CHICAGO Teams

Jesse Rogers ESPN Staff Writer 

Cubs starters this weekend for first three Cactus League games: Michael Roth, Eddie Butler and Jen-Ho Tseng. Friday-Sunday.

Charles Moynihan ESPN Producer 

Cubs Manager Joe Maddon loves the month of February: "I love the slow dance of Spring Training. You need to treat Spring Training as though your players just came down from Mars. Even though they might be accomplished players, you need to take it back to step one. In the off-season, everything goes to the back of your mind and you need to bring it back to the front."

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Maddon: 'I want Anthony to take care of Anthony first right now' (2:03)
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Michigan State cruises on senior night (1:09)
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Izzo elated over storybook ending to senior night (1:40)
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Izzo gets emotional saying goodbye to his three seniors (2:43)
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Izzo hopes team can protect the ball in second half (0:42)

Jesse Rogers ESPN Staff Writer 

Milwaukee manager Craig Counsell, on the Brewers selling tickets to Cubs/Brewers games to those that live in Wisconsin before allowing Cubs fans from Illinois to purchase: "It seems logical to me, actually. The first opportunity for the tickets will be for Brewers fans. If there are tickets left over, there will be some for Cubs fans."

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Freeman 'faces very long odds' to return to NFL (1:40)

Jesse Rogers ESPN Staff Writer 

Cubs catcher Willson Contreras was fairly defiant in regards to the new mound visit rules. He said if he has to go talk to his pitcher while breaking the 6 visit rule, so be it: "I don't even care. If I have to go (to the mound) again and pay the price for my team I will." He more than intimated he would be willing to risk a fine or even harsher punishment.

Jesse Rogers ESPN Staff Writer 

The Cubs welcomed some kids from Advocate HealthCare today here in Az. They were signed to one day contracts and were very excited.

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Jesse Rogers ESPN Staff Writer 

Watch Joe Maddon discuss the 'low carry' on Darvish's fastball after his first live batting practice session.

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Darvish feeling comfortable with Cubs (2:08)
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Jesse Rogers ESPN Staff Writer 

Watch Yu Darvish discuss his first batting session, facing Cubs hitters.

Jeff Dickerson ESPN Staff Writer 

Here is what Jerrell Freeman posted last year on his official twitter account: "I hate to say I'm sorry again, but I'm sorry. I've been on IR all year and you try and stay out of sight, but sorry for the distraction.I had been lying to friends, family and loved ones when it came to the question of, 'Are you OK?' Knowing my career may be over due to everything that came with the head injury (that's been purposely downplayed by me), memory loss and all, has actually been a bit of a struggle. That being said there's no excuse to cope with any problems by taking any kind of pills. I don't know my future but a big thanks to the Bears and the NFL, if I would have used their programs and services earlier than I did I wouldn't be in this situation. Sorry again for the distraction."

Jeff Dickerson ESPN Staff Writer 

Veteran ILB Jerrell Freeman, who the Bears released on Tuesday, expressed doubt that he would continue playing football after the NFL suspended him again for violating the league's PED policy policy last year. Freeman, who tore a pectoral muscle in Week 1 that landed him on injured reserve, said he was dealing with the after effects of a nasty concussion he also sustained in the regular season opener.

Jeff Dickerson ESPN Staff Writer 

The Bears clear $3 million worth of salary cap space by releasing veteran ILB Jerrell Freeman.