Rizzo's journey to Wrigley


Rizzo's journey to Wrigley

Anthony Rizzo will make his debut with the Cubs Tuesday at Wrigley Field. As Cubs fans will get their first look at the top prospect, let's take a look back at the journey Rizzo has had in 2012.

Rizzo ended 2011 in a sort of no-man's-land, as the Padres had just acquired first baseman Yonder Alonso and Rizzo's path to the big leagues was blocked. That prompted Bill Center, a Padres beat writer, to explain in a chat that he felt Chicago was the ultimate destination for Rizzo.

That turned out to be correct, as the Cubs dealt Andrew Cashner and minor-league outfielder Kyung-Min Na to the Padres for Rizzo and right-hander Zach Cates during the first week of 2012.

At the time, we wondered whether Rizzo was worth giving up Cashner, and Rizzo tweeted his reaction to the trade. Cubs GM Jed Hoyer said after the trade that Bryan LaHair would start the season as the first baseman, with Rizzo in Triple-A.

CSN analyst and 12-year MLB veteran Todd Hollandsworth weighed in on the Rizzo deal, calling it a "very good trade." Rizzo's arrival pushed Brett Jackson immediately as the Cubs' top prospect.

As the slugger became a part of the Cubs' roster, the stories came fast and furious:

Jan. 14: Rizzo looking forward to his shot whenever he gets it

Jan. 21: Rizzo rated No. 1 first base prospect

Jan. 25: Cubs net three prospects in MLB's Top 100

Feb. 1: Baseball America's version of the Cubs' top prospects

Feb. 14: Jackson, Rizzo among impact rookies of '12

Feb. 16: Rizzo on being traded twice in brief career

Feb. 28: Rizzo, Vitters have something to prove with Cubs

Feb. 29: Could both LaHair and Rizzo find way into Cubs lineup?

Mar. 1: Cubs should wait on Jackson, Rizzo

Mar. 8: The search for the elusive lefty power bat

Mar. 23: Jackson and Rizzo won't be down for long

April 7: Cubs keeping their eyes on Jackson, Rizzo

April 24: Cubs minor-league roundup -- Week 3

April 30: Kaplan: Cubs shouldn't rush prospects

May 2: Rizzo named Cubs' minor-league player of the month

May 7: Cardenas begins youth movement from Triple-A Iowa

May 9: Kaplan: Cubs minor league report

May 16: Cubs minor league update: Rizzo still raking

May 20: The decision: Rizzo talks about to heat up for Cubs

May 22: Kaplan: No need to rush Rizzo

May 22: Rizzo continues to impress in Iowa

May 22: Cubs minor league update: Jackson still struggling

May 24: Anthony Rizzo is getting ready for takeoff

May 27: Keep waiting: Cubs not calling up Rizzo just yet

May 28: Hoyer knows Rizzo can't be the savior for Cubs

May 30: This time, Cubs think Rizzo can live up to the hype

June 1: Cubs keeping Rizzo in holding pattern

June 4: Don't look for Rizzo when Cubs play interleague

June 7: Minor league updates on Rizzo, Jackson, Jokisch

June 8: Rizzo, Vitters aren't options for Cubs yet

June 12: With Rizzo on horizon, Rowson is choice for next generation

June 12: Rizzo leaves Tuesday's game with leg injury

June 14: Cubs minor-league roundup

June 18: Cubs clearing the path for Anthony Rizzo

June 20: Soriano will welcome Rizzo with open arms

June 20: Cubs minor league round-up: Rizzo still hot

June 20: What is Rizzo getting himself into?

June 22: Sveum: No Rizzo this weekend in Arizona

June 23: Cubs notes: Still no Rizzo, but talk of his arrival continues

June 24: Cubs limp home knowing help is on the way

June 24: Kap: Rizzo to debut Tuesday?

June 25: The time is now for Cubs, Rizzo

June 25: Why did Rizzo struggle in San Diego?

June 25: Who is Anthony Rizzo?

June 25: Cubs final lineup card before Rizzo era begins

June 26: ???

Stay tuned. There will be plenty more to come.

On a scale of 1-10, Tarik Cohen says his dangerous level is 12

USA Today

On a scale of 1-10, Tarik Cohen says his dangerous level is 12

Don't be fooled by Tarik Cohen's height. He has towering confidence and he's setting up to have a big role in coach Matt Nagy's offense in 2018.

“On a scale of 1-10, the dangerous level is probably 12,” Cohen said Thursday at Halas Hall about the impact he can have in the Bears' new system. “Because in backyard football, it’s really anything goes, and it’s really whoever gets tired first, that’s who’s going to lose. I’m running around pretty good out here, so I feel like I’m doing a good job.”

Cohen proved last season he can thrive in space. He made an impact as a runner, receiver and return man and will have a chance at an even bigger workload this fall, assuming he can handle it.

With Jordan Howard established as the starting running back, Cohen knows his touches will come in a variety of ways.

“It might not necessarily be rushes,” he said. “But it’s going to be all over the field, and that’s what I like to do. Any way I can get the ball or make a play for my team, that’s what I’m looking forward to doing.”

Cohen averaged 4.3 yards-per-carry as a rookie and led all NFL running backs in the percentage of carries that went for at least 15 yards. He's a big play waiting to happen.

Howard can't get too comfortable in his first-team role. He's a few bad series from Cohen unseating him as the starter and becoming the most valuable weapon in Nagy's offense. The first-year coach is already having trouble hiding his excitement over Cohen, an emotion that will only grow once training camp gets underway.

Summer of Sammy: Sosa's 10th, 11th homers in 1998

Summer of Sammy: Sosa's 10th, 11th 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.

Sosa is heating up, but even a red-hot Sosa doesn't automatically equal wins for the Cubs.

Slammin' Sammy notched his first multi-homer game in 1998 in a 9-5 loss to Kevin Millwood and the Atlanta Braves. Sosa drove in 4 of the Cubs' 5 runs on a solo shot in the 4th inning and a three-run shot in the 8th. 

Sosa tallied 830 feet of homers in the game, with his first blast going 410 feet and the second shot measured at 420 feet.

The big game bumped Sosa's overall season slash line to .337/.411/.551 (.962 OPS) with 11 homers and 35 RBI.

Fun fact: Mickey Morandini hit second for the Cubs in this game and went 4-for-4, but somehow only scored one run despite hitting just in front of Sosa all game. That's because Morandini was caught stealing to end the 3rd inning, leaving Sosa to lead off the 4th inning with a solo blast.