Chicago Cubs: Crosstown Classic is set to be reborn in 2020
With the Chicago Cubs and Sox finally both ready to contend, the crosstown classic is set to return to its old form and become one of baseball’s best rivalries again
The last time the Chicago Cubs and Chicago White Sox both had a winning season was 2008. Since then, the competition has lost a lot of its luster as the Sox have managed to put together just two winning seasons, while the Cubs shifted their focus to winning championships once they entered the win-now mode.
The Sox are coming off one of baseball’s best off-season’s as we enter 2020, and we believe this will help light a fire and reignite a rivalry that not only baseball needs but the city of Chicago as well.
The Sox did not take this off-season lightly. They believe their young stars are ready to take a step up, and they wanted to surround that with a veteran talent to contend this season. In a slew of moves, the Sox have brought in the following:
-Catcher Yasmani Grandal (four years $73 million)
-Right fielder Nomar Mazara (acquired via trade with the Rangers)
-Starting pitcher Gio Gonzalez (two years $5 million)
-Starting pitcher Dallas Keuchel (three years $55.5 million)
-DH/First baseman Edwin Encarnacion (one year $12 million)
-Reliever Steve Cishek (one year $6 million)
If that’s not filling out a roster, then I don’t know what is, as the Sox sent a message to the rest of the league that they are going all in. Bad news for the AL Central, but great news for a rivalry that finally has some teeth to it again.
More from Cubbies Crib
- Cubs should keep close eye on non-tender candidate Cody Bellinger
- Cubs starting pitching has been thriving on the North Side
- Make no mistake: the Cubs are very much about power hitters
- Cubs are giving pitcher Javier Assad a deserved shot
- Cubs: It’s time to start thinking about potential September call-ups
Three of these names joining the Sox will have some personal meaning to the Cubs and their fans. Starting with Cishek, the former Cubs reliever will be challenging to watch in black and white after being a staple in the bullpen on the north side the past two seasons.
The next name is Gonzalez; a name Cubs fans hate to hear. He isn’t this big-time ace, but for some reason, he always seems to have the Cubs number. In 15 career starts against the Cubs, his numbers consist of a 4-3 record, 2.62 ERA, .189 opponent batting average and .275 on-base percentage.
Cubs fans were looking forward to having him leave Milwaukee, where most of his dominance occurred, but this team may still have to deal with him as part of the Crosstown Classic.
The last name is Keuchel, the former Houston Astro. In 2017, the lefty was asked about his team having a World Series hangover.
He responded: “We’re not the Cubs, I firmly believe we have better players.” An uncalled jab at the Cubs, and I’m sure this will add some fuel to the fire if he takes the hill during the rivalry.
These three names will most certainly help add some more spice to this rivalry and is a big reason why I think the days of a meaningless crosstown classic are gone.
The Sox believe they have what it takes to become Chicago’s best team and it will be up to the Cubs to show they are still the team to beat. For the first time in a long time, both sides are ready to make playoff pushes, and the rivalry is set to return to form as a result.