Since interleague play started in 1997, the Cubs and White Sox have played 84 times. Regardless of your stance on interleague play, the Chicago series is an interleague staple and one of the reasons that it’s still around, along with Yankees-Mets and Dodgers-Angels. Even when both teams are garbage, which is almost every year, it’s a fun six games to watch. Both ballparks sell out, the players buy in, and friends make stupid bets. It’s fun.
As someone important probably said at some point in history, anything good will inevitably get ruined by an idiot. As if hemorrhaging a mind-boggling amount of oil into the Gulf of Mexico wasn’t a great enough fuck-job, the fine folks at BP decided in 2010 that the Cubs and White Sox would compete for a shitty generic-looking trophy.
First, I have a gripe with the design of the thing. I think I’ve seen the same trophy before–yeah, I’m pretty sure they lifted this design from the guy who designed the “World’s Greatest Dad” trophy. When they abolish the trophy at least they’ll have ten or so dollars of scrap silver, so I guess that’s a plus.
The BP sponsorship is also problematic. There’s no ignoring the elephant in the room. BP spilled an insane amount of oil into the Gulf and have largely failed to make amends. When the Cup was first presented at Wrigley Field, it drew heavy boos. I can only imagine the reaction it would’ve received if it was shown off at a ballpark in Alabama or Louisiana. BP isn’t that stupid. Right?
Last year, realizing that their trophy sucked and everyone hated it, BP threw in a little contest to save face. The grand prize was $10,000 in BP gift cards, which seems alright, until you read the fine print. To qualify, participants needed to buy eight gallons of a BP product called “Invigorate”. I don’t feel like taking the time to look this up, but judging by the name “Invigorate”, I’m 90% sure that this stuff is designed to make your dick hard. I’ve gotta hand it to you, BP. Well played. Invigorate is the perfect product name to reflect the intensity of a three-hour-long-chemically-induced erection. Look out, Cialis.
The White Sox have won the thing in both ’10 and ’11, and judging by the 2012 Cubs’ futility, they should be considered favorites again. Stupid trophy aside, this weekend at Wrigley and June 18-20 at U.S. Cellular Field will likely be the most exciting six days of baseball for a city that’s been asking “When do the Bears start?” since Derrick Rose tore his ACL. Still, I’ll be among those cringing when the BP Crosstown Cup is hoisted. The sooner that thing dies in a fire, the better.
Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to buy some Invigorate.
Follow Sean on Twitter: @sg44444