League pennant since 1959. This also marked the first time in 77 years that a team threw four straight complete game victories in the playoffs, and the first time that it was done by four different pitchers since the Chicago Cubs did it in the 1907 World Series.
HRs: ChW – Joe Crede (2)
Quote of the SeriesEdit
- "Escobar, another strikeout..Pierzynski is going down to first. The Angels are already off the field. The home plate umpire never made a call and safe is Pierzynski."-Joe Buck calling the strange play in the 9th inning of Game 2
- "And that's into the left field corner...this ball is off the wall. The White Sox have won, and this only begins what will be an argument by the Angels."-Joe Buck of Fox Sports calling Joe Crede's game-winning hit after A.J.Pierzynski's controversial strike out.
Most Valuable Player (MVP)Edit
Paul Konerko of the Chicago White Sox was named the ALCS MVP following Game 5. He finished the series batting .286, with two home runs and seven RBIs. His two home runs came in the first innings of Games 3 and 4; he is only the third player in major league history to hit home runs in the first inning of consecutive playoff games, the other two having been Dan Ford during the 1979 ALCS and Carlos Beltrán during the 2004 NLCS .
|2005 Major League Baseball Playoffs|
|2005 World Series|
|American League Championship Series|
American League Division Series
|National League Championship Series|
National League Division Series
|American League Championship Series|