'Concerned' about the offensive line? Not Marshall

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'Concerned' about the offensive line? Not Marshall

On Monday, quarterback Jay Cutler said that the offensive line was a concern as it worked at settling players into positions and coming together. By the time it was flipped and sautd by some commentators, Cutler was concerned about the offensive line.

Not exactly the same thing, but hey.

On Tuesday, wide receiver Brandon Marshall had a precisely opposite slant on the supposed concern. He had tried to drop in and do some drills with the O-linemen during Tuesday mornings voluntary team workouts at Halas Hall and they got on me and threw me out, Marshall said, laughing.

Marshall spent Tuesday afternoon visiting with the kids at UCAN Academy in Chicago, answering questions and giving advice.

He also had a prediction about the offensive line:

When I look over and see our offensive line working, I get chills and get so excited, he said.

Those guys are working hard and I think theyre actually going to be the group thats going to lead us to where we need to be.

So youre not concerned then?

Oh, not at all, Marshall said.

The suspicion here is that neither is Cutler, whose comments had to do with finalizing the front five, injured players like Gabe Carimi and Chris Williams coming back, and how JMarcus Webb pans out at left tackle after a struggling first season switching to left tackle without an offseason of orientation.

One spin of Cutlers comments was that he was going against the need assessments of coach Lovie Smith and coordinator Mike Tice, who have been on record as being comfortable with the players available. Not surprisingly, the Bears did not spend any draft choices on an offensive lineman, finishing with defensive backs in rounds six and seven.

Heres the problem with portraying Cutlers comments as being concerned with the offensive line:

Cutler lobbied for Jeremy Bates twice, first for the coordinator position in 2010 (Bates opted out and for Seattle instead) and again this offseason, with the result that Bates was hired as quarterbacks coach.

If the franchise quarterback had meaningful reservations about his offensive line, beyond the obvious wanting to see decisions on whether Webb or Williams is the left tackle and which of four options emerge as the starting guards, does anyone really think he couldnt have lobbied for something in a draft that saw the Bears take a backup safety in the third round and third tight end in the fourth?

White Sox instructor Luis Sierra to coach in 2017 World Baseball Classic

White Sox instructor Luis Sierra to coach in 2017 World Baseball Classic

Luis Sierra hopes to take another step next spring toward achieving his dream of being a major league manager when he coaches in the World Baseball Classic.

Sierra — who spent eight of 10 minor league seasons in the White Sox farm system — will return as a coach for Colombia after participating in the WBC qualifier last spring.

Colombia, which plays in Pool D in Miami along with the United States, Canada and Dominican Republic, is managed by Luis Urueta, a short-season field coordinator in the Arizona Diamondbacks’ farm system. Sierra, a pregame instructor in his second year for the White Sox, is Colombia’s first-base coach. The 29-year-old said the transition from player to coach hasn’t been too difficult.

[SHOP: Gear up, White Sox fans!]

“It didn’t take too long and that’s what I do now and that’s my focus, just to help the guys and get better as a coach and as a person,” Sierra said. “It’s been a great experience so far. Still learning. Hopefully one day I’ll be a big league manager.”

Sierra, who was a catcher and an infielder in his professional career, hails from Barranquilla, which is also the home of White Sox pitcher Jose Quintana. The two live near each other and work out in the offseason. Quintana has expressed interest in pitching for Colombia during the 2017 WBC.

Cubs-Pirates game ends in a 1-1 tie

Cubs-Pirates game ends in a 1-1 tie

PITTSBURGH – This definitely felt like something out of spring training, with Thursday night’s game between the Cubs and Pittsburgh Pirates suspended as rain kept pouring down on PNC Park, ending after five innings in a 1-1 tie.

Major League Baseball considered this an official game – its first tie since it happened to the Cincinnati Reds and Houston Astros on June 30, 2005 – and stats will still count after an 83-minute rain delay. But there is no need to make it up with the Cubs having already clinched the National League’s No. 1 seed and the Pirates eliminated from wild-card contention.

The last time the Cubs finished in a tie: a 2-2 five-inning draw with the Montreal Expos on May 28, 1993 at Wrigley Field.