Cubs

Bears not OK with Allen's hit on Louis

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Bears not OK with Allen's hit on Louis

When Minnesota defensive end Jared Allen leveled guard Lance Louis with a blindside hit on which Allen launched himself at Louis head, Allen wasnt penalized, although he may be fined by the NFL.

Im sure the league will look at it and give another opinion about what they think, coach Lovie Smith said on Monday.

Whatever the punishment, the Bears were critical of Allen and the hit that resulted in a knee injury to the young guard. They didnt use the word dirty but it was there between the lines.

I saw the play, said defensive end Israel Idonije. It wasnt necessary. There have been a number of rules put in the game now that you cant hit a defenseless player. Lance is clearly, his vision is downfield. Allen hits him on his blind side.

At that point of the game, he could have easily shoulder to shoulder, he could have laid him out with just using his hands to his chest. Lot of options. Lance is quick. Hes fast. But its not a situation where he was just blazing and Allen had to lay him out to make a saving play. He hit him that way because he chose to hit him that way.

Typically players and coaches do not publicly criticize opponents for their hits, say, by an Ndamukong Suh on Jay Cutler. The blows are dismissed as part of the game.

Not this one.

Did Smith view the hit as unnecessary?

Unnecessary? Yes. I did, Smith said. Jared Allen plays the game a certain way, a good player in our league. I think there are some plays when you look at them again, you say, Hey, we could have done without that.

I think our game could do without that play. We have an injured player right now based on it. I think he could have gotten blocked a little bit differently, but thats about all I can probably say about it.

Summer of Sammy: Sosa's 12th + 13th homers in 1998

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AP

Summer of Sammy: Sosa's 12th + 13th homers in 1998

It's the 20th anniversary of the Summer of Sammy, when Sosa and Mark McGwire went toe-to-toe in one of the most exciting seasons in American sports history chasing after Roger Maris' home run record. All year, we're going to go homer-by-homer on Sosa's 66 longballs, with highlights and info about each. Enjoy.

An off-day did nothing to slow down the 1998 National League MVP as Sosa collected his second straight 2-homer game May 27 of that season.

He went deep in the eighth and ninth innings of a Cubs' 10-5 loss to the Philadelphia Phillies at Wrigley Field, driving in 3 runs. 

The first homer - off Darrin Winston - was an absolute blast, traveling an estimated 460 feet. The second shot was tame in comparison with only 400 feet as a recorded distance.

In a matter of two games, Sosa raised his season OPS from .930 to .988 and his slugging percentage from .521 to .577 thanks to a pair of 2-homer contests.

Fun fact: Doug Glanville - former Cubs outfielder and current NBC Sports Chicago analyst - was the Phillies leadoff hitter that day in 1998, collecting three hits and scoring a pair of runs.

Yu Darvish back on the DL for Cubs with triceps tendinitis

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USA TODAY

Yu Darvish back on the DL for Cubs with triceps tendinitis

Yu Darvish now has more trips to the disabled list in a Cubs uniform than wins.

The Cubs place their 31-year-old right-handed pitcher on the DL Saturday evening with right triceps tendinitis. The move is retroactive to May 23, so he may only have to miss one turn through the rotation.

In a corresponding move, Randy Rosario was recalled from Triple-A Iowa to provide Joe Maddon with another arm in the bullpen. Tyler Chatwood will start Sunday in Darvish's place.

Thanks to two off-days on the schedule last week, the Cubs should be fine with their rotation for a little while. Jon Lester could go on regular rest Monday, but the Cubs would need to make a decision for Tuesday given Kyle Hendricks just threw Friday afternoon.

That decision could mean Mike Montgomery moving from the bullpen to the rotation for a spot start, or it could be the promotion of top prospect Adbert Alzolay from Triple-A Iowa.

Either way, this is more bad news for Darvish, who has had a rough go of it since he signed a six-year, $126 million deal with the Cubs in February.

Between issues with the weather, the concern of arm cramps in his debut in Miami, leg cramps in Atlanta, a trip to the disabled list for the flu, trouble making it out of the fifth inning and now triceps tendinitis, it's been a forgettable two months for Darvish.

He is 1-3 with a 4.95 ERA, 1.43 WHIP and 49 strikeouts in 40 innings with the Cubs.

Over the course of 139 career starts, Darvish is 57-45 with a 3.49 ERA, 1.19 WHIP and has averaged 11 strikeouts per nine innings.