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For some Sox fans, ‘2005 vibes’ as team starts playoff run

After their team reached the postseason for a second consecutive year for the first time in franchise history, some Sox fans say being the only Chicago team with a shot at the World Series is enough to make them smile this year.

Sox fans Anthony Rodriguez, left, and Hector Roldan, right, pose for a picture in the Bridgeport neighborhood before the first game of the American League Division Series between the Chicago White Sox and Houston Astros, Thursday afternoon, October 7, 2021. | Pat Nabong/Sun-Times
Sox fans Anthony Rodriguez, left, and Hector Roldan, right, say the Sox’s playoff spot, along with the Cubs’ postseason absence, gives the team bragging rights over their crosstown rival.
Pat Nabong/Sun-Times, Pat Nabong/Sun-Times

White Sox fan Anthony Rodriguez puffed on a cigar Thursday outside Turtles Bar & Grill in Bridgeport as his team kicked off what fans hope is a long playoff-run after its first division title since 2008.

As the Sox played the first game of the best-of-five series against the Houston Astros, Rodriguez said he had cautious optimism.

The Houston matchup gives him a feeling of déjà vu that the Sox are going to win it all again, just as they did 16 years ago when the Sox beat the Astros in the World Series.

“I’ve got 2005 vibes flowing through me,” Rodriguez said. “It’s been a long time already, but I remember that feeling, and it’s Houston again. It’s who we beat last time. We gotta pick up right where we left off.”

South Side native Barry Temple, left, said being a Sox fan might be more about hating the Cubs than rooting for the black and white. White Sox fans Barry Temple, left, and Sean McQuillen, right, talk at Turtle’s Bar and Grill in the Bridgeport neighborhood before the first game of the American League Division Series between the Chicago White Sox and Houston Astros, Thursday afternoon, October 7, 2021. | Pat Nabong/Sun-Times
South Side native Barry Temple, left, said being a Sox fan might be more about hating the Cubs than rooting for the black and white.
Pat Nabong/Sun-Times

South Side native Anthony Ciaravino, who grew up just a few blocks away from the Sox Stadium, had “butterflies” in his stomach all day.

Although hearing the shouts of rowdy White Sox fans were commonplace when he was growing up, this year seems different. For one, the crowds at Guaranteed Rate Field are bigger than he can remember.

And the team is not in the shadow of the its North Side counterpart, the Cubs, who didn’t make the postseason.

“The White Sox always feel like we’re the red-headed stepchild in this city,” Ciaravino said. “It’s nice to finally get some attention.”

White Sox fan Anthony Ciaravino says the sounds of stadium fireworks are like second nature to him. This year, he said he’s hopeful the Sox will win it all. White Sox fan Anthony Ciaravino, in black, claps while watching the first game of the American League Division Series between the Chicago White Sox and Houston Astros at Turtle’s Bar and Grill in the Bridgeport neighborhood, Thursday afternoon, October 7, 2021.
White Sox fan Anthony Ciaravino says the sounds of stadium fireworks are like second nature to him. This year he’s hopeful the Sox will win it all, he said.
Pat Nabong/Sun-Times

Rodriguez said the South Side fanbase has a special sense of pride.

“It’s kind of like bragging rights for the time being,” said Rodriguez. “Even the Cubs fans now, look at where they’re going, they’re rebuilding and this is our time now.”

Although fans didn’t get the outcome they hoped Thursday, they still took pride in the South Siders as it made the postseason for the second season in a row, the first time in team history.

“This season they started picking it up, and playoffs are a different ballgame. I’m liking the bats and definitely the pitching is good, too,” said Dan Archer, who was at Cork and Kerry at the Park, also in Bridgeport. He wasn’t worried the team had a subpar record later in the season. “It’s the playoffs, seeing firsthand like in 2005, they didn’t play for the second half either and they ended up winning the whole thing.”

White Sox fans Anthony Scarlata, left, Mike Wagner, center, and Jim Frobes, right, watch the first game of the American League Division Series between the Chicago White Sox and Houston Astros at Turtle’s Bar and Grill in the Bridgeport neighborhood on Thursday afternoon, Oct. 7, 2021.
Pat Nabong/Sun-Times

And even if they don’t pull it out, fans have hopes for the future.

“They’ve got a lot of good prospects out there, and they’re coming into the room right now with [Luis] Robert and [Danny] Mendick,” Archer said. “They’re only going to get better.”