Cubs

NBA star pleads guilty to gun, alcohol charges

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NBA star pleads guilty to gun, alcohol charges

From Comcast SportsNet
PONTIAC, Mich. (AP) -- Prosecutors on Tuesday dropped a felony gun charge against Detroit Pistons center Ben Wallace, who pleaded guilty to misdemeanor charges of drunken driving and possessing a firearm while under the influence of alcohol. Wallace had no prior record and was cooperative with police when his Cadillac Escalade was stopped Sept. 24 in Oakland County's Bloomfield Township, assistant prosecutor Robert Novy said in explaining the reasons for the plea deal. A breath test showed Wallace's blood-alcohol level was 0.14 percent, above Michigan's legal limit of 0.08 percent. Police found an unloaded pistol registered to his wife in a backpack. "He's certainly not happy he got himself in that situation," defense attorney Steve Fishman said outside court. Wallace was accused of carrying a concealed weapon but the charge was dropped. He didn't speak in court except to acknowledge his fault in the incident. "Had you had too much to drink?" Fishman asked. "Yes," Wallace replied. The maximum penalty is 93 days in jail, but Fishman expects probation and community service, perhaps basketball camps for poor kids in Pontiac, when Wallace returns to Judge Shalina Kumar's court on Dec. 13. "I can't imagine Judge Kumar would send him to jail. ... The police treated him fairly. The prosecutor treated him fairly. We're confident the judge will treat him fairly," Fishman told reporters. Wallace left court without commenting. He has played for five NBA teams since 1996.

MLB, MLBPA, and Sony Interactive announce multi-year extension of partnership

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USA TODAY

MLB, MLBPA, and Sony Interactive announce multi-year extension of partnership

On Monday it was officially announced in a joint statement that the MLB, MLBPA, San Diego Studio, and Sony Interactive had agreed to a multi-year extension on their partnership to create the popular, officially licensed MLB video game, MLB The Show.

This year's upcoming edition of MLB The Show, MLB The Show 20, features Cubs superstar shortstop on the cover. The award-winning game will be entering a pivotal year as MLB The Show 20 will be the 15th anniversary of the franchise. Among the other big announcements from Sony Interactive was that the Sony exclusive title will be making its way to other console platforms soon, as early as 2021. 

The Baez-led MLB The Show 20 will feature a variety of specific gameplay features and promotions to commemorate the 15th anniversary of the beloved MLB video game franchise. 

Potential Cubs target Shogo Akiyama is reportedly in the U.S. during the winter meetings

Potential Cubs target Shogo Akiyama is reportedly in the U.S. during the winter meetings

The Cubs could use a leadoff hitter and a center fielder. One player who can fill both of those holes is available is looking to sign soon.

Japanese center fielder Shogo Akiyama is in the U.S. with his agent, according to Sports Nippon, while the winter meetings take place in San Diego.

Akiyama is a center field option when center field options are limited this offseason. Brett Gardner is a free agent, but the 36-year-old wouldn’t be easy to pry away from his only professional organization.

Akiyama is 31 and saw a dropoff in his numbers in Japan last season, but still had a .392 on-base percentage with 20 home runs in 143 games.

Albert Almora’s struggles last season left the Cubs with uncertainty in center going forward. That saw Jason Heyward spending some time in center with Kyle Schwarber and Nicholas Castellanos on the corners. That’s not a pretty defensive outfield. Meanwhile, Akiyama has two Golden Glove awards in Japan.

He would also bring on-base skills and speed to a Cubs lineup that has resorted to having power hitter Anthony Rizzo play leadoff at times.

Akiyama would also likely not be an expensive option, which is key for a Cubs team reportedly looking to get under the luxury tax this offseason.

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