Chicago Sun-Times Latest news from the Chicago Sun-Times Online en-us (Editor) Newspapers Chicago Sun-Times 84 34 30 Copyright 2014 <![CDATA[ Because a Cubs pitcher hit in the 13th, a catcher pitched — and won — in the 16th ]]> Lead story image

It took longer than any game in franchise history and so many players that a Cubs catcher got the victory pitching in relief. But when Starlin Castro finally drove a line-drive sacrifice fly to right field at just after 1:30 a.m. Wednesday morning against Tyler Matzek, the Cubs celebrated a 4-3, 16-inning victory. ]]> Wed, 30 Jul 2014 07:05:00 -0500 <![CDATA[ Cubs trade for LHP Felix Doubront ]]> Lead story image

The Cubs were expected to make a deadline Wednesday, and they’ve delivered on the expectations, getting Boston Red Sox disgruntled left-hander Felix Doubront. Talks also are reportedly heating up with several teams on talks involving a trade of switch-hitting infielder Emilio Bonifacio. A source confirmed the Cubs were close to finalizing a trade for Doubront that would send a player to be named later to Boston. Doubront, 26, is 2-4 with a 6.07 ERA in 17 appearances this year, including 10 starts. Doubront has been public with his displeasure over a demotion to the bullpen late last month, and Boston … ]]> Wed, 30 Jul 2014 19:29:19 -0500 <![CDATA[ Jed Hoyer expects some Cubs trade activity ]]> Lead story image

Cubs infielder Emilio Bonifacio drove in two runs with a homer in the fourth inning Tuesday night against the Colorado Rockies. But did he drive up his trade value enough to trigger a deal that brings the Cubs a nice prospect before Thursday’s trade deadline? Outfielder Nate Schierholtz didn’t draw the right interest at last year’s deadline to inspire the Cubs to move him during a breakout season. But does his lame-duck status — and the recent injuries to outfielders in Atlanta and Washington — mean he’s more likely to get traded even during this down season? These are the … ]]> Wed, 30 Jul 2014 17:01:47 -0500 <![CDATA[ It’s DL, not Iowa, for Cubs reliever Neil Ramirez ]]> Lead story image

The strange case of reliever Neil Ramirez got stranger Tuesday, leading to more questions about how first-year Cubs manager Rick Renteria has handled the bullpen. General manager Jed Hoyer said Tuesday that the Cubs decided to put Ramirez on the disabled list. Three days earlier, Renteria said Ramirez had been demoted to Class AAA Iowa to rest. Ramirez experienced soreness in his triceps after pitching Friday, said Hoyer, who expects the right-hander to spend no more than the minimum 15 days on the DL. ‘‘He’s going to be fine,’’ Hoyer said. ‘‘But it was probably the right way to handle … ]]> Wed, 30 Jul 2014 00:17:02 -0500 <![CDATA[ Cutting time on Hall of Fame ballot will make it tougher for cheaters ]]> Lead story image

COOPERSTOWN, N.Y. — It came and went without much commotion Saturday, maybe because it looked more like bureaucratic bookkeeping than anything else. But when the Hall of Fame announced the time former players can spend on its ballot was being reduced from 15 years to 10, it meant the drug cheaters had lost again. Barry Bonds, Sammy Sosa, Mark McGwire and Roger Clemens — the ‘‘Lab Four’’ of the Steroid Era — almost surely won’t make the Hall now. Five years can make a big difference in voter turnover, meaning that the chances of new voters coming in with a … ]]> Mon, 28 Jul 2014 21:31:23 -0500 <![CDATA[ Tsuyoshi Wada earns 1st MLB win ]]> Lead story image

Tsuyoshi Wada earned his first big league win, pitching seven strong innings Monday night as the Chicago Cubs defeated the Colorado Rockies 4-1. Anthony Rizzo drove in two runs to back Wada (1-1). In only his third career start in the majors, Wada cut through the Colorado lineup, allowing one run and five hits. It was a far cry from his last outing, when he lasted four innings and gave up five runs in a loss to San Diego. The sole blemish on Wada’s performance came in the sixth when the Rockies got three hits, capped by Nolan Arenado’s RBI … ]]> Mon, 28 Jul 2014 23:01:14 -0500 <![CDATA[ Cubs reliever James Russell wants to start ]]> Lead story image

As the Cubs try to figure out what their starting rotation will look like next year — or even down the stretch this year — James Russell believes he has one solution: James Russell. The left-handed reliever hasn’t started since emergency duty in 2011, but he always has considered himself a big-league starter and says he can help fill the rotation voids created by the July 4 trade of Jeff Samardzija and Jason Hammel. “There’s still not a doubt in my mind that I could do it,” he said before the Cubs opened a four-game series against the Colorado Rockies … ]]> Mon, 28 Jul 2014 22:19:35 -0500 <![CDATA[ What White Sox, Cubs are likely to do for rest of season ]]> Lead story image

The White Sox’ 51-55 record is right on the pace their 455 runs scored and 471 runs allowed suggest they should be on through the Pythagorean projection developed by Bill James. The Cubs have won a few games fewer than their data suggest. They were 42-61 through Sunday, and their 397 runs scored and 447 runs allowed pointed toward a 46-57 record. Does that mean the Sox can expect to stay on an even keel for the last two months and the Cubs can expect to improve a bit? Not necessarily. Rosters change, and so do other conditions. At, … ]]> Mon, 28 Jul 2014 22:23:01 -0500 <![CDATA[ Cubs trade infielder Darwin Barney to Dodgers ]]> Lead story image

A week after they designated Darwin Barney for assignment, the Cubs traded the 2012 Gold Glove second baseman to the Los Angeles Dodgers for a player to be named. What’s next? The Cubs are at least as active as most teams in discussions as they near the trade deadline Thursday with several players still available. And while many expect at least one or two more deals this week involving pending free agents, it might not be the fire sale many predicted a month or more ago. Team president Theo Epstein said last week that the Cubs valued the continuity provided … ]]> Mon, 28 Jul 2014 23:10:40 -0500 <![CDATA[ Greg Maddux baffled hitters, bullpen staff on way to Hall of Fame ]]> Lead story image

Just how good was Greg Maddux and his famous pinpoint command? As good as Magic Johnson and Larry Bird in that old McDonald’s commercial? To hear witnesses tell it, maybe better. Maddux, the four-time Cy Young winner who spent two tours with the Cubs and on Sunday was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame, dropped jaws every week with his little-known habit late in his career of finishing off his between-starts side sessions with trick-shot pitches for strikes. “His last pitch when he was throwing in the bullpen, he wanted to throw a ricochet strike off something, like off … ]]> Sun, 27 Jul 2014 21:39:01 -0500 <![CDATA[ Kyle Hendricks impressive despite loss against Cardinals ]]> Lead story image

The Cubs’ touted minor-league position prospects have the physical talent. But mental aptitude is the element that can be the difference for a gifted pitcher — as it was for the onetime Cub inducted into the Hall of Fame on Sunday. And as it could be for the young Cubs right-hander who was on the Wrigley Field mound as Greg Maddux was ushered into Cooperstown. ‘‘I’ve been asked about [Maddux] before,’’ Kyle Hendricks said. ‘‘He was one of the best pitchers of all time, and one of my favorites. He’s a guy I’d like to model myself after.’’ For now, … ]]> Mon, 28 Jul 2014 02:19:56 -0500