Jeff Samardzija pitched a complete game two-hitter, Julio Borbon homered and Anthony Rizzo tripled in two runs to spark a nine-hit attack, and the Cubs dominated the White Sox in a 7-0 victory at U.S. Cellular Field on Monday night.
The Sox had no answer for Samardzija (3-6) and managed only Conor Gillaspie's leadoff single in the third and Alexei Ramirez's single with two out in the ninth. Gillaspie was immediately wiped out on a double play grounder by Jeff Keppinger.
"He was on tonight. It didn't matter who we had on the mound, honestly,'' Gillaspie said. "He threw every single pitch for a strike, it seemed like. His fastball moves all over the place.
"You get to two strikes, you're in trouble with a guy like that. He got ahead a lot. He was on tonight. You tip your cap sometimes."
The shutout was the first for the Cubs since Randy Wells' complete game victory since Randy Wells against the Giants on Aug. 29, 2011 in San Francisco. It was the first interleague shutout for the Cubs. Samardzija retired 12 straight Sox from the fifth into the ninth inning.
The Sox, who had been playing improved defense after a terrible first six weeks, reverted to some of their bad form already in the first inning, when shortstop Ramirez was late covering second base on Starlin Castro's steal in the first inning. With two outs, Alfonso Soriano singled in Castro for the game's first run.
In the Cubs seventh, Ryan Sweeney reached first leading off the inning when he struck out on Nate Jones' wild pitch that bounced off the back wall. Catcher Tyler Flowers had time to throw out Sweeney, who didn't immediately run, but Flowers' throw bounced past first baseman Paul Konerko for an error on the catcher.
"You can't win if you play like that,'' Sox manager Robin Ventura said. "I don't know if it was flat. If Samardzija made us flat or we were just flat. It was definitely not what we've been playing like.''
After Borbon and Castro singled, Rizzo flied deep to center, where Alejandro De Aza went up with his glove but couldn't make the catch. Rizzo hesitated around first, thinking the ball would be caught, but hustled into third with a triple.
Sox starter Jose Quintana (3-2) allowed four runs in six innings. All of the Cubs hits came from their top four hitters in the lineup.
"We were facing a good pitcher and I felt like I made two big mistakes,'' Quintana said. "I'm upset about making those mistakes. When you're facing a good pitcher like that they're even bigger mistakes.''
The loss dropped the White Sox below .500 after they had swept the Miami Marlins over the weekend.
The Cubs and Sox play Tuesday night at U.S. Cellular Field before finishing their crosstown set with two games at Wrigley Field on Wednesday and Thursday afternoon.