WGN continues to search for a new broadcasting partner for Len Kasper after Bob Brenly left the Cubs’ booth to join the Diamondbacks’ broadcast team last month.
According to Bruce Levine of ESPN Chicago, MLB Network’s Dan Plesac is expected to interview for the gig next week. Gordon Wittenmyer of the Chicago Sun-Times reported last week that Plesac recently signed a five-year extension with MLB Network and didn’t consider himself a candidate, so this news comes a bit of a surprise, but he has apparently had a change of heart about the possibility.
Plesac has been with MLB Network since the network first launched in January of 2009, but previously hosted Cubs pre-game and post-game shows with Comcast SportsNet Chicago from 2005-2008. The three-time All-Star also pitched with the Cubs from 1993-1994.
Plesac isn’t the only ex-Cub under consideration for the job, as former Eric Karros is also expected to interview. Rick Sutcliffe, Todd Hollandsworth and Doug Glanville have all been mentioned as possibilities, though it’s not clear whether they are serious candidates to join Kasper in the booth.
CC Sabathia‘s contract is set to expire this offseason, but for the long-tenured left-hander, nowhere feels more like home than New York. “I want to see this through,” Sabathia told reporters after a devastating Game 7 loss in the ALCS. “This is where I want to play.” Yankees’ GM Brian Cashman spoke warmly of the veteran starter, but would make no public guarantees that he’d return to the team next spring.
Sabathia, 37, just topped off his 17th season in the big leagues and his eighth career postseason run. He went 14-5 in 27 starts and put up a 3.69 ERA, 3.0 BB/9 and 7.3 SO/9 in 148 2/3 innings, good for 1.9 fWAR. He looked solid in the playoffs, too, propelling the team to a much-needed win in Game 5 of the ALDS and returning in the Championship Series with six scoreless innings in Game 3. His season ended on a sour note during Game 7, however. He lasted just 3 1/3 innings against a dynamic Astros’ offense, allowing one run on five hits and three walks and failing to record a single strikeout for the first time in 23 career postseason appearances.
Heading into the 2017 offseason, Sabathia finally arrived at the end of his seven-year, $161 million deal with the Yankees. While he’s repeatedly expressed a desire to keep pitching, despite rumors that his career might be on the rocks following the diagnosis of a troublesome degenerative knee condition, the decision isn’t his alone to make. Brian Cashman will also be seeking an extension with the Yankees this winter, so it’s difficult to say which impending free agents the club will try to retain — and Sabathia’s name isn’t the only one on that list. If it were up to skipper Joe Girardi, who is awaiting a decision on his own future with the organization, the decision would be a no-brainer. From MLB.com’s Bryan Hoch:
CC will always be special to me because of what he stands for and the great player that he is, the great man that he is,” Girardi said. “The wonderful teammate that he is. How he pulls a team together. He’s as good as I’ve ever been around when it comes to a clubhouse guy, a guy that will take the ball when you’re on a losing streak or that you can count on, and knowing that it could be the possible last time.