View Full Version : Sox-Cubs trivia

06-20-2008, 01:44 PM
OK, I must admit I always feel a certain sense of excitement come "Crosstown Series" time. I don’t know why. I love baseball, the Sox, and baseball history, and both teams are a huge part of the city and baseball history. Of course, I could also be cubsessed. After all, the cool thing now is to be oh-so-bored with interleague play and to wish we could play more games against the Texas Rangers and Kansas City Royals. Granted, games against the likes of the Pittsburgh Pirates and Cincinnati Reds don’t have the appeal that they once did, but games with the Cubs always seem to be fun, exciting and suspenseful. They bring out the very best and worst in everyone.

So now, in the spirit of the hype, I offer more trivia questions. The Trib offered some, big deal. They only focused on IL play. I offer questions that cover the whole scope of the White Sox-Cubs “rivalry,” including the old City Series, Boys Benefit Games, Windy City Classics, et al. These are random questions, in no particular order, put together simply to indulge my passions for history, trivia and baseball; and for the enjoyment of all who care to read.

The White Sox and Cubs played their first “City Series” in 1903. What was the unusual result of this first showdown?The two teams tied a best-of-15(!!!) series at 7-7. The teams agreed to a specific set of dates for the games. One date was rained out, and when the Sox won Game 14 to tie the series, the Colts (as they were called then) refused to play a winner-take-all Game 15. The media slammed them for it (Jay and Greg weren’t born yet, remember) and the Colts lost many fans over it.

That first series in 1903 may have set off a chain of events that would result in the Cubs winning their only two World Series titles in 1907-08. What happened?Colt pitcher Jack Taylor, an early 20th century star, easily handled the Sox in game 1, but was eminently hittable after that. Rumors abounded that Taylor told a group of fans “why should I get $100 for winning (Colt owner Hart’s bonus) when I could get $500 for losing?” an ominous implication of shady goings-on. (The Black Jack Scandal?) Owner Hart shipped Taylor to the Cardinals for pitcher Mordecai “Three-Finger” Brown, who would become the Cub ace of the decade and be a main cog in their winning teams of 07-08.

The Taylor saga didn’t end there. In 1904, Colt owner Hart refused Comiskey’s postseason challenge for a rematch and went public with his accusations against Taylor. The enraged pitcher threatened to sue Hart for slander. The two reached a settlement over the matter.

Let’s shift gears to current Interleague play. What is the White Sox’ record against the Cubs since 1997?They are 30-30; 16-14 at USCF, 14-16 at Wrigley Field. The score after 60 games is 291-291. Talk about perfect balance. What are we all going to fight about now?

What much-revered White Sox pitcher started and lost the first IL game against the Cubs on June 16, 1997?That would be Sox fan all-time favorite “Home Run” Jaime Navarro, who gave up 7 runs in an 8-3 loss. But don’t blame him. How was he supposed to win if his team offered him no run support?

What is the White Sox’ combined record against the Cubs in the City Series, World Series, Boys Benefit Games, Windy City Classics and Interleague play?In all of these, the Sox’ record is 143-105-5. Aside from being tied in IL play, they went 91-60-3 in the City Series and 8-0-2 in the Windy City Classic. The 1906 World Series was won 4 games to 2. The Boys Benefit Game is the only “series” where the Cubs have a winning edge, going 13-10.

So let’s shift back to the City Series. In 1912, the White Sox did something no other baseball team managed to do for 101 years. In fact, only two other teams (both in hockey) accomplished this feat during that span. What is it?The Sox and Cubs started their best-of-seven hostilities with two ties. The Cubs won the next three games and were poised for a sweep before Ed Walsh topped them in Game 6. The next two games saw the Sox rally from 8th and 9th inning deficits to force a deciding Game 9 where they administered a 16-0 thrashing, thus becoming the only baseball team in the 20th century to overcome a 3-0 deficit in a best-of-seven series and win. The next time it happened in baseball was 2004, when the Boston Red Sox did it and it counted. A pity the 1912 showdown wasn’t a World Series.

Let’s stay on the subject of firsts. In the 1964 Boys Benefit Game at Comiskey Park, the Sox did something that they had never done in a league game, and would not do in one for another 19 years. What is it?In the sixth inning, Ron Hansen, Tommy McCraw and Gerry McNertney hit three consecutive home runs off of pitcher Dick Scott, who had been called up from the minors for the game. The Sox would not do the back-to-back-to-back thing in an official game until September 9, 1983.

What recent Hall of Fame inductee made his first appearance in the 1971 Boys Benefit game at Wrigley Field, one year before his official major league debut?That was Rich “Goose” Gossage, who was a nervous 19 year old at the time. He recalled that his hat was three sizes too big, and kept falling in front of his eyes. One of the first batters Gossage faced was fellow future HOFer Ernie Banks, and he nearly took Banks’ head off with his first pitch. Ernie, a likable sort, was able to laugh it off.

Which well-remembered Sox slugger bopped the “Homer in a Basket” during the 1999 IL showdown at Wrigley?That was gone but never-forgotten shortstop Mike Caruso, whose mighty blast broke a 4-4 8th inning tie and enabled the Sox to finish off a stunning sweep of the Cubs, who had swept the Sox at Wrigley the year before. Caruso’s tape-measure blast, which would have been a routine out anywhere but Wrigley, was one of 17 extra base hits he crushed that year.

Caruso came to Chi as part of the famous “White Flag” trade of 1997. He was unable to live up to the lofty expectations of the team or fans, batting .306 and .250 before departing the South Side. The “Homer in the Basket” was his shining moment with the team, and one that Sox fans will remember fondly.

OK, I’m out of gas. Last question, at least for now. I may edit more in later. Who made the final out of the 1906 World Series?That honor goes to Cubs outfielder Frank “Wildfire” Schulte. He stepped up against Doc White with two outs in the top of the 9th and the bases loaded with Cubbies. Schulte hit a grounder to Sox 1st baseman Jiggs Donahue, who touched first unassisted to finish off a 8-3 Sox victory. The White Sox, owners of a 93-58 record, .228 team batting average and seven team home runs, wiped out the Cubs, owners of the best single season record in baseball history (116-36) 4 games to 2.

As I said, I may edit more questions in later. Right now I’m tired.

06-20-2008, 03:08 PM
Little piece of trivia in the 1964 game. It was at Comiskey as was all the boys benefit games but they let the Cubs be the home team. Sox won anyway 11-1. Also it was the largest crowd Ive ever seen at Comiskey, they oversold the park and had people sitting in the aisles and standing on the warning track from centerfield to the rightfield foul pole.

06-20-2008, 10:52 PM
The 1906 World Series was won 4 games to 2.

Apparently who won really is trivia, at least to the "professionals" at ESPeniS.

SportsCenter opened tonight with the Sox-Cubs game and in the intro the idiot said that the only time the two teams met in the World Series, the Cubs won.

Maybe ESPN has asked MLB to change the record books as they like this version of the story better.

06-21-2008, 07:59 AM
Apparently who won really is trivia, at least to the "professionals" at ESPeniS.

SportsCenter opened tonight with the Sox-Cubs game and in the intro the idiot said that the only time the two teams met in the World Series, the Cubs won.

Maybe ESPN has asked MLB to change the record books as they like this version of the story better.

Interesting. Perhaps they are borrowing a page from Goerge Orwell. In 1984,
the main character's profession was rewriting newspaper articles according
to the dictates of the government. Perhaps ESPN is now telling staff to
rewrite sports history?