Starting Monday and going through Thursday, the Cubs and White Sox play each other in an interleague battle. There have been some intense games played between the city rivals, both on the field and in the stands. The intensity may have been cut down a bit by having the series played earlier than usual and cutting two games, but players on both sides acknowledge that these games are not your run-of-the-mill regular season games.
Paul Konerko has possibly the best perspective on the rivalry. He has played for the White Sox for 16 years and has seen the series evolve.
“When I first got here [in 1999], the focus was- I think some of our fans might have even felt that winning the season series against the Cubs almost is more important than making the playoffs, which is crazy. That was kind of the sentiment: If you beat them, then we don’t care about the rest.
“Just make sure you beat the Cubs. But I think as both teams made the playoffs a couple of times or we won the World Series, we had our sights set on bigger things, and so did they.”
There have been some classic moments from the series. In 2000, Sammy Sosa hit a towering home run off Keith Foulke after striking out four times earlier. It only delayed the inevitable, as the Sox won in 14 innings.
The next season, Carlos Lee did one better, hitting a walk-off grand slam in the ninth to give the Sox a 7-3 win.
In 2006, the most intense game happened. Michael Barrett punched AJ Pierzynski after he felt Pierzynski was showboating when he slapped home plate when he scored.
In 2010, perhaps the best moment in the series took place. The Cubs and Sox were to play just hours after the Blackhawks held their Stanley Cup victory parade. The three teams all met at the mound in Wrigley and took a picture together with the Cup.
The series will be played at Wrigley Field on Monday and Tuesday, before moving down south to US Cellular Field on Wednesday and Thursday. Hopefully, there will be more classic moments for the fans to experience.