Epstein spotted in Chicago . . . or was he?

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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.

Ortiz quells comeback speculation: 'My playing time has expired'

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Ortiz quells comeback speculation: 'My playing time has expired'

Forget that cryptic Tweet to the Globe. David Ortiz isn't walking through that door, fans. At least not as a player.

"My playing time has already expired," Ortiz told ESPN Deportes. "Baseball is not something that you wake up today and you say, 'I'll play tomorrow.' Baseball is something that carries a lot of sacrifice, a lot of preparation, and there is a reason why we train the entire year to play it, practice every day, especially during the season, because it is a sport of consistency."

No one really thought he was contemplating a comeback, but last week he Tweeted this . . .

. . . and that raised hopes that he'd changed his mind.

Not so.

 

Red Sox avoid arbitration with Bogaerts, Holt with 1-year deals

Red Sox avoid arbitration with Bogaerts, Holt with 1-year deals

Facing a 1 p.m. Friday deadline to avoid arbitration, the Red Sox reportedly agreed to a one-year, $3.6 million deal with center field Jackie Bradley Jr., and also avoided hearings with six other players.

Shortstop Xander Bogaerts, utilityman Brock Holt, pitchers Joe Kelly, Robbie Ross Jr., Tyler Thornburgh and catcher Sandy Leon also agreed to one-year deals.

Terms of the deals were not announced.

It leaves left-handers Fernando Abad and Drew Pomeranz as the only arbitration-eligible Red Sox without a deal.