Chicago Cubs Wiretap

Addison Russell's Wife Files For Divorce, Won't Talk To MLB

Jun 22, 2017 10:33 AM

Addison Russell's wife has filed for divorce and will not meet with Major League Baseball to discuss the investigation into domestic abuse claims.

MLB began its investigation earlier this month after Melisa Russell, in an Instagram post, accused her husband of cheating and implied that the couple was breaking up. A comment related to the post from someone she identified as a close friend accused the player of physically abusing his wife.

Addison Russell has denied abusing his wife, saying in a statement two weeks ago that "any allegation I have abused my wife is false and hurtful."

ESPN

Tags: Chicago Cubs, Misc Rumor

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Anthony Rizzo Won't Be Suspended For Violating Collision Rule

Jun 21, 2017 7:40 AM

Major League Baseball says Anthony Rizzo violated the home-plate collision rule in Monday's game between the Chicago Cubs and San Diego Padres but will not be disciplined.

Rizzo was attempting to score from third base on a lineout to center by Kris Bryant in the bottom of the sixth inning when he slammed into catcher Austin Hedges. Rizzo's left shoulder caught Hedges square in the right thigh and midsection. Hedges held onto the ball for an inning-ending double-play.

"It's an instinct play, there's no intent to be malicious toward Austin Hedges, toward the San Diego Padres, it wasn't a statement," Rizzo said. "It's a tough baseball rule and there's a lot of gray area.

"The league looked at it, and it's over with now."

Under Rule 7.13, a player may not run out of direct line to the plate to initiate contact with the fielder, meaning the runner can't go out of his way to plow through the catcher.

ESPN

Tags: Chicago Cubs, Misc Rumor

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Andy Green Calls Out Anthony Rizzo After Home Plate Collision

Jun 20, 2017 7:39 AM

Andy Green did little to conceal his feelings about the home-plate collision that knocked Austin Hedges out of Monday night's game, calling Anthony Rizzo's hit "a cheap shot."

Rizzo was attempting to score from third base on a lineout to center by Kris Bryant in the bottom of the sixth when he slammed into Hedges. Rizzo's left shoulder caught Hedges square in the right thigh and midsection and the San Diego Padres catcher fell over backward, holding onto the ball for an inning-ending double play.

Hedges left the game with a bruised thigh. He was replaced by Luis Torrens.

"I think you look at that play and it's a fairly egregious violation of the rule," Green said. "The rule exists to protect the catcher. The safety of the catcher is more in jeopardy now when you have the rule to protect you because you're not expecting to get hit when you give a guy a plate like that.

"That's a cheap shot. I'm not saying he's a dirty player at all -- nobody is saying that -- but he clearly deviated from his path to hit our catcher, took our catcher out. Rule exists to protect him. It's a disheartening play to see come about like that."

ESPN

Tags: Chicago Cubs, San Diego Padres, Misc Rumor

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Addison Russell Hasn't Heard Anything About Possible Suspension

Jun 19, 2017 7:59 AM

Addison Russell hasn't heard any results from Major League Baseball's investigation into an Instagram post by a friend of his wife's that alleged domestic violence.

"As far as I know I haven't heard anything, and that's where I'm going to leave it," Russell said.

Russell has struggled this season, but has found his way at the plate a bit in the Chicago Cubs' last few games.

"The body feels good; the mind feels good," he said. "I feel like I'm heading in the right direction as far as where the season is going, trying to finish up this first half and then take it easy at the All-Star break. I'm just trying to finish off this first half as strong as I can."

Gordon Wittenmeyer/Chicago Sun-Times

Tags: Chicago Cubs, Misc Rumor

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Anthony Rizzo 'All-In' As Cubs' Leadoff Hitter

Jun 19, 2017 7:22 AM

After getting on base for the fifth consecutive time to start a game on Sunday, Anthony Rizzo says he is "all-in" as the new lead-off hitter for the Chicago Cubs.

"It's crazy," Rizzo said. "It's weird. It's funny, but it's great. We've played better baseball, hit the ball better. It's good to finally win a road series. It's been a while."

Joe Maddon was looking for anything to spark Chicago's underachieving offense, but few could have thought Rizzo hitting first might do it. He has two home runs, a walk, a single and a double since being inserted into the leadoff role. Rizzo is hitting .429, highest among leadoff men with at least 20 plate appearances.

"It's coinciding with him swinging the bat well," Maddon said. "Plus, there's the added incentive of doing it. He likes doing it ... Right now, we're going to stay with it. I like it. I think it's played well. I think it's inspired the lineup."

The Cubs have scored 37 runs in the five games since Maddon made the change.

Jesse Rogers/ESPN

Tags: Chicago Cubs, Misc Rumor

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Cubs Selling Wrigley Field Ivy For $200

Jun 16, 2017 7:29 AM

The Chicago Cubs are selling leaves from the famous ivy covering the outfield wall at Wrigley Field to fans for $200.

Each leaf also costs $15 for shipping. They were gathered after last season, when the Cubs won their first World Series in 108 years. There are 2,016 leaves available and each one has been authenticated with a hologram.

Chris Cwik/Yahoo! Sports

Tags: Chicago Cubs, Misc Rumor

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Anthony Rizzo Homers In First-Ever Leadoff Start

Jun 14, 2017 7:49 AM

Anthony Rizzo homered off of Zack Wheeler to open Tuesday's game between the Chicago Cubs and New York Mets.

It was the first leadoff start of Rizzo's career.

"Saw the first pitch really well, just swung on the second pitch, it was right there," Rizzo said. "Just wanted to stay through it and not try to do too much."

Joe Maddon finally relented and let Rizzo hit first mostly because his team's offense has been stuck in a season-long slump.

"If everything is in place and in order, I probably would not have done that," Maddon said.

Jesse Rogers/ESPN

Tags: Chicago Cubs, Misc Rumor

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2017 MLB Draft First Round Results

Jun 13, 2017 9:11 AM

The first round of the 2017 Major League Baseball draft was held on Monday night with a lot of young talent coming off the board early. Here are the full results from the first round:

  1. Twins — Royce Lewis, SS, JSerra Catholic HS (California)
  2. Reds — Hunter Greene, RHP/SS, Notre Dame HS (California)
  3. Padres — MacKenzie Gore, LHP, Whiteville HS (North Carolina)
  4. Rays — Brendan McKay, 1B/LHP, Louisville
  5. Braves — Kyle Wright, RHP, Vanderbilt
  6. Athletics — Austin Beck, OF, North Davidson HS (North Carolina)
  7. Diamondbacks — Pavin Smith, 1B, Virginia
  8. Phillies — Adam Haseley, OF, Virginia
  9. Brewers — Keston Hiura, 2B, UC Irvine
  10. Angels — Jordan Adell, OF, Ballard HS (Kentucky)
  11. White Sox — Jake Burger, 3B, Missouri State
  12. Pirates — Shane Baz, RHP, Concordia Lutheran HS (Texas)
  13. Marlins — Trevor Rogers, LHP, Carlsbad HS (New Mexico)
  14. Royals — Nick Pratto, 1B, Huntington Beach HS (California)
  15. Astros —J.B. Bukauskas, RHP, North Carolina
  16. Yankees — Clarke Schmidt, RHP, South Carolina
  17. Mariners — Evan White, 1B, Kentucky
  18. Tigers — Alex Faedo, RHP, Florida
  19. Giants — Heliot Ramos, OF, Leadership Christian Academy (Puerto Rico)
  20. Mets — David Peterson, LHP, Oregon
  21. Orioles — D.L. Hall, LHP, Valdosta HS (Georgia)
  22. Blue Jays — Logan Warmoth, SS, North Carolina
  23. Dodgers — Jeren Kendall, OF, Vanderbilt
  24. Red Sox — Tanner Houck, RHP, Missouri
  25. Nationals — Seth Romero, LHP, Houston
  26. Rangers — Bubba Thompson, OF, McGill-Toolen Catholic HS (Alabama)
  27. Cubs — Brendon Little, LHP, State College of Florida

RealGM Staff Report

Tags: Arizona Diamondbacks, Atlanta Braves, Baltimore Orioles, Boston Red Sox, Chicago Cubs, Chicago White Sox, Cincinnati Reds, Cleveland Indians, Colorado Rockies, Detroit Tigers, Houston Astros, Kansas City Royals, Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, Los Angeles Dodgers, Miami Marlins, Milwaukee Brewers, Minnesota Twins, New York Mets, New York Yankees, Oakland Athletics, Philadelphia Phillies, Pittsburgh Pirates, San Diego Padres, San Francisco Giants, Seattle Mariners, St. Louis Cardinals, Tampa Bay Rays, Texas Rangers, Toronto Blue Jays, Washington Nationals, Draft, Draft Misc, Misc Rumor

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Addison Russell Denies Domestic Violence Accusation

Jun 9, 2017 7:28 AM

Addison Russell has denied an accusation of domestic violence against his wife amid a Major League Baseball investigation.

In a post on Instagram, Russell's wife, Melisa, accused her husband of cheating and implied that the couple was breaking up. A comment on the post from someone Melisa Russell identifies as a close friend accused the player of physically abusing his wife.

Russell hasn't played in the Chicago Cubs' last two games.

"Any allegation I have abused my wife is false and hurtful," he said in a statement issued Thursday afternoon. "For the well-being of my family, I'll have no further comment."

ESPN

Tags: Chicago Cubs, Misc Rumor

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Does Bryce Harper Want To Play For Cubs?

Jun 5, 2017 8:06 AM

Bryce Harper would like to play for the Chicago Cubs, according to Peter Gammons.

Gammons made the comment on 670 The Score. "I have people tell me that Bryce Harper, really, would prefer to play for the Cubs," the veteran reporter said.

Harper is eligible for free agency after the 2018 season and his next contract is expected to be worth more than $400 million.

Peter Gammons

Tags: Chicago Cubs, Washington Nationals, Free Agent Rumor, Misc Rumor

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Cubs Hoping Kyle Schwarber Will Rebound From 7-Hole
Looking to help Kyle Schwarber get on track, the Cubs are moving the slugger down in the batting order.

Carrie Muskat/MLB

Theo Epstein Visits Struggling Cubs In San Diego
Theo Epstein visited the Cubs in San Diego on Tuesday, saying he is providing "moral support" for the reigning champions amid their ongoing struggles and insisting no drastic changes are imminent.

Jesse Rogers/ESPN

Carlos Zambrano Will Pitch In Venezuelan Winter League
Carlos Zambrano will return to the mound, but it remains to be seen if he will aim to make a Major League comeback.

Bruce Levine/670 The Score

Joe Maddon Becomes Eighth Active Manager With 1,000 Wins
Joe Maddon celebrated with a glass of red wine made by Big Smooth Wines out of Lodi, California in the press room.

Associated Press

Theo Epstein Isn't Worried About Struggling Cubs
The Cubs are 19-19 after winning the World Series last fall and have a losing record at home.

Jesse Rogers/ESPN

Sarcastic Joe Maddon Has 'Ideas' For Safety Rules
Joe Maddon engaged in a sarcastic rant on safety on Sunday morning after going off on the subject after a loss on Saturday as well.

Jesse Rogers/ESPN

Joe Maddon Blames Fatigue For Cubs' Slow Start
The Cubs are 17-17, 2.5 games back of first place in the National League Central.

Jesse Rogers/ESPN

Miguel Montero: Cubs Need To Wake Up
Miguel Montero had strong words for the Cubs after losing to the Rockies in the opener of Tuesday's doubleheader.

Jesse Rogers/ESPN

Cubs World Series Trophy Damaged At Concert
Fans attending a charity concert in Boston put on by Theo Epstein accidentally damaged the Cubs' World Series trophy.

ESPN

Kris Bryant May 'Just Play It Out' Rather Than Seek Extension
Kris Bryant, drafted second overall in 2013, won't reach free agency until after the 2021 season.

Gordon Wittenmeyer/Chicago Sun-Times

Cubs Coveted Andrew Benintendi In 2015 Draft
The Red Sox finished the 2014 season two games worse than the Cubs, earning them the seventh pick while the Cubs selected ninth.

Alex Speier/Boston Globe

Gift Ngoepe Becomes First African-Born Player In MLB
Gift Ngoepe had a hit and drew a walk in the Pirates' win over the Cubs.

Jesse Rogers/ESPN

Jake Arrieta Believes MLB's Drug Testing System Is Working
Jake Arrieta estimates that he has been drug tested between 10 to 15 times over the last year for performance-enhancing drugs.

670 The Score

Cubs World Series Rings Selling Well For Jostens
Cubs World Series rings, available for fans through Jostens, have been selling very well since they hit the market on April 12.

Darren Rovell/ESPN

Cubs Trying To Prevent Non-Players From Selling World Series Rings
The Cubs are asking non-players to sign an agreement giving the team the right to buy back World Series rings for $1 in an effort to discourage employees from selling them.

Jesse Rogers/ESPN

First Base From Game 7 Sells For $101,237
The first base used for the final two innings of Game 7 of the 2016 World Series sold for $101,237, the most ever paid at auction for a baseball base.

Darren Rovell/ESPN

Joe Maddon Open To Idea Of Automated Ball-Strike Calls
Joe Maddon is one of baseball's most forwarding-thinking minds, but it comes as a surprise that he's open to the idea of automated ball-strike balls.

Johnny Oleksinski/New York Post

Jason Heyward's Changed Swing Yielding Positive Results
Much has been made of Jason Heyward's swing and the changes he made this offseason in an effort to increase his diminished production at the plate.

Travis Sawchik/FanGraphs

Jake Arrieta Takes Exception To Questions About Diminished Velocity
Jake Arrieta wasn't happy with an article published by FanGraphs that discussed his diminished velocity.

Patrick Mooney/CSN Chicago

Steinbrenners Took 72 Hours To Approve Trading Chapman To Cubs
Brian Cashman reached an agreement to trade Aroldis Chapman to the Cubs in late July last summer, but he had to sweat out approval from ownership.

Travis Sawchik/FanGraphs