Series: Game 1 of 3

Chi Cubs leads 1-0 (as of 6/25)

Game 1: Friday, June 25
Chi Cubs7Final
Chi White Sox4
Game 2: Saturday, June 26
Chi Cubs3Final
Chi White Sox6
Game 3: Sunday, June 27
Chi Cubs4Final
Chi White Sox9

Cubs 7

(41-32, 21-17 away)

White Sox 4

(37-33, 22-15 home)

    4:05 PM ET, June 25, 2004

    U.S. Cellular Field, Chicago, Illinois 

    123456789 R H E
    CHC 000042001 7 8 0
    CWS 000100030 4 6 3

    W: M. Prior (2-1)

    L: J. Garland (5-5)

    S: L. Hawkins (10)

    Grudzielanek's first HR of year key

    CHICAGO (AP) -- After nine weeks on the disabled list, Mark Grudzielanek savors the chance to play in any game, especially the spiced-up atmosphere of Cubs-White Sox.

    Throw in a glaring sun, a tricky wind and a noisy crowd that turned fly balls into an adventure and Friday's interleague opener, won by the Cubs 7-4, had yet another twist.

    "It was a situation, too, where the fans -- there was some electricity going on out there -- you couldn't really hear each other to call each other off," said Grudzielanek, who hit a fifth-inning homer.

    "The wind was blowing like crazy and the sun definitely made it more difficult. You saw that on both sides. It was tough to communicate."

    Grudzielanek, wearing a boot on his sore Achilles' tendon after the game, picked a good time for his first homer and RBI of the season.

    A sellout crowd of 39,596 watched his three-run shot give the Cubs the lead and Mark Prior the victory at U.S. Cellular Field, where the Sox made three errors.

    "It was a football atmosphere, really," said the Cubs' Todd Hollandsworth, who got to be a DH in the AL park and had two hits, including an RBI triple.

    "The crowd was into every pitch. You wish you could do it every day."

    Trailing 6-1, the White Sox made a game of it when Paul Konerko hit a three-run homer off Kyle Farnsworth with two outs in the eighth.

    "For the most part today it was kind of a non-energy game, kind of ho-hum," Konerko said.

    "It got a little interesting at the end, just a little bit too late. They just kind of outplayed us in every aspect. They were good, we weren't too good."

    Ramon Martinez added a solo shot in the ninth for the Cubs to make it 7-4.

    Struggling with his pitch count, Prior (2-1) allowed two hits and a run in five innings, walking three and fanning six. He departed after throwing 99 pitches.

    Aggressive and a bit wild, Prior got the crowd buzzing early by busting high-and-tight fastballs inside to Aaron Rowand and Frank Thomas. He also pitched out of an early jam.

    The White Sox loaded the bases in the first on Thomas' single and walks to Carlos Lee and Jose Valentin before Konerko flied out.

    In the fourth, Lee walked again, stole second, moved up on Konerko's infield single to short and scored on a wild pitch by Prior that sailed high off the tip of Michael Barrett's glove.

    But the 1-0 lead didn't last long. Jon Garland (5-5) was roughed up in the next two innings, with his error starting the Cubs on their way.

    Garland, a first-round draft choice of the Cubs in 1997, gave up a leadoff single to Hollandsworth in the fifth and then threw wildly on a pickoff attempt, allowing him to race to third. Barrett followed with an RBI grounder to tie it.

    "I gave up six runs and that's pretty much horrible," Garland said.

    When Juan Uribe then missed Corey Patterson's high pop in the sun for the White Sox's third error by the fifth inning, the Cubs took advantage.

    After Martinez walked, Grudzielanek -- who will share playing time with Todd Walker -- hit his first homer.

    "It might be a couple of days here and there. We'll have to wait and see," Grudzielanek said. "Walker's swinging the bat and he's playing very well."

    Sammy Sosa singled and scored on Hollandsworth's triple in the sixth, and the Cubs made it 6-1 on Barrett's hard single past short.

    Konerko's 18th homer followed walks to Uribe and Thomas. And after pinch-hitter Jamie Burke doubled off Sosa's glove, LaTroy Hawkins struck out Joe Crede. Hawkins also pitched the ninth for his 10th save in 13 chances.

    Mayor Richard M. Daley, a lifelong Sox fan, showed up before the game in the Cubs' dugout. He was wearing a Sox hat and chatted with Dusty Baker, who said earlier he wanted to meet the man who runs the city.

    "I'm a Sox fan, but I like the Cubs," Daley said, sounding like the politician he is. "When they are playing other teams I root for them. But I'm a Sox fan, I can't give that up."

    Rookie White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen played in the first interleague series between the two teams in 1997, but got his first taste of the frenzied atmosphere from the dugout steps.

    Game notes

    Sosa of the Cubs and Ross Gload of the White Sox are among 159 players who have appeared in at least one major league game for both teams. The list also includes current Cubs broadcasters Steve Stone and Ron Santo and Sox commentator Darrin Jackson. ... The White Sox lead the series 20-17. ... Cubs RHP Kerry Wood, recovering from a sore triceps, threw 15 pitches in the bullpen Friday and could pitch a simulated game Sunday or Monday.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press