Ernie Banks 1931-2015: Chicago honors Mr. Cub


We’re very sad to be releasing the news that Ernie Banks has passed away. The sweet persona of Mr. Cub was indeed the genuine article. His public image that exuded kindness and good works was also exactly who he was on the inside.

Here is a statement from Cubs Owner Tom Ricketts, released at 10:22 PM CST 1-23-15:


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Baseball Tonight’s Adnan Virk on Chicago Cubs HIGH HOPES (exclusive)

adnan virk

Adnan Virk (@AdnanESPN) wears many hats at ESPN: SportsCenter, NBA, college football, college basketball etc. Anchoring Baseball Tonight is one of his primary gigs, and he really knows his MLB. Virk was gracious enough to sit down with me for an exclusive chat about a whole host of topics, including some Chicago Cubs baseball.

The interview (podcast below) occurred the day after I finished up covering Cubs Convention 2015, so the renewed hope in Cubs Nation was top of mind.

(discussion of the “Cubbie Kool-Aid” begins around the 6 minute mark)

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Anthony Rizzo, Joe Maddon other ’15 Cubs Con stuff

anthony-rizzo cubs convention

Anthony Rizzo guaranteed that the Chicago Cubs would win the NL central this season, and that prediction was one of the hottest topics at 2015 Cubs Convention. When new Manager Joe Maddon came to the stage during the first night of Cubs Con, “host” Ryan Dempster brought up the bold statement of Anthony Rizzo.

Maddon backed up Rizzo for being supremely confident and bold. He said he was a fan of Rizzo’s faith in his team and self-assurance.

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Phallic Randy Johnson jokes and other Cubs Convention highlights


Former Chicago Cubs pitcher and current front office professional Ryan Dempster did a very fine job hosting/MCing day one of the 2015 Chicago Cubs Convention. This year, the first day had just two events: the opening ceremonies and “Late Night with Ryan Dempster.”

It was modeled after the old “Late Night with David Letterman” talk show (much more reminiscent of Letterman’s NBC days than his CBS tenure), and Dempster did himself say that Letterman was his role model for doing this three hour show.

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2015 Chicago Cubs Convention Preview


As we head into the 2015 Chicago Cubs Convention, it means we’re reaching two milestones this year. Clark, the much maligned mascot, turns 1. Let’s hope Clark gets treated much better in year two than he did in year one. Why Clark is so polarizing, has never made much sense, as there’s nothing to truly dislike about him.

Second milestone of 2015 is the “Back to the Future Part 11″ prophecy. Yes, the film made in 1990, and set in 1985/2015/1955 predicted the Cubs would win the World Series this year.

So you know it has to happen.

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Chicago Cubs Convention update; full list of attendees

chicago cubs convention

Chicago Cubs optimism is reaching dangerously high levels. The fan base known for their eternal optimism, in spite of all evidence to the contrary, is approaching post 2003 season/pre 2004 season levels of “everything is awesome.”

A new Manager in Joe Maddon, a new big name free agent signing in Jon Lester, more of those blue chip prospects being called up to the big show, “it’s all starting to come together, Pepper!” in the words of Lou Brown from “Major League.”

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Cubs lead the 5 most popular MLB stories of ’14

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Merry Christmas Cubs fans!
And with that, we count down The Sports Bank’s five most popular MLBA stories of the year. Numbers indicate unique visitor counts. The Cubs dominate the list, as you’ll see.

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


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


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


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


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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