The Chicago White Sox and Chicago Cubs played the first installment of the 2020 Crosstown Classic on Friday night at Wrigley Field, and it wasn't much of a contest. The visiting South Siders racked up six home runs -- two by Jose Abreu and four off Cubs starter Jon Lester, who's allowed 13 runs over his past two starts. At the same time, Sox lefty Dallas Keuchel allowed only one run in eight innings of work. He now boasts a 2.65 ERA for the year. The Sox prevailed in the series opener by a score of 10-1 (box score).
That's his ninth home run of the season and his 40th career home run in 147 games. The 23-year-old Jimenez is of course a former Cubs prospect, but he was dealt to the White Sox as part of the July 2017 trade that sent Jose Quintana to the North Side.
Speaking of Sox power, they've now hit 22 home runs in their past 45 innings. Last season, the White Sox ranked 13th in the AL in home runs, but thanks in part to Friday night's outburst they've now passed the Yankees for the current AL lead in homers.
The win marked the White Sox's sixth straight victory. They're now 16-11 overall with a plus-28 run differential and five games over .500 for the first time since the first half of the 2016 season. That's been the hope for 2020, as the Sox spent the offseason adding veteran free agents to the impressive young core that includes Jimenez and rookie phenom Luis Robert, who also homered on Friday. The Sox are in third place in the AL Central but just one game behind the first-place Twins.
In spite of the ritual beating they suffered at home on Friday, the Cubs maintain a four-game lead in the NL Central.