Chicago Cubs news and notes: Jason Hammel, WLS-TV


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The Chicago Cubs and right-handed pitcher Jason Hammel have agreed to terms on a two-year contract that includes a club option for the 2017 season.

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Ryan Dempster retires, gets Cubs front office gig


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Ryan Dempster announced today that he will retire as a member of the Cubs organization. Dempster will remain with the club as a Special Asst. to President Theo Epstein and General Manager Jed Hoyer. Ryan Dempster was a two-time All-Star and a World Series winner with the Boston Red Sox in 2013.

He did not pitch in the Major Leagues last season.

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Chicago Cubs hold holiday toy drive


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The Chicago Cubs are inviting their fans to participate in a holiday toy drive benefiting children at Lawrence Hall Youth Services to conclude the team’s yearlong 100 Gifts of Service. Toys may be donated at the Cubs Store across from Wrigley Field beginning today until December 4 at 5:30 p.m., when the team will once again host a holiday celebration and tree lighting ceremony at the corner of Clark and Addison streets.

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Joe Maddon, Chicago Cubs agree to 5 year, $25m deal


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The Chicago Cubs officially named Joe Maddon the 54th manager in franchise history today, and we’re minutes away from his official introductory presser. Joe Maddon has a five-year contract through 2019. The way the Cubs handled this was…questionable to say the least. It’s a great hire no doubt. It’s obviously the right thing to do in terms of building a winner as soon as possible.

However, the franchise portrayed as the warm and cuddly Cubbies was cutthroat and cold-blooded in the way they jettisoned Rick Renteria.

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Theo Epstein statement on Renteria firing, Maddon hire


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Yes, Theo Epstein the “smartest man in the room” always. Regardless of whatever room he’s in. Like I said on Twitter:

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Jay Cutler Don’t Care Award: Chicago Cubs


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Welcome to the October 10th, 2014 edition of “The Cuttys,” or the Jay Cutler DON’T CARE awards. They honor, as one Facebook commenter put it:

“all the non-news that’s fit to delete.”

Or more literally:  “terrible attempts at creating news, that I instantly deleted upon seeing it in my inbox.”

All media members receive dozens of press releases and story pitches from publicists, Sports Information Departments, Media Relations and PR people every week. This one was the most utterly asinine and completely worthless that I received this week.

And as always, in case you missed it, here’s how these awards got named.

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Chicago Cubs release 2015 Spring Training schedule


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With the Chicago Cubs it’s always “wait till next year.” And just last week during his annual end of the season “state of the cubs” press conference Theo Epstein threw down the gauntlet to his own organization saying that 2015 is next year. Theo, the smartest man in the room, regardless of whatever room that is, pretty much said the Chicago Cubs will be competitive/contenders next year.

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Travis Wood: Chicago Cubs potential “Loogy”


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Overshadowed by RH Edwin Jackson’s disastrous two-year stint in the Cubs’ rotation and albatross contract was the severe regression of LH starter Travis Wood this season.

In his all-star campaign of 2013, Wood tossed 200 innings, allowing 163 hits and 66 walks.  Among the 79 qualifying starters, Wood ranked third in BABIP (batting average on balls in play) (.248); 19th in ERA (3.11); ninth in batting average against (BA) (.218); and 21st in WHIP (1.15).

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Chicago Cubs farm system All-Star team: outfielders


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We complete our second-annual Cubs minor-league All-Star team today by naming three outfielders to the squad.  In previous installments, we selected pitchers; a catcher and  first-basemanand a second-baseman, shortstop and third-baseman.

 

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Chicago Cubs move minor league team to South Bend


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The Chicago Cubs are moving their Class A affiliate from the Kane County Cougars to the South Bend Sliver Hawks. The Low A ball franchise may rename itself to the Cubs. The South Bend franchise will unveil a new name, logo and uniform, Thursday, September 25, during a press conference beginning at 9 a.m. ET at the local St. Joseph County Chamber of Commerce. Officials from both South Bend and the Cubs will be on hand.

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Chicago Cubs to be national game of the week Saturday


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The Chicago Cubs are going to be on national television…not in 2015, or in 2016 when they might become decent again. Not in 2017 when they might actually be good. Or 2018 when they win the NL Central or 2019 when they win the World Series. (All these predictions will come true of course, I have 100% certainty) But Saturday, this Saturday.

The Chicago Cubs may be on national television 2015-19 as well, but the network’s haven’t released the schedule just yet. However, today, Fox announced this weekend’s Saturday game of the week.

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Cubs minor league All-Star team Part 3: 2B, SS, 3B


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Having selected pitchers and a first-baseman and catcher for our second annual Cubs minor league All-Star team, today we continue our journey across the diamond. There is as much suspense about who will represent the squad at second-base, shortstop and third-base as whether 1970’s television detective Columbo would nab the bad guy by show’s end.

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