Chicago Sun-Times Latest news from the Chicago Sun-Times Online en-us (Editor) Newspapers Chicago Sun-Times 84 34 30 Copyright 2014 <![CDATA[ Joe Maddon: A real ray of hope for Cubs ]]> Lead story image

Finally, after five seasons of bad baseball from the Cubs and superhuman patience from their fans, something real. Something with flesh, bones and a track record of achievement at the major-league level. ]]> Thu, 30 Oct 2014 22:50:00 -0500 <![CDATA[ Joe Maddon would be Theo’s third hire in four seasons ]]> Lead story image

The last time Theo Epstein hired the right manager at the right time and turned it into the right answer was when he hired Terry Francona to manage the Red Sox. Eleven years later, could he repeat history? With the guy who finished second to ­Francona in that process? Given the frequency with which the Cubs’ third-year team president has gone through managers on the North Side already, he almost has to — especially as ownership writes checks to pay off a manager’s contract for the third time in four years. But, then, Joe Maddon is universally considered the opportunity … ]]> Thu, 30 Oct 2014 22:50:00 -0500 <![CDATA[ Joe Maddon, Cubs historic deal announcement could come Thursday ]]> Lead story image

The Cubs were poised to make their biggest free-agent splash in the Theo Epstein era Wednesday night, closing in on a multiyear deal to hire Joe Maddon as their manager, according to several sources. ]]> Thu, 30 Oct 2014 12:11:16 -0500 <![CDATA[ Cubs in talks with Joe Maddon, could have answer by Friday ]]> Lead story image

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — With the ball in his hands and his team leading the World Series three games to two, Jake Peavy had the starting assignment every pitcher dreams of — a chance to win the series. But the night terrors that ensued during the Kansas City Royals’ seven-run second inning Tuesday might haunt Peavy for quite some time. ‘‘I can’t imagine anything being any sweeter,’’ an eager Peavy had said beforehand. In a quiet San Francisco Giants clubhouse at Kauffman Stadium afterward, it was nothing but dejection and disappointment for Peavy. The Royals’ 10-0 win sets up a … ]]> Wed, 29 Oct 2014 00:23:48 -0500 <![CDATA[ Rick Renteria hasn’t heard anything from Cubs while Joe Maddon rumors swirl ]]> Lead story image

A year ago, Rick Renteria was told to wait: The Cubs liked him for their managerial opening from the first week of the hiring process but needed to check out other options before signing him. Now he’s not even being told that much. In fact, barely a month after team president Theo Epstein said Renteria would “absolutely” return for a second season as manager, multiple sources say neither Epstein nor ownership has contacted Renteria during four days of coast-to-coast reports that he’s likely to be replaced by sudden free agent Joe Maddon. While Renteria twists in the wind of growing … ]]> Mon, 27 Oct 2014 22:29:47 -0500 <![CDATA[ Jake Peavy, Jon Lester have eye on Cubs as package deal ]]> Lead story image

SAN FRANCISCO — Jon Lester to the Cubs as a free agent this winter? Jake Peavy has a better idea: a package deal. “No, I’m not offering a package to the Cubs,” the San Francisco Giants pitcher said, clarifying the impression he made while talking about himself, the Cubs and his pal Lester. “There’s a package deal out there for any team.” Lester and Peavy added to a mix that might include star manager Joe Maddon running the show? Imagine that while watching Peavy take the mound for the Giants on Tuesday in Game 6 of the World Series with … ]]> Mon, 27 Oct 2014 23:34:06 -0500 <![CDATA[ Madison Bumgarner, Hunter Pence putting up big numbers in postseason ]]> Lead story image

On Tuesday or Wednesday, either the Giants or Royals will become the sixth wild-card team to win a World Series since wild cards were added to the postseason in 1995. While we’re waiting, a few postseason notes, by the numbers: ◆ The Royals’ have been a little more generous than they have been all year. They allowed 3.85 runs per game with a 3.51 ERA in the regular season. In the postseason, that’s up to 4.07 runs and a 3.80 ERA. ◆ The Giants, however, have been stingier than they were in the regular season, when they allowed 3.79 runs … ]]> Mon, 27 Oct 2014 23:34:06 -0500 <![CDATA[ Royals’ James Shields would be great fit in Cubs’ rotation ]]> Lead story image

SAN FRANCISCO — When Kansas City Royals ace James Shields walked off the mound at the end of a scoreless sixth inning Sunday night at AT&T Park, after his final start of the year, he looked more like “Big Game James” than he ever has. Not just because of a strong performance in his Game 5 start against the San ­Francisco Giants, which ended in a 5-0 loss by the Royals. Mostly because now the Big Hunt is about to start for free-agent pitching, and nobody is hungrier for the kind of reliability, durability and quality that Shields brings than … ]]> Sun, 26 Oct 2014 23:41:31 -0500 <![CDATA[ Dale Sveum wants to manage again but won’t promote himself ]]> Lead story image

SAN FRANCISCO — Dale Sveum didn’t get calls from any of the three teams that filled managerial openings in the last month, or from the Minnesota Twins, who are in the final stages of filling their vacancy. And he isn’t sure where he’ll stand when the Tampa Bay Rays regroup and start interviews to replace Joe Maddon. “If somebody calls, they call,” said Sveum, who has been on the Kansas City Royals’ coaching staff since a few hours after he was fired as Cubs manager last fall. “If somebody really wants me, they come find me. They know where I’m … ]]> Sun, 26 Oct 2014 20:08:09 -0500 <![CDATA[ Cubs tone down Joe Maddon talk fearful of upstaging World Series ]]> Lead story image

SAN FRANCISCO — If you can’t beat ’em, upstage ’em? Not if they can help it. Not anymore than they already have. As Day 2 of the Joe Maddon-to-the-Cubs talk played out against the backdrop of Game 4 of the World Series at AT&T Park, the principal players in baseball’s suddenly biggest drama seemed to ­retreat backstage — out of respect for the Series, sources said — even as Maddon’s agent confirmed ­contact with the Cubs. Internally, the belief the Cubs will land Maddon is strong enough that a source suggested team ­president Theo Epstein traveled this weekend to Florida … ]]> Sun, 26 Oct 2014 09:07:30 -0500 <![CDATA[ Ozzie Guillen would love to coach for Joe Maddon — with Cubs ]]> Lead story image

SAN FRANCISCO — When Ozzie Guillen heard the news about Joe Maddon’s sudden free agency — and reports of the Cubs’ just-as-sudden interest — the response was immediate: Count him in. “This is one guy I’d love to coach for,” said the former White Sox manager who’s on the World Series broadcast team for ESPN Deportes. “He’s a very good baseball man. And he’s not a guy who’s going to be looking behind his back thinking I want to take his job. “I’ve managed before. Economically, I’m pretty good. I just want to be back in the game.” Not that … ]]> Sun, 26 Oct 2014 00:38:00 -0500