Bob Brenly expects to re-sign as Cubs announcer despite Diamondbacks speculation


Mark Grace taking an indefinite leave of absence as Arizona’s television analyst following a DUI arrest has led to some speculation that former Diamondbacks manager Bob Brenly could take the job when his contract with the Cubs expires at the end of this season.

Paul Sullivan of the Chicago Tribune asked about that possibility and Brenly pretty clearly shot it down, calling it “rain delay filler” and adding that “I have every confidence that we’ll get something done” to remain with the Cubs.

Brenly and play-by-play man Len Kasper are among the best television duos in baseball and announcing Cubs games is certainly a much higher-profile (and presumably higher-paid) gig than doing the same for the Diamondbacks. Brenly has been the Cubs’ analyst since replacing Steve Stone in 2005 and is currently finishing up a four-year contract.

Chris Sale will start on Opening Day for Red Sox

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No surprise here: Chris Sale will start on Opening Day for the Red Sox, Pete Abraham of The Boston Globe reports. The Red Sox open the season on March 29 in Tampa Bay against the Rays. Sale will oppose Chris Archer.

Sale, 28, is the fifth different Opening Day starter the Red Sox have had in as many years, preceded by Rick Porcello, David Price, Clay Buchholz, and Jon Lester. Sale started on Opening Day for the White Sox in 2013, ’14, and ’16.

Sale finished second in AL Cy Young Award balloting last year and finished ninth for AL MVP. He went 17-8 with a 2.90 ERA and a 308/43 K/BB ratio in 214 1/3 innings. Sale and Clayton Kershaw (2015) are the only pitchers to strike out 300 or more batters in a season dating back to 2003.