Latest news and rumors: Ricketts issues apology, Cubs TV schedule, and more

by - Columnist -
Jim Young - USA Today Sports
Jim Young - USA Today Sports

Cubs’ news and notes

Cubs’ Opening Day: 51 days. (March 28 vs. Rangers)

Pitchers/Catchers Report: 8 Days.

First Spring Training game: 18 Days. (Saturday, February 23, Brewers vs. Cubs at Sloan Park)

Tom Ricketts: After racially sensitive emails from his father’s account was leaked to the media, Cubs’ owner, Tom Ricketts, issued this apology:

“We are aware of the racially insensitive emails in my father’s account that were published by an online media outlet. let me be clear: the language and views expressed in those emails have no place in our society.”

“My father is not involved with the operation of the Chicago Cubs in any way. I am trusted with representing this organization and our fans with a respect for people from all backgrounds. these emails do not reflect the culture we’ve worked so hard to build at the Chicago Cubs since 2009.”

Cubs TV schedule: The Cubs released their spring training broadcast schedule and six games will be on television with the first game televised between the Cubs and Brewers on March 2.

Congrats: Congratulations to former Cubs, Ryan Dempster, who was inducted into the Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame today.

Latest news and rumors from around the league

Harper/Machado saga: Now in its 100th day, the free-agent superstar war continues on. There are now reportedly nine teams in on Harper although some are more serious than others, and Machado has somewhere between four and five dance partners reportedly. With so many options between them, one must now begin to wonder if the holdout is due to the owners being cheap (as everyone originally alleged) or whether it has become a matter of greed on behalf of the players.

Arbitration results: Carlos Correa gets $5M (Astros had submitted $4.25M), and Tommy Pham gets $4.1M (Rays had suggested $3.5M).

Birthday wishes: Happy birthday to Hank Aaron, who turns 85 today.

Retirement: Former Rangers’ righty, Steve Delabar, says he’s no longer seeking playing opportunities. Although he’s not yet filed formal paperwork for his retirement, Delabar has not seen MLB action in two seasons and currently coaching high school baseball.

Giants: The Giants have acquired RHP Jake Barrett from the Diamondbacks for cash and have designated OF John Andreoli for assignment. SF has also reportedly been trying to structure a deal with the Yankees for outfielder Jacoby Ellsbury.

Marlins: Miami has signed OF, Curtis Granderson, to a minor league deal. Although there is an invite to spring training, what a slap in the face for Granderson, as he’s seen playoff action eight times with five different teams and has appeared in the post-season for the last four years.

Phillies: The Phils have signed catcher/1B, Drew Butera, to a minor league deal. The Phillies have also checked in on Marlins catcher, JT Realmuto, though no deal is close.

Rangers: Texas has re-signed free-agent righty, Ricardo Rodrigues to a minor league deal.

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