Cubs

White Sox vs. Cubs 'BP Crosstown Cup' Round 2 coverage returns to CSN on Monday, June 18

White Sox vs. Cubs 'BP Crosstown Cup' Round 2 coverage returns to CSN on Monday, June 18

Two full hours of Pre-Game coverage leading up to every 7:10 PM first pitch!Crosstown coverage team to include Harrelson, Stone, Kasper, Brenly, Melton, Hollandsworth, Boyle, Kaplan, Garfien, Otto - plus, The Big Hurt Frank Thomas!CSNChicago.com to provide LIVE video stream of EVERY post-game press conference, plus detailed analysis via Cubs Talk & White Sox Talk, feature storiesin-game Tweets from Kaplan, Garfien, Mooney and much more!

Chicago, IL (June 13, 2012) Comcast SportsNet, the television home for the most games and most comprehensive coverage of the Chicago White Sox and Chicago Cubs, is ready for Round 2 of the BP Crosstown Cup with LIVE coverage of ALL THREE GAMES of the series (June 18-20), featuring expanded, TWO-HOUR, pre-game coverage beginning at 5:00 PM on all three days.

Comcast SportsNets BP Crosstown Cup coverage gets underway each night at 5:00 PM with a special U.S. Cellular Field remote edition of Chicago Tribune Live presented by Captain Morgan (hosted by David Kaplan) featuring lively debate with local Tribune writers and a number of special guests on all three days.

At 6:00 PM each night (also live from U.S. Cellular Field), fans can catch up on the latest local & national sports news of the day, along with continued Crosstown pre-game coverage on SportsNet Central presented by AT&T U-Verse (hosted by Pat Boyle and Mark Schanowski).

Then, at 6:30 PM each night, viewers can look forward to full-blown pre-game coverage on White Sox Pre-Game Live (Monday & Wednesday) and Subaru Cubs Pre-Game Live (Tuesday). The pre-game shows will be hosted by Pat Boyle who will be joined by featured Crosstown analysts Frank Thomas & Dave Otto. Comcast SportsNets primary studio teams of Chuck Garfien and Bill Melton (White Sox) & David Kaplan and Todd Hollandsworth (Cubs) will also be live at U.S. Cellular Field with the very latest White Sox & Cubs pre-game reports and playercoaches interviews.

Game coverage begins with a 7:10 PM first pitch each night as Comcast SportsNet will televise the Monday, June 18 & Wednesday, June 20 games as White Sox telecasts featuring Ken Hawk Harrelson and Steve Stone with the game call. The game on Tuesday, June 19 will be presented as a Cubs telecast with Len Kasper and Bob Brenly calling the action.

Immediately following Monday and Wednesdays BP Crosstown Cup games, Comcast SportsNet will provide fans with an expanded edition of White Sox Post Game Live (hosted by Garfien featuring analysis from Thomas, Melton and Hollandsworth) and Cubs Post Game Live, presented by Horseshoe Casino (on Tuesday: hosted by Kaplan with analysis from Thomas, Hollandsworth and Melton). All three shows will feature the live post-game press conferences with White Sox manager Robin Ventura, Cubs manager Dale Sveum, along with locker room player interviews, complete game highlights and detailed post-game analysis.

In addition, Comcast SportsNets website, CSNChicago.com, will provide even more exclusive BP Crosstown Cup content including the following:

CSNChicago.com will stream EVERY press conference LIVE providing insider access to White Sox manager Robin Ventura and Cubs manager Dale Sveum addressing the media as it happens.

New-look White Sox & Cubs team pages offer the latest news, enhanced articles, player interviews, video, stats and more around the clock.

Cubs and White Sox In-Game Live: New and improved product featuring real-time, live data combined with timely editorial elements such as the fan stream - a one-stop shop for interacting with other fans via the web page or through Twitter and Facebook, in-game box score, out of town scoreboard and more.

Complete coverage of the series 247 from CSNChicago.com Cubs Insider Patrick Mooney (@CSNMooney) and Cubs Talk and White Sox Talk bloggers Tony Andracki and JJ Stankevitz. Additional coverage provided by CSN PrePost Game Live hosts Chuck Garfien (@ChuckGarfien) and David Kaplan (@thekapman).

Cubs Talk (@CubsTalkCSN) and 'White Sox Talk' (@WhiteSoxTalkCSN) offer news, views and analysis from Mooney, Garfien, Kaplan, Andracki and Stankevitz, as well as other CSNChicago.com contributors.

Twitter hashtags (WhiteSoxTalk, CubsTalk) to be used during the series for fans to submit comments, with the most intriguing fan comments to be featured on White SoxCubs Post Game Live.

Note Comcast SportsNets full coverage breakdown for the upcoming Cubs at White Sox BP Crosstown Cup series:

MONDAY, JUNE 18 & WEDNESDAY, JUNE 20

5:00 PM Chicago Tribune Live presented by Captain Morgan Special edition pre-game discussion & analysis with host David Kaplan, Tribune writers and special guests live from U.S. Cellular Field
6:00 PM SportsNet Central presented by AT&T U-Verse Even more pre-game coverage LIVE from U.S. Cellular Field
6:30 PM White Sox Pre-Game Live Special edition pre-game show LIVE from U.S. Cellular Field
7:00 PM CUBS at WHITE SOX (L) White Sox telecast featuring Ken Hawk Harrelson and Steve Stone
9:45 PM White Sox Post Game Live (time approx.) Featuring live post-game press conferences and player interviews
10:00 & 10:30 PM GMC SportsNet Central (time approx.) Complete game recaphighlights & more from the day in sports
12:00 AM SportsNet Central presented by CLR Complete game recaphighlights & more from the day in sports
12:30 AM Cubs at White Sox (game replay)

TUESDAY, JUNE 21

5:00 PM Chicago Tribune Live presented by Captain Morgan Special edition pre-game discussion & analysis with host David Kaplan, Tribune writers and special guests live from U.S. Cellular Field
6:00 PM SportsNet Central presented by AT&T U-Verse Even more pre-game coverage LIVE from U.S. Cellular Field
6:30 PM Subaru Cubs Pre-Game Live Special edition pre-game show LIVE from U.S. Cellular Field
7:00 PM CUBS at WHITE SOX (L) Cubs telecast featuring Len Kasper and Bob Brenly
9:45 PM Cubs Post Game Live, presented by Horseshoe Casino (time approx.) Featuring live post-game press conferences and player interviews
10:00 & 10:30 PM GMC SportsNet Central (time approx.) Complete game recaphighlights & more from the day in sports
12:00 AM SportsNet Central presented by CLR Complete game recaphighlights & more from the day in sports
12:30 AM Cubs at White Sox (game replay)

What Chicago sports fans should be thankful for

chicago-thankful.jpg
USA TODAY

What Chicago sports fans should be thankful for

Families gather and people talk about things they are thankful for on Thanksgiving, but what are Chicago sports fans happy for now?

Raised expectations on the North Side

Got to be thankful that a “disappointing” season is winning the division and losing in the NLCS. The expectations have skyrocketed, and that’s thanks to a ridiculous nucleus of bats and a steady front office. Not many clubs can say that. Also, though, it’s important to be appreciative of the Wrigley bar stretch. They may charge $8 for a Miller Lite, but it’s always a damn good party.

Javy tags, too. Don't forget Javy tags.

Rebuild sparking hope in White Sox fans

Where to begin? Obviously, be thankful for the plethora of young talent that will soon take over the South Side. Be thankful for Avi Time (while you still can). Be thankful that taking your friends or family to a game won’t cause you to take out a second mortgage. Be thankful for the 2020 World Series and, of course, 2020 MVP Eloy Jimenez. But most importantly, be thankful that Rick Hahn’s phone stays buzzing.

Eddie O back in the booth for the Blackhawks

The Blackhawks are having a rough start to the season, but at least Eddie Olczyk is back in the booth. The longtime Blackhawks broadcaster returned to the booth on Oct. 18 after missing time while undergoing chemotherapy treatments for colon cancer.

With some of the key names from the Blackhawks’ title runs either leaving or being unable to play this season (in the case of Marian Hossa), Blackhawks fans are probably thankful to see a familiar face and hear a familiar voice during games.

Lauri Markkanen leading the Bulls rebuild

OK, there’s not much to be thankful for about the current Bulls team. At 3-13, the Bulls are tied for the fewest wins in the NBA (maybe in the long-term that’s something to be thankful for as well). However, Zach LaVine’s pending debut after his eventual return from injury should help create some excitement.

The thing Bulls fans really should be thankful for this year is the play of rookie Lauri Markkanen. The 20-year-old leads the team in scoring (14.6 points per game) and rebounds (8.3 per game) while shooting at a high percentage (34.2 percent on threes and 50.6 percent on twos). It’s only the beginning of the Bulls’ rebuild, but Markkanen is a good start.

Mitchapalooza

If a few things broke the Bears’ way, Chicagoans could have been grateful that the team was finally out of the cellar. Instead, we’ll settle for the fact that there seems to be some building blocks already in place. Mitchell Trubisky, Tarik Cohen, Leonard Floyd and Akiem Hicks seem to fit that category. Also, some may be thankful that this is likely John Fox’s last season at the helm.

Fire ending a playoff drought

After finishing dead last in MLS in 2015 and 2016, the Fire were one of the most improved teams in the league in 2017. After posting the third best record in the league, the Fire made a first playoff appearance since 2012.

The playoff run didn’t last long with the Fire losing a play-in game at home, but the arrival of Bastian Schweinsteiger and the league’s leading goal-scorer, Nemanja Nikolic, helped fill the stadium with six sellouts and gave Fire fans something to cheer for.

With Leonard Floyd going on injured reserve, will the Bears have a pressing need at outside linebacker in 2018?

floyd-ir-1123.jpg
USA TODAY

With Leonard Floyd going on injured reserve, will the Bears have a pressing need at outside linebacker in 2018?

The Bears placed Leonard Floyd on injured reserve Thursday morning, ending the second-year outside linebacker’s season following a knee injury suffered Sunday against the Detroit Lions. Floyd suffered an MCL and PCL injury and will have surgery in the next week, coach John Fox said, and the Bears do not have a timetable for his recovery yet. But that Floyd didn't suffer damage to his ACL is potentially good news for Floyd's recovery timetable. 

Still, with Floyd on injured reserve and out for the season, the Bears’ current outside linebacker depth chart consists of two veterans (Pernell McPhee and Sam Acho) and two practice squad signees (Isaiah Irving and Howard Jones). These final six games of the 2017 season could serve as auditions for all four players for roles on the 2018 Bears. 

If every team needs at least three good pass rushers, the Bears can count on Akiem Hicks and Floyd for 2018, provided Floyd comes back healthy. But who’s the third?

The Bears could save about $7.5 million in cap space if they release McPhee in 2018; if they were to cut ties with Willie Young, who’s on injured reserve right now as well, it would provide $4.5 million in cap relief. McPhee will be 29 in December, while Young will turn 33 next September. 

The Bears won’t necessarily need the cap relief next year, and could certainly decide to keep both players, who’ve shown they’re still productive when healthy. But even if both players are back, the Bears may need to add another outside linebacker via free agency of the draft — remember, the team could’ve began the season with Floyd, Young, McPhee, Acho and Lamarr Houston as their outside linebackers; an injury Houston suffered in the fourth preseason game ended his time in Chicago. 

Needs at wide receiver and cornerback are pressing, but outside linebacker may need to be in that same conversation. If the Bears have a top-10 pick for the fourth consecutive year, plus some cap space, they perhaps could have the ability to address all three needs in March and April. 

That may be looking a little too far into the future, though. The best-case for the Bears is McPhee finishes the season strong and Irving and/or Jones shows something in the opportunities they receive in these final six games (Jones, for what it’s worth, had five sacks as a rookie with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 2015). But the worst-case — and perhaps the most realistic — is that the Bears go into the offseason needing to fill at least one pass-rushing spot.