Cubs-Sox series becomes even MORE Corporate

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There’s a new corporate sponsor, and trophy, added to the Windy City’s Red Line series. Yes, it’s like a college football trophy game now…if it were sponsored by a giant oil multinational.

CHICAGO (April 26, 2010)Major League Baseball’s Chicago Cubs and Chicago White Sox today announced an official structure to the celebrated Chicago interleague rivalry known to fans as the Crosstown Classic. Starting in 2010, the series will be called the BP Crosstown Cup, and its new format will raise the stakes of the series and solidify its standing as an annual, citywide observance.

Details of the BP Crosstown Cup and its namesake trophy were discussed during an event at Chicago’s Millennium Park with representatives Tom Ricketts and Lou Piniella of the Cubs, and Gordon Beckham and A.J. Pierzynski of the White Sox.

“ Cubs and Sox fans have always been passionate about this rivalry. The BP Crosstown Cup recognizes the excitement of winning the crosstown series,” said Chicago Cubs Executive Chairman Tom Ricketts.  “In addition to bragging rights, fans will have a chance to win prizes through this promotion, which will make the series even more fun.”

“Thanks to Chicago ’s baseball fans, this city is such a passionate baseball town, particularly when it comes to the White Sox vs. Cubs in interleague play,” said Chicago White Sox chairman Jerry Reinsdorf.  “We think the creation of the Crosstown Cup, made possible through this unique, two-team, one-city partnership with our friends at BP, will elevate Chicago’s summer baseball rivalry to a new level for fans on both sides of town.”

Under the rules of the newly established BP Crosstown Cup, the two teams will continue to meet in a yearly six-game head-to-head series as they have since 1997. The team with the most wins in the yearly series will be formally awarded the rivalry’s namesake trophy. If the annual series is split 3-3, the BP Crosstown Cup will be awarded to the winner of the series’ last game.cubs sox

The teams will kick off their first series of 2010 at Wrigley Field on Friday, June 11, and will celebrate their 75th meeting on Sunday, June 13. The BP Crosstown Cup trophy will be awarded in a formal ceremony at U.S. Cellular Field following the deciding game of the six-game series.

The BP Crosstown Cup was established by the Chicago Cubs and Chicago White Sox in conjunction with BP Products North America, Inc., the newest corporate partner of both franchises. As the sponsor of the BP Crosstown Cup, BP will provide Chicago baseball fans an opportunity to see and interact with the Cup trophy throughout the season at select Chicagoland retail locations and limited Cubs and White Sox home games.

BP will also host an instant-win Crosstown Cup-themed promotion at more than 350 stations in the greater Chicagoland area, allowing participants the chance to win exclusive team prizes, like the opportunity to throw the first pitch at a Cubs or White Sox home game, the chance to attend VIP batting practice experiences, as well as autographed memorabilia and a total of more than $60,000 in BP gift cards.

“BP is proud to support both of Chicago ’s storied baseball franchises and bring this exciting new tradition to the many Chicago baseball fans that frequent BP sites,” said Linda Bartman, BP Fuels Marketing Communications Director. “The Cubs and White Sox are BP’s hometown teams, so this is a historic day for all of us.”

The newly formed BP Crosstown Cup is the latest professional sports rivalry formally established by two competing franchises. While numerous rivalry trophies change hands within the ranks of collegiate sports each year, the BP Crosstown Cup represents a rare partnership between two professional sports teams to elevate their ongoing rivalry into official standing. BP’s position as presenting sponsor of the Crosstown Cup will continue through the 2012 MLB season.

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