Any reasonable Chicago sports fan with a grasp on the history between the baseball teams in this town would be within their right mind to think the above opinion way back on July 9th.
It’d even make sense to carry that opinion as the day broke on today, the 13th, which figured to be another sleepy day in the midst of the sleepiest week in the sporting calendar, the week when we actually have to act like we care about the ESPYs because no one is playing any games that matter.
But give it to the Chicago Cubs and the Chicago White Sox — they snatched the headlines for themselves with a trade involving one of the perceived jewels of this July’s MLB trading period, Sox ace pitcher Jose Quintana. Adding sweet icing on this news cake was the fact that they traded him within the city limits, to the hated cross-town rival, to the team still glowing off their long-awaited championship win from last fall.
The rich get richer, right? Well, not necessarily. More like the smart get smarter.
The full machinations of this deal have yet to be revealed — we don’t know how easy or hard it was for the Cubs and Sox, two teams who are perceived to always be at odds, to approach each other about this deal and to craft it the way it was brought to us, the public, who almost unified in exclaiming that it was a beaut for both sides of town.
Regarding said haul:
The numbers of those players, btw (as stated on whitesox.com): the already in-the-fold infielder Yoán Moncada (1), right-hander Michael Kopech (11), outfielder Luis Robert (23), right-handers Lucas Giolito (28), Reynaldo López (36) and Carson Fulmer (59) and catcher Zack Collins (68) and now there’s Jimenez (8) and Cease (63) along with Cubs prospects Matt Rose (first base) and infielder Bryant Flete.
As stated by White Sox general manager Rick Hahn in an official statement: “All four players add talent and depth to our organization, which has been one of our very public goals over the past nine months, and their ages and development arc match nicely with some of the other young talent we have been fortunate to add in recent trades, the draft and international signings.”
No MLB farm system has been as restocked over the past year as the White Sox’s under the leadership of Hahn. Some may say that he even took advantage of the previous darlings of organizational rebuilding in the Cubs, but the Cubs can consider themselves no less than a title contender mere months after winning the World Series.
A complete resolve to falling off can not be accepted on the North Side, maybe after another disappointing loss in the NLCS or even in the Series, but not after showing Chicago again what it means to go all the way and to believe — Quintana doesn’t put the club over the top, more moves may need to be made before the calendar turns to August, but he does slide perfectly into the No. 2 spot in the Cubs’ rotation, he’s a potential all-star representative with constant offense backing him up and he’s as affordable a near-elite pitcher as there is in baseball, locked up for years to come for a fraction of the price of recent pitchers who’ve broken the bank in free agency.
With this trade in the near future we see something that clearly benefits both baseball clubs in Chicago. Now the Sun seems like its shining a little brighter on both 35th Street and Addison Street, ’tis a rare day when that happens.
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