Dansby Swanson’s first taste of Crosstown Classic is sweet as Cubs win 4th straight

Swanson notched his first multihomer game with the Cubs in support of a strong start by Kyle Hendricks.

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The Cubs’ Dansby Swanson homers off White Sox starter Michael Kopech on Tuesday at Guaranteed Rate Field.

The Cubs’ Dansby Swanson homers off White Sox starter Michael Kopech on Tuesday at Guaranteed Rate Field.

Charles Rex Arbogast/AP

During the Cubs’ last pitching change, with the stands packed and pulsing with energy, shortstop Dansby Swanson turned to manager David Ross and asked whether the Crosstown Classic was always like that

It had been in all of Ross’ experiences.

‘‘It’s the city, right? When you get two fan bases in the city, it’s spectacular to come to,’’ Ross said after the Cubs’ 7-3 victory against the White Sox at Guaranteed Rate Field. ‘‘I told him even when we play them at our place, there’s a lot of Sox fans there, and it’s loud when they take the lead or do something well. I love that.’’

In the stands Tuesday, Cubs fans had more to cheer about than Sox fans. And the North Side’s heroes came from opposite sides of the rivalry spectrum. Swanson, who notched his first multihomer game with the Cubs, was experiencing it all for the first time. Right-hander Kyle Hendricks was a mainstay.

‘‘We love these series, for sure,’’ Hendricks said after holding the Sox to three runs in 6⅓ innings. ‘‘Doesn’t matter where both teams are at, the crowd always shows up.’’

Hendricks made his 12th career start in the Classic, the second-most by a Cubs pitcher against the Sox, trailing only Carlos Zambrano (13). He held the Sox hitless through four innings, finally gave up a hit and run in the fifth but bounced back with a perfect sixth.

It wasn’t until the seventh that Hendricks showed signs of weakness. He loaded the bases with the first three batters he faced, then right fielder Seiya Suzuki saved him from surrendering a grand slam.

Suzuki tracked Yoan Moncada’s fly back to the wall, leaped with his back against the padding and pulled the ball back over the yellow line. Only one run scored.

‘‘Unbelievable catch,’’ Hendricks said. ‘‘Changed the scope of that game right there. They could have been right back in it.’’

A blooper by the Sox’ Andrew Vaughn fell between Hendricks and first baseman Cody Bellinger to drive in another run and end Hendricks’ outing.

Hendricks had a comfortable lead to work with, thanks in large part to Swanson’s bat. The Cubs established a franchise first in the modern era, logging five stolen bases and four home runs — two of which were hit by Swanson.

In the second, Swanson took advantage of an error that put Suzuki on base, turned on a high fastball and drove it over the left-field fence to account for the first two runs. Christopher Morel then followed with a solo homer.

The next time Swanson stepped to the plate, in the fourth, Sox starter Michael Kopech stayed away from the inner third of the plate for the first two pitches. But Swanson worked ahead in the count and got another inside heater. He put that one into the stands, too.

The Cubs continued to tack on, with a sacrifice fly from Bellinger; a homer from Nico Hoerner, who also had two stolen bases; and an RBI single from Swanson.

‘‘It’s my first time playing here, and it’s my first time experiencing an [intracity] rivalry, which was just so neat, the fans from both sides,’’ Swanson said. ‘‘And everyone seems to be into it. Kind of felt like college, in a way.’’

To make the experience sweeter, the Cubs earned their fourth consecutive victory and sixth in their last seven games.

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