Cubs

In award-winning week, three Cubs appear in NL MVP voting

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In award-winning week, three Cubs appear in NL MVP voting

A banner week for the Cubs ended with three of their cornerstone pieces showing up in the National League MVP voting, yet another sign of the franchise’s resurgence.

As expected, Bryce Harper became the unanimous winner when the Baseball Writers’ Association of America announced the results on Thursday, the Washington Nationals outfielder going 30-for-30 in first-place votes.

[MORE CUBS: How Cubs plan to rebuild their bullpen for next October]

Anthony Rizzo – the All-Star first baseman who put up 31 homers and 101 RBI while emerging as a leader for a young Cubs team – came in fourth with 162 points.

Jake Arrieta – who won the Cy Young Award on Wednesday – got five second-place votes and finished sixth with 134 points.

Kris Bryant – the unanimous Rookie of the Year winner and an All-Star third baseman during his age-23 season – placed 11th with 34 points.

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Joe Maddon – the ringleader of this circus – is now a three-time Manager of the Year after Tuesday’s BBWAA announcement.

This happens when a team wins 97 games and finishes with the third-best record in baseball. Add it all up and there will be sky-high expectations when pitchers and catchers report to Mesa, Arizona, in February.

Baseball Night in Chicago Podcast: The state of the Sox and Darvish duels Kap

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USA TODAY

Baseball Night in Chicago Podcast: The state of the Sox and Darvish duels Kap

Leila Rahimi, Scott Podsednik, and Doug Glanville cover everything Chicago baseball in a jam-packed show. First, Jason Benetti joins the show to reminisce about his broadcast with Bill Walton, Lucas Giolito's dominance and Eloy Jimenez's hip issue. Then, the trio discusses Yoan Moncada's return, the Cubs building momentum after a sweep of the Giants, Yu Darvish's back-and-forth with David Kaplan, and where the White Sox rebuild stands entering the final 6 weeks of 2019.

Listen to the full podcast here or via the embedded player below:

Sports Talk Live Podcast: Do the Cubs have an 'ace' in their rotation?

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USA TODAY

Sports Talk Live Podcast: Do the Cubs have an 'ace' in their rotation?

David Haugh, Patrick Finley and Jordan Bernfield join Kap on the panel.

0:00 - A night after winning a 12-11 slugfest, Kyle Hendricks and 3 relievers combine for a 1-0 shutout as the winning streak goes to 5.

4:00 - Kap recounts his Twitter discussion with Yu Darvish after Wednesday night's game.

10:00 - Right now, who's the Cubs ace? The guys debate.

11:30 - Luis Robert is killing it in Charlotte. Will he be a September callup?

16:00 - Matt Nagy defends the Bears' kicker search after a critical Sports Illustrated article.

Listen to the full podcast here or via the embedded player below: