Quin­tana crosses town

Cubs ac­quire starter from White Sox in block­buster

The Guardian (Charlottetown) - - SPORTS - BY AN­DREW SELIGMAN

The Chicago Cubs found the pitch­ing help they were look­ing for just a few miles from Wrigley Field. They hope it will give the scuf­fling team the kick it needs.

The de­fend­ing World Series cham­pi­ons ac­quired left­handed ace Jose Quin­tana from the White Sox on Thurs­day in a ma­jor trade be­tween crosstown ri­vals that could shake up the NL Cen­tral race.

By land­ing the 2016 all-star, the Cubs made it clear they’re not giv­ing up on a dif­fi­cult sea­son after ar­riv­ing at the break two games un­der .500. They also added a pitcher who fig­ures to be a key piece in the ro­ta­tion for at least the next few years.

“We had a bad first half,” Cubs pres­i­dent of base­ball op­er­a­tions Theo Ep­stein said. “We did. We own that. We know we can do bet­ter.”

The Cubs trail Mil­wau­kee by 5 1/2 games in the di­vi­sion at 43-45 after end­ing a 108-year cham­pi­onship drought last fall. They be­lieve they are set up to con­tend for years to come with stars such as Kris Bryant and An­thony Rizzo.

By trad­ing for Quin­tana, they brought in an elite starter who is un­der club con­trol through 2020.

They had to give up two top prospects in out­fielder Eloy Jimenez and right-handed pitcher Dy­lan Cease along with mi­nor league in­field­ers Matt Rose and Bryant Flete.

Quin­tana has pitched bet­ter lately after a slow start and is 4-8 with a 4.49 ERA in 18 starts this sea­son.

He won a ca­reer-high 13 games last sea­son with a per­sonal-best 3.20 ERA while mak­ing his first all-star team and is 50-54 with a 3.51 ERA since de­but­ing with the White Sox in 2012.

White Sox gen­eral man­ager Rick Hahn said let­ting him go was a dif­fi­cult choice for the re­build­ing team.

“He’s a true pro­fes­sional who had to deal with ev­ery­thing from poor run sup­port to the bullpen oc­ca­sion­ally let­ting him down, the de­fence let­ting him down,” Hahn said.

AP PHOTO

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