Preps Talk

5 Questions with...The Score's David Schuster

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5 Questions with...The Score's David Schuster

CSN Chicago Senior Director of Communications
CSNChicago.com Contributor

Want to know more about your favorite Chicago media celebrities? CSNChicago.com has your fix as we put the city's most popular personalities on the spot with everyone's favorite local celeb feature entitled 5 Questions with...

On Wednesdays, exclusively on CSNChicago.com, its our turn to grill the local media and other local VIPs with five random sports and non-sports related questions that will definitely be of interest to old and new fans alike.

This weeks guest .. a guy who has pretty much seen it all in his 30-plus years of covering the Chicago sports scene ... his trust and rapport with athletes and team executives has paid major dividends in a career that most sports journalists will would die for ... calling him a sports nut is a fair assessment, but hes also one of the nicest guys around ... from WSCR 670 The Score, here are 5 Questions with ... DAVID SCHUSTER!

BIO: David Schuster has been covering the local sports scene for over 30 years and, in that time, he has seen more games and events then just about anybody. Hes covered nine local championships (six by the Bulls, and one each by the Bears, White Sox & Blackhawks), along with three no-hitters and one perfect game. Plus he had the honor of covering the best basketball player ever on a daily basis. In addition to covering numerous teams and events in and around Chicago, hes also an active sports participant in basketball, baseball, golf, tennis, you name it. Hes also a huge movie buff, a frequent traveler and even owns a piece of a local minor league baseball team and a local restaurant.

1) CSNChicago.com: David, first up, you're back in Arizona once again covering the start of spring training for Chicago's baseball teams. Tell us your top 3 hopeful predictions that will have White Sox fans excited for the upcoming campaign -- and three as well for the Cubs.

Schuster: Hope is ever eternal at Spring Training and this year is no different for both our baseball teams. The following are hopeful predictions (maybe even beyond hope) for the Sox & Cubs.

On the south side: 1) Jake Peavy returns to his Cy Young award winning form with no repercussions from his shoulder surgery to win 20 plus games, 2) Paul Konerko & Adam Dunn combine for 90 home runs and 3) the Sox win the World Series.

Meanwhile, on the other side of town: 1) Carlos Zambrano is like a choir boy and wins 20 for the first time, 2) Carlos Marmol saves 45 games and 3) Carlos Pena hits 40 HRs and drives in a 115 runs as the Cubs get back into the playoffs. Like I said, hope is eternal (if not realistic) at this time of the year.

2) CSNChicago.com: As someone who has covered spring training for years, what are your favorite and least favorite elements during your extended stay in sunny AZ?

Schuster: You have to love covering Spring Training if for nothing else the weather. Tell me many other jobs where you get transported from the snow and the cold to 80 degrees and sunny, while reporting on teams that don't even have any losses yet. Plus, all the players are in such good moods this time of the year. Five months later maybe not so much, but they certainly are affable in February.

As for the drawbacks there aren't many, but I certainly get jealous when I see the fans gulping down their beers while catching rays....hey that should be me! And, even though I love baseball, I miss covering hoops. I'm a basketball junkie and Derrick Rose is the best player I have had the pleasure of covering since Michael Jordan. He has really livened the city with his greatness.

3) CSNChicago.com: Your popular ChicagoNow.com Booth Reviews film blog does a solid job of reviewing new and classic movies, without taking yourself or the movies too seriously. Since its Oscar season and you've pretty much seen them all, is The Kings Speech the Best Picture winner this year or do you see a dark horse in The Social Network winning the big prize?

Schuster: In my mind, there is no question that "The King's Speech" was hands down the best movie of the year. I definitely liked "The Social Network" and "The Fighter," but you just get that certain feeling when you walk out of a theater after seeing certain movies and I was hit with that feeling after seeing "The King's Speech." The writing was fabulous and the chemistry between Colin Firth and Geoffrey Rush was outstanding -- both should win acting nods for their portrayals.

4) CSNChicago.com: How is it possible with everything else you have going on that you also own a piece of a minor league baseball team and a restaurant!? Tell us about how you got yourself involved in those endeavors.

Schuster: I got involved as a minor league baseball owner and part owner of a restaurant through associations with close friends. After being on the other side of the ledger in baseball, I kidded Jerry Reinsdorf that I would never question him again when it came to ownership. He laughed at me. As for the restaurant, it's not normally a good investment, but I have faith in the main proprietor (Jeff Shapiro). The restaurant's name is Rural Urban Barbeque in Highland Park and the food is really good. Jeff knows the business inside and out and his cooking and sauces are out of this world.

5) CSNChicago.com: Credit has to be given when its due. Your social media following is off-the-charts impressive. It seems like every time you send out a sentence or two -- on anything -- you immediately get 20-30 replies from your friends and followers. Whats your personal secret and do you think social media outlets such as Facebook and Twitter have leveled off in popularity or are they on the verge of becoming even bigger?

Schuster: I think we have just scratched the surface when it comes to social media outlets. It's truly amazing how effective they are and how all the old time media use them to their advantage. If you work at a radio or TV station or at a newspaper, you have to keep track of various Twitter or Facebook accounts. We constantly are getting stories from both and often get breaking news from these sources.

As for my own page, I love just putting out certain opinions or facts and then having all my followers make comments. Some are intelligent and some are off the wall. But I'm constantly amazed at how many comments I'll get and when it comes to baseball -- Cubs and Sox fans often go at each other. In fact, I can put up quotes from the Gettysburg Address or something so far away from baseball and yet those Cubs and Sox folks will spew their venom towards each other. It blows me away sometimes, but it also tells me of the passion that both teams enjoy from their fandom.

BONUS QUESTIONCSNChicago.com: Any finals words or comments David?

Schuster: I appreciate having the forum here to answer the above 5 Questions and will continue to say that I am truly a lucky guy. I am doing what I have always wanted, which is to cover sports in my hometown. I'm on the front line of history every day and I wouldn't trade that in for anything....except maybe a winning (100 million) Power Ball ticket.

Schuster LINKS

David Schuster sectionblog on WSCRs official web site

Schusters ChicagoNow.com Booth Reviews blog

David Schuster on Facebook

VOTE: Viewers' Choice Game Of The Week

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NBC Sports Chicago

VOTE: Viewers' Choice Game Of The Week

Who wants it more?

We are putting High School Lites, Chicagoland's top prep sports show, in the hands of area football fans in our "Viewers' Choice Game of the Week." Fans will get the chance to pick one game that the @NBCSPreps crew will cover on Friday night. We will send our cameras to the game that gets the most votes; highlights and postgame reaction of that game will appear on that night's "High School Lites" broadcast at 11 p.m. The show also live streams at www.nbcsportschicago.com/watchlive. High School Lites will also have broadcast replays at 7:30 a.m. and 8:30 a.m. the following Saturday. 

Week 9 is “Bubble Week” for many teams fighting to stay on the right side of the postseason bubble. Who moves on? Whose bubble will burst? Will Wauconda advance to the playoffs after finishing 2-7 last year? Or will Grant end their season on a winning note? Schaumburg and Fremd both stand at 4-4. The winner goes to the postseason. The winner stays home for November. Zion-Benton hasn’t been to the playoffs since 2003. A win over Libertyville gets them there. But for the Wildcats, this ‘is’ their playoff game. Who wins in the North Suburban conference? We’ll send our cameras to one of the following:

Grant at Wauconda, 7:15 p.m.

Schaumburg at Fremd, 7:30 p.m.

Libertyville at Zion-Benton, 7:30 p.m.

— Follow @NBCSPreps on Twitter.
— Note the "pinned Tweet" atop the @NBCSPreps feed. Vote for the game you want us to cover.
— Spread the word! 

We will make an announcement on @NBCSPreps just after 4 p.m. Thursday with the official results of which game will be covered. And as a reminder, be sure to follow @NBCSPreps for updates on the "Viewers' Choice Game of the week," along with other high school sports news, scores and highlights this season.

White Sox fans dreaming of Patrick Corbin: His free-agent destination might already be booked

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USA TODAY

White Sox fans dreaming of Patrick Corbin: His free-agent destination might already be booked

For the biggest dreamers among the White Sox faithful, here's how this offseason might be playing out.

Rick Hahn said the team will make some additions to the pitching staff. So for those dreamers, it's a rush to the top of the list of free-agent starting pitchers, right? Why not hook one of the biggest fish in the pond?

The top of that list looks like this: Clayton Kershaw (should he choose to opt out of his deal with the Los Angeles Dodgers and seek a new, more lucrative one), Dallas Keuchel and Patrick Corbin. Some might even have those last two names flipped, with Corbin, coming off an All-Star season with the Arizona Diamondbacks, second only to one of the best to ever throw a baseball.

The White Sox might not be capable of outbidding baseball's biggest spenders, and that's without even mentioning that they might simply not be looking to ink a hurler to a long-term contract. After all, that's what all those talented prospects are for, right? Assembling the rotation of the future? Carlos Rodon, Lucas Giolito and Reynaldo Lopez are all already part of the 2019 staff. Michael Kopech, when he's done recovering from Tommy John surgery, will join them in 2020. And Dylan Cease was just named MLB Pipeline's minor league pitcher of the year. With all that in mind, any offseason additions to the rotation for 2019 might simply be one-year fill-ins.

But fans often like to dream big, and a lot of them have Corbin on their wish list.

That's not surprising when you look at his numbers. He threw 200 innings last season and struck out 246 batters while finishing with a 3.15 ERA, those last two numbers the best of his six-year big league career. He's 29 years old and a long-term deal would figure to have him in the starting rotation as the White Sox plan to shift from rebuilding mode to contention mode.

Just one problem: There's plenty of belief out there that Corbin's destination this winter has already been booked.

This has been a talking point for a while now, as the Yankees tried to bring Corbin to the Bronx via trade last offseason. They're expected to try to do so again, this time via free agency, as they've got a ton of money to spend. Corbin was quoted in the Nightengale story from April saying: "It would definitely be great to play there. I grew up a Yankee fan."

Sorry to burst your bubbles, White Sox fans. But don't blame me. Blame the Yankees, which seems to be becoming a frequent refrain. If Didi Gregorius' elbow injury means Manny Machado ends up in the Bronx this winter, too, White Sox fans might drop the Cubs as Public Enemy No. 1.

The White Sox have enough hurdles to clear in any pursuit of one of the game's top free agents: They have to compete with baseball's traditional big spenders, and they have to try and beat win-now pitches with a pitch of planned — though not yet arrived — long-term success. It's not like that hasn't been a winning battle before, though, as the rebuilding Cubs got Jon Lester to believe in their future and brought him in to help make their transition from rebuild to championship contention.

But throw in the hurdle of a history between a player and another team, and it makes it an even harder job.

The White Sox will be making some additions this offseason, though they might not be the ones fans are dreaming about. But not landing the winter's biggest fish doesn't mean the organization's biggest, most important dream of building a perennial contender on the South Side is going anywhere.