Epstein spotted in Chicago . . . or was he?


Epstein spotted in Chicago . . . or was he?

A Cubs fan insists he saw, and spoke to, Theo Epstein at a Chicago Starbucks on Saturday morning, and also said Epstein was driven away in a SUV toward the direction of Wrigley Field.

Noah Pinzur told the Chicago Tribune that Epstein, or someone who looks exactly like him, got out of an SUV in which he was a passenger at a Starbucks in Lincoln Park in Chicago. Pinzur said he approached him and asked if he was Theo Epstein. "No," was the reply. "I get that a lot."

Pinzur then said the man asked him, "Who is Theo Epstein?" Pinzur's reply was: "He's the guy who may become general manager of the Cubs, or at least we hope."

The Epstein lookalike then brought his drink order back to the SUV, handed it to a female companion who was also in the car, and were driven north on Racine Avenue, "in the direction of Wrigley Field," according to Pinzur.

Pinzur, who had his laptop with him, said he then googled "Theo Epstein" and "Theo Epstein's wife" and was convinced that the woman in the SUV was Marie Whitney, who is Epstein's wife.

"It was Theo, all right," Pinzur told the Tribune. "I'm 99.9 percent sure."

Sources say the Red Sox have granted permission for the Cubs to speak to Epstein about their vacant general manager's job, though the Sox have refused to confirm that publicly.

Pedroia (knee) out of lineup again after leaving game early Thursday

Pedroia (knee) out of lineup again after leaving game early Thursday

Dustin Pedroia is out of the lineup again tonight after leaving the Red Sox game Thursday night with knee pain in the fifth inning.

Josh Rutledge will start at second base as the Sox open a three-game series with the Seattle Mariners at Fenway Park.  

The weather and sloppy field conditions were a factor in John Farrell deciding to get Pedroia out of the game Thursday and conditions haven’t improved significantly Friday. 

Pedroia (.288, two homers, 21 RBI) had surgery on that knee in October. It's the same leg that was hurt when Manny Machado slid into Pedroia at second base in April, the slide that sparked the plunking war between the Orioles and Red Sox.

The full lineups: 

Jean Segura SS
Guillermo Heredia CF
Robinson Canó 2B
Nelson Cruz DH
Kyle Seager 3B
Danny Valencia 1B
Taylor Motter LF
Ben Gamel RF
Mike Zunino C

Yovanni Gallardo RHP

Mookie Betts RF
Andrew Benintendi LF
Xander Bogaerts SS
Hanley Ramirez DH
Mitch Moreland 1B
Josh Rutledge 2B
Jackie Bradley Jr CF
Christian Vazquez C
Deven Marrero 3B

Eduardo Rodriguez LHP


Price on his return to Red Sox: ’There’s not a better feeling’

Price on his return to Red Sox: ’There’s not a better feeling’

BOSTON — Red Sox left-hander David Price is set to make his season debut in a holiday matinee Monday on the road in Chicago against the White Sox. 

Price, 31, starting the second season of a $217 million, seven-year contract, has been recovering from a strained pitching elbow since spring training.

“Excited, just to be back here,” he said Thursday. “There’s not a better feeling. You can’t replicate it anywhere else.”

Price allowed nine runs — six earned — and 12 hits in 5 2/3 innings in a pair of less-than-impressive injury rehabilitation starts at Triple-A Pawtucket. He struck out eight and walked two.

“A lot of pitches, in a short amount of time. I think that is more of a test to being healthy as opposed to going out there and throwing five or six [innings] in 90 pitches,” he said. “To do what I did in both of my rehab outings, I don’t think you can do that if you’re not healthy.”

The Red Sox (24-21) have won four in a row heading into their weekend series against the Seattle Mariners at Fenway Park.

“He’s eager to get back to us and physically he feels great,” Red Sox manager John Farrell said. “His return to us will give us a definite boost but that’s not to de-emphasize he needs to go out and perform.”

Farrell hopes Price’s return has a trickle-down impact.

“It’s not based solely on the name on the back of his jersey,” Farrell said. “Hopefully it allows us to even out some of the performances within the rotation.”

© 2017 by The Associated Press.