As a frontline player in his prime switching sides in a Cubs-White Sox trade, new Cubs starter Jose Quintana is a rarity. Trades between the teams have been dominated by bench players and prospects, with the occasional veteran at the end of the line.
Only five players in Cubs-Sox trade history have contributed more than 10 wins above replacement in their post-swap careers. Here’s a look at them:
SAMMY SOSA (Sox to Cubs; total bWAR, 58.4; post-trade, 57.7): As a youngster with the Rangers and Sox in 1989-91, Sosa hit .228 with a .650 OPS, 29 home runs and 116 RBI.
The Sox dealt him to the Cubs at age 23. From 1992 to 2004, his career took off to .284, .928, a Cubs-record 545 homers and 1,414 RBI before two seasons with the Orioles and Rangers brought his homer total to 609.
Sosa has the second-highest career WAR among players in Cubs-Sox trades, trailing Ron Santo’s 70.4. But while Santo was -1.6 after leaving the Cubs, Sosa had his best years post-Sox.
SCOTT FLETCHER (Cubs to Sox; total bWAR, 32.0; post-trade, 31.8): After brief stints with the Cubs in 1981-82, Fletcher was traded to the Sox at age 24. He totaled 10.5 bWAR in Sox stints in 1983-85 and 1989-91.
Fletcher wasn’t a big bat, with a career .262 batting average, .674 OPS and 34 homers. His value was as an exceptional shortstop and second baseman. His 17.9 defensive WAR ranks 39th all-time among those who played 90 percent or more of their games at second, short or a combination of the two.
JON GARLAND (Cubs to Sox; 22.2 bWAR, all post-trade): Garland was an 18-year-old minor-leaguer when he was dealt to the Sox in 1998.
After the Sox called him up in 2000, he went 92-81 — including 18 victories each in 2005 and 2006 — with a 4.41 ERA and an 18.3 bWAR in eight seasons on the South Side. After leaving the Sox, he went 44-44 for four other teams.
STEVE STONE (Sox to Cubs; total bWAR, 18.9; post-trade, 14.6): A 107-game winner overall, Stone was 17-28 with a 3.84 ERA and a 4.3 bWAR before joining the Cubs for his age-26 season. In three seasons with the Cubs, he was 23-20 with a 4.04 ERA and a 6.2 bWAR, including 12-8 with a 3.95 ERA and a 3.5 bWAR in 1975.
His best season was the 4.0 bWAR in his Cy Young season of 1980, when he went 25-7 with a 3.23 ERA for the Orioles.
STEVE RENKO (Cubs to Sox; total bWAR, 21.0; post-trade, 10.1): Renko is an outlier on this list. He had gone 68-82 with the Expos before joining the Cubs. After going 10-13 with a 4.02 ERA in 1976 and part of 1977, he was dealt by the Cubs to the Sox, where he went 5-0 with a 3.54 ERA in eight games.
That gave him bWARs of 2.6 with the Cubs and 1.3 with the Sox. After that, he pitched for four teams, notching bWARs ranging from 0.9 to 2.3 and boosting his victory total to 134.
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