Cubs

Sixers limp into playoffs

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Sixers limp into playoffs

After taking control of the Atlantic Division throughout the beginning of the season, the Sixers crumpled after the All Star break, dropping into the Eastern Division's final seed as they head into the playoffs.

Even though Derrick Rose is still searching to regain his previous form, will the Bulls face an easy first round during the postseason?

StatsPre-All Star Break
Post-All Star Break
W-L20-1415-17PPG94.093.2Opponents' PPG
87.591.4

Cubs continue behind-the-scenes makeover by hiring new scouting director

Cubs continue behind-the-scenes makeover by hiring new scouting director

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. - The Cubs are close to the point of the offseason where their sole focus will be on the roster.

As the final coaching staff comes together, the organization also announced their scouting director Wednesday, adding Dan Kantrovitz as the VP of scouting.

Kantrovitz, 41, spent the last five seasons as the assistant general manager to Billy Beane with the Oakland A's and previously served as the director of scouting for the St. Louis Cardinals for three seasons (2012-14). He is a Brown University graduate and also got his Master's Degree at Harvard.

Kantrovitz is a St. Louis native and was reportedly discussing a return to the Cardinals this winter before he took the job with the Cubs:

He was part of the Cardinals scouting department that drafted Jack Flaherty 34th overall in 2014, plus current Cubs reliever Rowan Wick in the ninth round (300th overall) in 2012 and has other successful high picks on his resume (Michael Wacha, Stephen Piscotty, Luke Weaver).

"We're really excited to be able to bring Danny Kantroviz on board," Theo Epstein said Wednesday at the MLB GM Meetings. "To be able to hire somebody to run our drafts who's already held that position and already run successful drafts in the past, it's a unique opportunity. Guys don't usually go back once they reach the assistant GM level. But in Dan's case, he has just discovered that his passion is running the draft.

"It really fits the exact profile we're looking for. He can scout - he goes out and sees 200 players a year when he's running the draft - and he can really relate very well to scouts and he's also got experience building advanced analytical models and combining both those worlds in a really effective manner. I think he fills a big void for us and look forward to working with him for years to come."

Epstein also called the Kantrovitz hire a "best case scenario" for the Cubs as they reshape their front office infrastructure. In September, Epstein moved Jason McLeod from head of scouting and player development (the position he held since coming over to the Cubs after the 2011 season) into a special assistant role in the big-league front office and shook up the player development department.

They wanted a fresh perspective and new insight into the draft and developing players given the organization's inability to produce homegrown pitchers in the eight years under Epstein's reign. Kantrovitz is the guy they've chosen to now lead the scouting department and the hope is he's able to find more success in the draft.

"Dan is as qualified as maybe anyone out there in baseball to do [balance all the information on draft day] since he has scouted extensively and is on the road the entire draft season seeing players and has done so for many years," Epstein said. "He also is one of the top quants [quantitative analyst] in the game as well. Builds his own models and understands it on a granular level - not just to the R & D department, but being a part of it and not just relating to scouts but being one. He brings a really unique skillset and set of experiences to the position."

That's another big hire to check off the list for the Cubs as the offseason starts to heat up. Epstein and Co. can now turn their attention to fine-tuning the roster to ensure the whole is greater than the sum of the parts in 2020. 

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Bears Injury Report: David Montgomery limited in practice, Danny Trevathan still DNP

Bears Injury Report: David Montgomery limited in practice, Danny Trevathan still DNP

The Bears released their latest injury report this Wednesday, with some more notable names added to the list, including running back David Montgomery and tight end Trey Burton.

In a new development, David Montgomery had limited participation in Wednesday’s practice due to an ankle injury. The cause or severity of the injury is unknown at this time.

Trey Burton DNP in Wednesday’s practice due to a calf injury he suffered during Sunday’s matchup against the Lions. He was previously on the injured list in October due to a groin injury, becoming a full participant in practice during Week 10.

Danny Trevathan is still unable to participate in practice after leaving Week 10’s game during the first quarter due to a gruesome elbow injury. There has yet to be an official update from the Bears on the severity of Trevathan’s injury, but Nagy didn’t seem particularly optimistic on during Monday’s press conference following the game, admitting Trevathan could potentially join Akiem Hicks on IR depending on the results of his MRI.

Isaiah Irving also DNP due to a quad injury. He has been on the injured list since Week 9. 

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