Report: Starlin Castro accused of sexual assault

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Wow: WBBM Newsradio in Chicago is reporting that Cubs shortstop Starlin Castro has been accused of sexually assaulting a Chicago woman last September.  No charges have been filed and he has not been arrested, but he is wanted for questioning.

WBBM has obtained a police report — heavily redacted — that says Castro took to woman to his apartment after a night of drinking. The woman blacked out, the report says, and when she awoke, Castro was assaulting her.  CBS Chicago.com summarizes the report thusly:

It says that when she woke up she screamed and yelled at her alleged attacker, and left the apartment at about 5:30 a.m. getting a ride home from her friend. It would be 12 hours before the alleged victim would go to a hospital, and police would become involved.

By then, it is believed that Castro was on a plane, heading home to the Dominican Republic for the off-season.

He has not been back to the United States since then. His agent, Paul Kinzer, declined to comment as have the Cubs.

We’re going to be hearing more about this, obviously. Updates as they occur.

UPDATE:  Attorneys for Castro have released a statement saying that they believe the allegations to be baseless.

Yasmani Grandal signs a four-year, $73 million deal with the White Sox

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The first truly big free agent signing of the offseason has gone down: the Chicago White Sox just announced that they have signed catcher Yasmani Grandal to a four-year, $73 million deal.

Grandal, 31, was the best catcher available in free agency. He is coming off a fine year with the Milwaukee Brewers, with whom he had to settle for a one-year pact in 2019. He hit .246/.380/.468 with 28 homers and 77 driven in. It was his fourth straight season with 20+ homers. While his catching has been criticized due to some high-profile mistakes in the postseason, the two-time All-Star once again proved himself to be one of the best pitch-framers in the game if not the best. Between the bat and the glove he has a claim to being one of the best all-around catchers in baseball.

The signing leaves open the question of what happens to James McCann, who was himself an All-Star this year. It’s not that hard a question, of course, as Grandal is a far superior catcher to McCann in every respect. The Sox could make McCann a backup. Alternatively, they could try to trade him to fill other holes on the roster.

The White Sox finished 72-89 in 2019 but are showing signs of coming out of rebuilding mode and into contention mode. This signing pushes them a big step into that direction.