Cubs

Bears legend Gale Sayers sounds off on Saints bounty scandal

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Bears legend Gale Sayers sounds off on Saints bounty scandal

Bears legend and Hall of Fame running back Gale Sayers was having a good conversation with Comcast SportsNets David Kaplan on Wednesday for a future episode in Inside Look, when the talk brushed up against the bounty related suspensions for New Orleans Saints coaches and players.

Sayers could barely control his fury:

Those fools should never get a chance to play or coach in the game again. Never! Sayers raged. How can you do that? I have never had anyone say, Im going to break your arm.

They should never go out and play this game again, go out and coach this game again.

Kap mentioned that there are those who believe the offenders should go to jail for what they did.

Damn right they should, Sayers declared, voice trembling. Yes, they should.

I dont know about the jail time. But having watched this game for some time, including when Gale was playing with the king of on-field fury, Dick Butkus, if the NFL caves on the suspensions, shame on Roger Goodell and the discipline administrators.

Football is a violent game. Adding to its violence with an intent to injure is so far beyond stupid that, as Gale did, you sputter trying to find words for it.

Sean Payton knew, condoned, covered up and lied about the program on his watch. He is lucky to have just a one-year suspension. Jonathan Vilma got off with an eight-game ban.

It matters not even a little bit that this is hardly the first time or place a bounty system was in place. That excuses nothing.

A flu epidemic doesnt mean you stop trying to stamp out the disease just because its everywhere. And players who can see no further than the end of a play and in any way rationalize intentional injury to someone are a disease.

One commentator suggested that players Vilma, Anthony Hargrove and Scott Fujita had to do what their coaches like Gregg Williams were directing.

Bull. Fujita and Vilma were not going to lose starting jobs if they didnt go along with the program. Williams was stupid in more than a few ways but there is absolutely no way a coach benches best players because they dont injure people.

The players were being incented to injure. They were not being penalized for not injuring.

And anybody who has dealt with an idiot for a supervisor knows what you do in those situations: You say, Gotcha, boss and then go out and do it the way you know it should be done.

Good call, Gale.

Be sure to watch the video above.

Maddon gets funky with bullpen, calls catcher Chris Gimenez to mound

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Maddon gets funky with bullpen, calls catcher Chris Gimenez to mound

The Cubs continued their recent struggles, suffering their third straight loss to the Cincinnati Reds. 

But the game was not without it's fair share of drama. The matchup was a back-and-forth affair, up until the Reds blew the game wide-open in the bottom of the third inning. This included a grand slam by Reds pitcher Anthony DeSclafani, the first home run of his career.

Cubs manager Joe Maddon turned to the bullpen following Cincinnati's third inning explosion, and things did not get much better from there.

With the Cubs down six runs in the bottom of the eight inning, Maddon brought in catcher Chris Gimenez to pitch. 

This was not new territory for Gimenez, who despite being a catcher, now has 10 MLB pitching appearances to his name. 

Down six runs, Gimenez didn't have a lot to lose. But he got careless with a four-seam fastball in the zone that Reds first basemen Joey Votto homered for his eighth of the year.

Gimenez had a career ERA of 8.00 before Saturday's appearance, and he certainly didn't do much to help lower that figure.

According to ESPN's Jesse Rogers: "Including one today, Cubs relievers have allowed 41.1 percent of inherited runners to score in June, sixth most in the NL." 

A tired bullpen is certainly cause for concern for the Cubs, who are locked into a battle in the NL Central with the Brewers and Cardinals. Maddon was surely hoping to keep his bullpen arms fresh with the move, seeing as the game was already out of reach. 

So yes, the game did end in a 11-2 win for the Reds. But with a grand-slam by a pitcher—on his first career HR no less—and four-seam fastballs from a catcher, Cubs baseball always keep things interesting. 

Tim Anderson celebrated his birthday in style

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USA TODAY

Tim Anderson celebrated his birthday in style

Tim Anderson turned 24 on Saturday and celebrated the occasion with a bang.

Anderson smashed a three-run home run in the first inning against the A's. It was actually his first swing on his birthday. Anderson took the first two pitches before launching the 1-1 pitch over the right field fence.

That home run, Anderson's 13th of the year, gave the White Sox a 5-0 lead. Things took an ugly turn later in the game with Oakland winning 7-6. Dylan Covey left in the fifth with a hip injury, which manager Rick Renteria said will be evaluated tomorrow to determine the severity of the injury.

Anderson finished 2-for-4 on his birthday. He later added a single, a stolen base and a run in the sixth inning.

Anderon's power surge this year has him on pace to blow past his 17 homers from a year ago. He is four shy of last year's total and has done so in just under half as many plate appearances.