Summer is a time for barbecues, beaches and baseball.Although football may be a few months away from taking center-stage, believe itor not Bears fans you do have some offseason entertainment right under yournoses. Thats right, there is a power couple battle brewing here in Chicagobetween quarterback Jay Cutler and his fianc Kristin Cavallari as theysquare-off with linebacker Brian Urlacher and his new girlfriend JennyMcCarthy.Cutler and Cavallari are a hot item and have been sincetheir courtship began almost two years ago. Adding to the sizzle is the newsthat the two are expecting their first child, a baby boy, in the coming months.While they may not be quite as popular as their counterpartsat this very moment, Urlacher and McCarthy are well-seasoned celebrities withstaying power. Rumors of the two dating were confirmed in May, but everyone wantsto know how long the couple will stay together? The 39-year-old McCarthy rose to fame with her 1993 Playboy spread, which in turn led to along and impactful acting career (See BASEketball).Joking aside, McCarthy has received great reviews for herappearances on countless television shows including: Baywatch, Home Improvement,The Drew Caray Show, Just Shoot Me!, My Name is Earl and Two and Half Men. The always-entertaining McCarthy is set to shine as the newhost of Love in the Wild, whichreturns to NBC with a two-hour season premiere Tuesday night at 8 p.m. (CT).Cavallari burst on the scene in MTVs Laguna Beach in 2004 and furthered her career on The Hills. She showed she has some dancemoves as well, with a 2011 appearance on Dancingwith the Stars. Cavallari received areputation as a heel on The Hills,but of course it is unfair to hold that against her in real-life when itsurfaced that almost all of the show was scripted. Motherhood will certainly keep Cavallari busy in theshort-term, but a return to showbiz should never be completely ruled out in2013 and beyond.When we take the debate to the football field, there isreally no comparison. Brian Urlacher is an institution in both the city ofChicago and the NFL. Sure, Jay Cutler is the Bears star quarterback, but hissuccess pales in comparison to the more established Urlacher.Urlacher is an eight-time Pro Bowler at middle linebackerand has accumulated almost 1,300 tackles in 170 games during his 12-year career.He has helped the Bears to multiple division titles, two NFC Championship appearancesand one unsuccessful trip to Super Bowl XLI.Cutler has been selected to just one Pro Bowl (2008), whilethrowing for more than 18,000 yards, 117 touchdowns and 86 interceptions duringhis six-year career. Cutler did help the Bears reach the 2010 NFC Championshipgame, but was unable to stay on the field due to injury, which ended up leadingto a very painful loss to the eventual Super Bowl champion Packers. So what do you think Bears fans? Who wins this Chicago powercouple battle? Is it the up-and-coming Cutler-Cavallari combo or the moreaccomplished Urlacher-McCarthy tandem?
It's Day 2 of the Winter Meetings. USA Today's Bob Nightengale joins Chuck Garfien, Ryan McGuffey and Vinnie Duber.
Nightengale shares his thoughts on what starting pitcher is the right fit (2:00), the message the Grandal signing sends to the rest of the league (6:00), predictions for who the White Sox will sign this week (12:00) and when the Sox window is open (13:30).
Plus, he shares some memories of past Winter Meetings including his favorite cocktail napkin trade and the best late-night stories from past years (16:00).
Listen to the full episode in the embedded player below:
White Sox Talk Podcast
As the budget-conscious Cubs figure out their 2020 payroll, an NL West team has emerged in the race to sign free agent Nicholas Castellanos.
According to The Athletic's Ken Rosenthal (subcription required), a team interested in Castellanos views the Giants as the top-bidder for the outfielder's services.
The Giants recently named Cubs front office assistant Scott Harris as their general manager, so San Francisco has some ties to Castellanos. The Giants 2020 luxury tax payroll is currently projected to be $186 million (per Roster Resource) so they could sign Castellanos without going over MLB's $208 million threshold.
Castellanos was a stellar addition last season after the Cubs acquired him at the trade deadline. He posted a .321/.356/.646 line with 16 home runs and 21 doubles in 51 games. That performance upped the 27-year-old's value entering free agency.
The Cubs are looking to get under the luxury tax threshold to avoid being penalized a second straight season. Signing Castellanos would complicate this, but the Cubs are still pursuing him, as they could potentially sign him and clear payroll in a corresponding move.
But if it turns into a bidding war, the Cubs may find themselves unable to bring Castellanos back.