Cubs Win Crosstown Series
By Benjy Lipsman in News on May 21, 2007 1:01PM
Any weekend that has the Cubs and White Sox playing each other is exciting, but since the Sox added A.J. Pierzynski to the mix he seems to have developed an uncanny ability to fan the flames even more. Remember his little run-in with Cubs catcher Michael Barrett last year?
A.J. didn't disappoint this year, either, causing fireworks at the beginning and end of the weekend, both on the field and off. On Friday, during Mike North's morning show on the Score 670, he expressed his disappointment in not being in the lineup for Friday's game, and at the possibility of platooning behind the plate with Toby Hall — who'd been activated from the DL in time for the series. His comments, heard by Sox skipper Ozzie Guillen while driving to Wrigley, caused Guillen to call in to North's show and go into a profanity-laced tirade before hanging up on North.
A.J.'s on-field fireworks came in the seventh inning of Sunday's game, where his grand slam helped the White Sox salvage the final game of the series, winning 10-6. It came as part of a seven-run inning that blew a 3-2 game wide open. Even with David Aardma's second-straight ugly outing, the Cubs couldn't pull off the sweep. Nick Masset started the game for the White Sox, going 5 2/3 innings and allowing just two runs. But what happened to Guillen deciding to pitch Contreras on Sunday?
Saturday's game had the Cubs thinking maybe they could pull off the sweep. They won 11-6 behind a Derrek Lee grand slam. Lee, who'd missed much of the previous week because of a neck injury, pinch hit and ensured the Cubs would win the three-game series, with one swing.
The Cubs also took Friday's opener 6-3, turning a late 3-1 deficit into a win after an Angel Pagan triple scored two, a Toby Hall passed ball allowed Pagan to score, and a throwing error by Hall in the eighth allowed two more runs to score — maybe Pierzynski was right to be pissed about sitting on Friday!
Round Two of the series takes place at U.S. Cellular June 22-24. What will that series have in store for Chicago baseball fans? Chicagoist will be happy just to be in town next time; we had to try and follow this series long distance from a friend's wedding in Nashville. It's just not the same when the only Cubs-Sox banter all weekend is on the Midway parking shuttle.
Photos by AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh.