Rookie slugger Eloy Jimenez is bound to gather numerous mementos through the span of what guarantees to be a beneficial profession.
Be that as it may, a bat he broke to shatter the hearts of Cubs fans will be among his most treasured keepsakes.
Jimenez, a top Cubs prospect who was managed as the focal point of a five-player trade for left-hander Jose Quintana, smacked a two-run, tiebreaking home run off veteran reliever Pedro Strop to give the White Sox a 3-1 triumph before 41,192 dazed fans at Wrigley Field.
The home run by Jimenez, his 12th in 47 games, was his seventh that put the Sox ahead this season. It likewise was his first proceed homer in the ninth and will be a minute for the Sox franchise and fans to treasure as they try to copy the remaking way the Cubs used to win a 2016 World Series title.
Whenever Jimenez, 22, inquired as to whether his bat would be a lifetime keepsake, he answered with a smile, “of course.”
This kind of triumph for the Sox (35-36), who have won 12 of their previous 19 games, is another building block as they move nearer to diverting the corner from pretender to contender in the American League Central.
For the Cubs (39-33), this was a doubly baffling misfortune as they fell for the 6th time in eight games. They didn’t muster any offense after Kyle Schwarber hit a leadoff home run off Ivan Nova, and Jimenez’s homer approved feelings of dread among their fans that the Quintana trade would haunt them.
“He’s a nice player; he’s going to be very good,” said Cubs manager Joe Maddon, who compared Jimenez in spring training in 2017 to Hall of Fame hitter Edgar Martinez. “I heard that was a broken bat, and it goes that far.
“He’s good, but we’ve got to score more than one run. That’s the tale of the tape tonight. They got us late. But we have to do a better job offensively.”
The Cubs scored three runs or less for the fifth back to back game and for the 6th time in seven games.
Simultaneously, they squandered another sterling execution from left-hander Cole Hamels, who struck out Nova in the third to become the 38th pitcher and 10th left-hander in major-league history to strike out in any event 2,500 players.
“We’re going to turn the page and come in (Wednesday night) and try to put up 10 runs against one of the best pitchers in the game,” said Hamels, referring to Sox 10-game winner Lucas Giolito.
“We’re never giving up, never down and out.”
Hamels said a large number of his hostile partners were taking a gander at video after Nova permitted just three hits after the home run to Schwarber in five or more innings. Be that as it may, the Sox’s warm up area made it workable for Jimenez’s heroics.
“Jimenez has done some big things for us in a short period of time,” Sox manager Rick Renteria said. “… He’s so young and just scratching the surface.”
Renteria, who dealt with the Cubs in 2014 preceding he was supplanted by Maddon at the turn of the Cubs’ revamping program, made three pitching moves that satisfied.
Left-hander Aaron Bummer hit out Victor Caratini with runners at first and third to end the 6th.
Fellow left-hander Jace Fry struck out Schwarber to begin the eighth. Evan Marshall, who earned his third win as many outings, wasn’t shaken after a fly ball fell between Jimenez, Leury Garcia and Tim Anderson in shallow left-center.
Marshall induced Anthony Rizzo to ground into a double play for which Bryant took the blame.
“I probably should have been on second base,” Bryant said. “That’s my fault. It’s not going to happen again.”
Be that as it may, for the second time in as many games, the Cubs lost in the rival’s last at-bat as a result of an absence of offense that left the relievers with no margin for error.
What’s more, Jimenez’s homer off Strop happened around five hours after Craig Kimbrel pitched a perfect inning his first game for Triple-An Iowa with the probability of joining the Cubs toward the finish of June.
“If we’re not winning right now, it’s just one small piece,” Hamels said. “I think we all want to be a large piece.”
“I don’t think we all of a sudden turn to him and be hoping he’ll save us at the end of the day.”