Sammy Sosa hit 545 of his 609 career home runs as a Cub, won an MVP as a Cub in 1998 and was named to a total of seven All-Star games. All as a Cub.
Now the organization seemingly wants little to do with him, and he opened up to ChicagoMag.com on Monday about how it has affected his life after baseball.
Sosa’s name appears on an engraved stone outside of Wrigley Field and there is a flag on the roof of the stadium that pays tribute to the slugger’s record-breaking 66 home runs from 1998.
But Sosa would like his number retired, along with the other Cubs greats, and it’s currently being used by rookie outfielder Tyler Colvin.
“That number should be untouchable because of the things that I did for
that organization,” Sosa said. “That right there shows me that they
don’t care about me, and they don’t want to have a good relationship
The steroid era tainted the legacy of many of the last decade’s stars, but some have found a way to hug it out and be re-embraced. Mark McGwire owned up to using performance-enhancers this offseason in a teary interview with MLB Network’s Bob Costas and now he is serving as the hitting coach of the Cardinals. Jason Giambi apologized for his mistakes in 2005 and sends the Coors Field crowd into an uproar when he pinch-hits now in Colorado. Andy Pettitte has moved on, and is going to play a major role in the Yankees’ quest for a 28th World Series this October.
The path to forgiveness must start with an apology, and Sosa has yet to acknowledge that he deceived the Wrigley Field faithful in the 90s and early 2000s. He must come clean or the current feelings in Chicago and around the game of baseball are doubtful to change.
The Red Sox plated five runs in the top of the eighth inning to put Game 3 of the ALCS out of the reach, taking an 8-2 victory over the Astros on Tuesday night in Houston. Four of those eighth-inning runs came on a grand slam to right field by Jackie Bradley, Jr. off of reliever Roberto Osuna, turning their two-run deficit into a back-breaking six-run deficit.
Both teams traded blows in the first inning, with the Red Sox plating two runs on a J.D. Martinez double and a Xander Bogaerts ground out against starter Dallas Keuchel. The Astros got a run back in the bottom half against starter Nathan Eovaldi when Marwin González brought home Jose Altuvé with a single.
Keuchel settled down from there. He ultimately gave up the two runs on four hits with a pair of walks and no strikeouts across five innings. Eovaldi wouldn’t give up another run until the fifth, when Alex Bregman doubled home Altuve. Eovaldi yielded the two runs on six hits with two walks and four strikeouts in six innings.
Steve Pearce, added to the lineup because of the left-handed Keuchel, smashed a solo home run down the left field line in the sixth against right-handed reliever Joe Smith, breaking the 2-2 tie. Two innings later, all hell broke loose against Osuna. Osuna got Martinez to fly out for the first out, allowed a single to Bogaerts, then got the second out when Pearce gorunded out to third base. Rafael Devers kept the inning alive with a single. Osuna loaded the bases by hitting Brock Holt with an 89 MPH slider, then forced in a run when he hit Mitch Moreland with a 96 MPH fastball. Bradley came up and worked a 1-1 count before depositing a 94 MPH fastball into the right field seats to drastically create space between the Red Sox and Astros.
In the bottom of the eighth, with a healthy five-run cushion, Matt Barnes and Joe Kelly combined to keep the Astros off the board. Eduardo Rodríguez got the ball to start the ninth with a pair of lefties slated to bat. Tyler White pinch-hit for Brian McCann but struck out. Evan Gattis then pinch-hit for Tony Kemp and grounded out. Rodríguez cleaned out the inning by striking out George Springer, ending the game in an 8-2 victory for the Red Sox.
The Red Sox will take their 2-1 series lead into Houston on Wednesday night. Rick Porcello will oppose Charlie Morton for an 8:39 PM ET start. A Red Sox win tomorrow would bring them one win away from returning to the World Series for the first time since 2013 and it would leave the defending champion Astros one loss away from elimination.