Ozzie Guillen

UPDATE: Ozzie Guillen released from contract with White Sox, expected to join Marlins


Oh boy.

According to Joe Cowley of the Chicago Sun-Times, Ozzie Guillen is managing his last game with the White Sox tonight. Oh, but that’s not all. He has been told by multiple sources that the White Sox are “in the final stages” of completing a deal to send him to the Marlins.

Of course, Guillen has been linked to the Marlins dating back to failed trade talks last offseason. The White Sox reportedly asked for Logan Morrison at the time, but the price would presumably be much less now that Guillen only has one year left on his contract. He has also given the White Sox little choice but to let him go, at least with his comments in the media.

Entering Monday’s action, Guillen has a 677-617 record (.523) over eight seasons as manager with the White Sox, including a World Series title in 2005.

Cowley writes that there will likely be sweeping changes to the White Sox coaching staff this offseason, but that renowned pitching coach Don Cooper already has a deal to on the table to stay with the organization.

UPDATE: Via Twitter, Ozzie Guillen Jr. has all but confirmed his father’s exit from the organization, writing,” thank you to all the great white sox fans who always showed support. Chicago the best city in the world will always be home.”

UPDATE II: Jon Paul Morosi of FOXSports.com reports that the Marlins conducted managerial interviews today with Nationals third base coach Bo Porter and two in-house candidates (one believed to be current third base/outfield coach Joe Espada), but that they are on the verge of completing a deal for Guillen. The interviews were conducted in order to comply with MLB regulations. The White Sox are expected to receive at least one player in return.

UPDATE III: According to Juan C. Rodriguez of the South Florida Sun-Sentinel, the Marlins are not expected to make an announcement tonight.

UPDATE IV: The White Sox announced following tonight’s game that they have agreed to let Guillen out of his contract. Interesting wording considering what we have heard throughout the night, but the White Sox will receive compensation if he takes another manager job for 2012, which is apparently the case with the Marlins.

The Cubs clinch World Series berth with NLCS Game 6 win

CHICAGO, IL - OCTOBER 22:  The Chicago Cubs celebrate defeating the Los Angeles Dodgers 5-0 in game six of the National League Championship Series to advance to the World Series against the Cleveland Indians at Wrigley Field on October 22, 2016 in Chicago, Illinois.  (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images)
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After 71 years, the Cubs are headed back to the Fall Classic.

The dominance with which Clayton Kershaw attacked the Cubs in Game 2 of the NLCS was nonexistent in Game 6 as the Dodgers’ ace loaded the bases to start the first inning and scattered five extra bases and five runs over five frames. By the time Dave Roberts pulled his starter in the sixth inning, Kershaw was sitting on a Game Score of 33, the lowest he’s mustered since the start of the 2015 season. Only one of his strikes came via curveball, and whether he was having difficulty locating his off-speed stuff or felt more confident with the fastball-slider combo, it was the fewest curves he’d seen land for strikes all year (per David Adler).

Where the Dodgers were able to give Kershaw the edge in Game 2, they found themselves powerless against opposing hurler Kyle Hendricks. Hendricks turned out 7 1/3 scoreless frames with two hits and six strikeouts, preserving the Cubs’ second shutout of the postseason and the first since they bested the Giants in Game 1 of the NLDS. After his 1-0 loss to the Dodgers early in the NLCS, seeing the MLB ERA leader turn out a gem was a relief for the Cubs, especially one as spectacular as an 88-pitch two-hitter.

With Hendricks effectively stymieing the Dodgers’ best attempts to get on base, the Cubs played to their strengths at the plate. Kris Bryant and Ben Zobrist cleared the bases in the first inning for a two-run lead, followed by a Dexter Fowler RBI single in the second. Willson Contreras came through in the fourth inning for the Cubs, lifting an 87 m.p.h. slider to left field for his first home run of October, while Anthony Rizzo hit his second homer of the postseason on a 1-1 fastball in the fifth.

Neither bullpen allowed a single run from the sixth inning onward. Dodgers’ right-hander Kenley Jansen took the ball from Kershaw in the sixth, scattering four strikeouts over three innings and denying the Cubs so much as a single baserunner through the end of the game. Aroldis Chapman, meanwhile, issued just one walk in 1 1/3 scoreless frames, inducing a Yasiel Puig double play to clinch the Cubs’ 17th franchise pennant.

With the win, the Cubs will face off against the Indians in Game 1 of the World Series on Tuesday at 8 PM EDT. And, in case you needed a reminder:

Video: Willson Contreras blasts first postseason home run off of Kershaw

CHICAGO, IL - OCTOBER 22:  Willson Contreras #40 of the Chicago Cubs celebrates after hitting a solo home run in the fourth inning against the Los Angeles Dodgers during game six of the National League Championship Series at Wrigley Field on October 22, 2016 in Chicago, Illinois.  (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
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So much for Clayton Kershaw posing a threat tonight. The Cubs got their knocks in early and often against the Dodgers’ ace during Game 6 of the NLCS, racking up three runs in the first three innings before rookie catcher Willson Contreras unleashed his first postseason home run in the bottom of the fourth inning.

According to MLB.com’s Phil Rogers, Contreras became the 10th Cub to homer in the 2016 playoffs, following big hits by Addison Russell, Anthony Rizzo, Dexter Fowler, Miguel Montero, David Ross, Jake Arrieta, Kris Bryant, Travis Wood, and Javier Baez. Of the ten home run hitters, Contreras joins catchers David Ross and Miguel Montero as yet another backstop capable of driving the long ball (and, less importantly, as another player capable of a sweet, sweet bat flip).

Rizzo, whose last homer was a deep drive to right field off of Los Angeles right-hander Pedro Baez in Game 4 of the NLCS, piled on Kershaw’s five-run outing with another home run in the bottom of the fifth inning. Kershaw called it a night after five frames, and the Cubs currently lead the Dodgers 5-0 in the sixth inning.