CSN announces its 2012 White Sox, Cubs spring training on-aironline coverage schedule

CSN announces its 2012 White Sox, Cubs spring training on-aironline coverage schedule

COMCAST SPORTSNET ANNOUNCES ITS 2012 WHITE SOX AND CUBSSPRING TRAINING ON-AIRONLINE COVERAGE SCHEDULE

Every 2012 Spring Training game in HD!In-Depth Cactus League Coverage throughout FebruaryMarch on SportsNet Central and CSNChicago.com

Chicago, IL (February 16, 2012) Comcast SportsNet, the television home for the most games and most comprehensive coverage of the 2012 Chicago White Sox and 2012 Chicago Cubs, will provide baseball fans with an exciting, live, seven-game spring training schedule (five White Sox and two Cubs) featuring the White Sox announcing tandem of Ken Hawk Harrelson and Steve Stone, along with the Cubs announce team featuring Len Kasper and Bob Brenly. In addition, Chicago Tribune Live presented by Captain Morgan (Monday-Friday at 5:30 PM) and Comcast SportsNets nightly sports news desk SportsNet Central (at 6:30 PM presented by AT&T U-Verse, 10:00 PM & 10:30 PM presented by GMC and midnight presented by CLR) will offer the very latest player news and progress reports from Arizona, plus CSNChicago.com will provide SoxCubs fans with the most up-to-the-minute spring training news and developments 247.

Comcast SportsNets 2012 spring training schedule opens up with the Cubs taking on the defending AL Champion Texas Rangers on Thursday, March 22 at 3:00 PM live from Surprise, AZ. The additional Cubs game features a match-up against the LA Angels from HoHoKam Park in Mesa, AZ on March 31.

The first of five White Sox spring training telecasts takes place on Friday, March 23 at 9:00 PM as the White Sox host the Arizona Diamondbacks live from Camelback Ranch in Glendale, AZ. Additional White Sox opponents on this years spring training schedule include San Francisco (Mar. 25), LA Dodgers (Mar. 29), Cincinnati (Apr. 1) and Houston (Apr. 3). See attached schedule for the complete game schedule break down.

Beginning Saturday, February 18, Comcast SportsNets Chicago Tribune Live, SportsNet Central and CSNChicago.com will provide viewers with the very latest news and player updates from Arizona as Cubs Insider Patrick Mooney will begin the coverage with the latest updates from HoHoKam Park in Mesa. In addition, White Sox PrePost Game Live host Chuck Garfien will file live White Sox reports for both Comcast SportsNet and CSNChicago.com from Camelback Ranch in Glendale starting Feb. 22 and Cubs PrePost Game Live & Chicago Tribune Live host David Kaplan will provide up-to-the-minute CubsSox news starting Feb. 26.

Also from an online perspective, Comcast SportsNets newly-enhanced website, CSNChicago.com, (@CSNChicago) will deliver comprehensive 247 White SoxCubsMLB coverage with expert blog entries from Mooney (@CSNMooney), Kaplan (@thekapman), Cubs analyst Todd Hollandsworth, Garfien (@ChuckGarfien), White Sox blogger J.J. Stankevitz (@WhiteSoxTalkCSN) and Cubs blogger Tony Andracki (@CubsTalkCSN) on the sites Cubs Talk and White Sox Talk sections. Plus - weekly online chats, special web-exclusive shows, commentator blogs, photo slideshows and online video features will also be featured so fans on the go can stay on top of the latest news and developments wherever and whenever they occur.

In partnership with NBC Sports, CSNChicago.com Cubs and White Sox content will be featured on NBC Sports digital platforms including NBCSports.com, Hardball Talk, Rotoworld as well as partner sites including MSNBC.com and Xfinity.com. In addition, fans can see CSNChicago.com reporters featured on NBC SportsTalk daily news show on the NBC Sports Network for news updates on the Cubs and White Sox.

CSNChicago.com is the most extensive local source for exclusive online video, including player and coach interviews, press conferences, and content from Comcast SportsNets signature shows SportsNet Central and Chicago Tribune Live, which offer news and analysis from the regions most informed local lineup of award-winning reporters, analysts and personalities.

High School Lites Week 2 basketball capsules

High School Lites Week 2 basketball capsules

CSN Chicago will have cameras covering the biggest high school basketball games across Chicagoland for another basketball edition of High School Lites. Catch the show live at 11 p.m. Friday on CSN and streaming at CSNChicago.com

The show will feature numerous teams in the CSN Preps Power Rankings. The best game on Friday night could be No. 16 Benet traveling to No. 15 Notre Dame in a clash of unbeatens in the ESCC but there will be plenty of other highlights to check for.

The Red-West, North Suburban and Southland are all prominently featured on the show this week while High School Lites will also have highlights from the SouthWest Suburban.

This week's Viewers' Choice Game of the Week generated over 5,000 votes as Von Steuben will travel to Taft to represent the Red-North.

We'll also have a Getting to Know feature on Conant senior guard Jimmy Sotos.

Thursday's Game

Hyde Park at No. 7 Kenwood, 4:30 p.m. -- Kenwood will try to keep its momentum going as they host Hyde Park in a Red-Central battle. Kenwood (5-1, 1-0) is coming off of a Red-Central win over Dunbar earlier this week while Hyde Park (3-1, 1-0) defeated Lindblom for a conference victory as well. The Broncos are still unbeaten in Illinois as they're relying on senior big man Manny Patterson and his talented group of teammates. Hyde Park is trying to figure things out in head coach Jevon Mamon's first season as Andrew Anderson had a nice game against U-High at the Chicago Elite Classic.

Friday's Games

No. 11 North Lawndale at Westinghouse, 4:30 p.m. -- The Red-West is going to be a lot of fun to watch this season as this should be an interesting game. The Phoenix (5-1, 1-0) knocked off Marshall for a Red-West win on Wednesday while Westinghouse (3-3, 0-1) is coming off of a tough double-overtime loss to Farragut. Westinghouse is going to have to slow down Carlos Hines and Martrell Barnes but they can counter with a talented senior of their own in Coreyoun Rushin.  

Kankakee at Crete-Monee, 6:00 p.m. -- We also head to the Southland on Friday night as Kankakee (1-3, 0-1) travels to Crete-Monee (3-2, 1-0). The Warriors survived a high-scoring, double-overtime win over Rich East on Wednesday as they're led by senior and Toledo commit Dwayne Rose, the nephew of Derrick Rose. Kankakee is off to a sluggish start as they've lost some close games and they could use a conference road win here.

Rich East at No. 19 Bloom, 7:00 p.m. -- Keeping it in the Southland, Rich East (2-4, 0-1) will try to shake off a double-overtime loss this week as they travel to face No. 19 Bloom. Rich East has two one-point losses and the double-OT loss to Crete-Monee this year, so they could be better than the 2-4 record indicates. Bloom (4-1, 1-0) was impressive during Thanksgiving week at the Chicago Heights Classic as they look like one of the premier teams in the South Suburbs this year.

No. 24 Thornton at Lincoln-Way West, 7:00 p.m. -- These two teams battled in the SouthWest Suburban Red last season and both programs return some key pieces. Lincoln-Way West (2-4, 1-0) is led by senior Marco Pettinato as he's an All-Area candidate and big-time scorer. Thornton (3-2) will counter with a big scorer of its own with senior Alonzo Verge.

No. 16 Benet at No. 15 Notre Dame, 7:00 p.m. -- This could be the best matchup of Friday night as two unbeatens clash in the ESCC. Benet (5-0) is coming off of a runner-up finish in Class 4A as they bring back some talented players like Jack Nolan, Liam Lyman and Justin Enochs. The Redwings have looked very good early this season as they've piled up a lot of double-digit wins. Notre Dame (6-0) is also off to a hot start as they picked up an overtime win over Loyola and another victory over Bartlett last weekend. The Dons have a lot of size on the inside as Chris Heinichen, Jeameril Wilson and Sean Johnson are all 6-foot-5 or bigger.

No. 12 Stevenson at Mundelein, 7:00 p.m. -- Stevenson is off to a great start as they try to carry that into Mundelein in this North Suburban contest. The Patriots (6-0, 2-0) are led by Indiana commit and senior Justin Smith as he's one of the best players in the state this season. Mundelein (2-4, 0-1) dropped one to Zion-Benton earlier this week as they try to get back on track in the North Suburban race.

Lake Zurich at Zion Benton, 7:00 p.m. -- Two team with high expectations in the North Suburban face each other in this one. Zion-Benton (2-1, 1-1) dropped a conference game to leader Stevenson last weekend but recovered with a double-digit win over Mundelein during the week. Lake Zurich (4-1, 0-1) dropped its conference opener to Waukegan after a 4-0 start to the season.

Viewers' Choice Game of the Week

Von Steuben at Taft, 6:30 p.m. -- This week's poll was a tight one as over 5,000 people voted and this game barely beat Lane at Uplift. The Panthers (0-2, 0-1) are trying to pick up their first win of the season after losing to an out-of-state opponent and No. 9 Uplift. Senior Rafael Cruz put up monster numbers last season as he's the player to watch for Von Steuben. Taft opened its Red-North slate at home against Lincoln Park as they're facing two tough opponents right out of the gate at home. They'll try to capitalize on those early conference home games with a win here.

Koji Uehara would add another dimension to Cubs bullpen

Koji Uehara would add another dimension to Cubs bullpen

The Cubs are reportedly on the verge of adding another pitcher who’s notched the final out of a World Series as Theo Epstein’s front office builds out the bullpen for manager Joe Maddon.

The Cubs are nearing a one-year, $4.5 million deal with Koji Uehara, according to Nikkan Sports in Japan, which would open up even more possibilities for the defending champs in front of All-Star closer Wade Davis.

The Cubs made their biggest splash during this week’s winter meetings at National Harbor in Maryland by trading young outfielder Jorge Soler to the Kansas City Royals for Davis, who finished off Game 5 in the 2015 World Series.

Uehara closed out the 2013 World Series for the Boston Red Sox, the beginning of three straight seasons where he put up 20-plus saves. The Cubs have not confirmed an agreement is in place.

The Cubs needed another lefty presence with Mike Montgomery – the pitcher on the mound when the 108-year drought ended in November – moving to the rotation and Travis Wood likely leaving as a free agent.

Uehara throws right-handed, but he shuts down left-handed hitters (.183 batting average, .555 OPS across 800 at-bats) and has appeared in seven postseason series after a distinguished career in Japan.

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Uehara will turn 42 the day after Opening Day. But an array of relievers should help preserve Uehara, strengthen Carl Edwards Jr. (who’s generously listed at 170 pounds) and maybe prevent the late-season injuries that marginalized Hector Rondon and Pedro Strop during the playoffs.

“We’re going to try to build up a ton of depth,” Epstein said. “We’re going to try to build up a really talented, deep bullpen with a lot of different options that you can use in close games.

“Instead of three late-game options, it would be ideal if you had five or six. And you could always like who you’re turning to in the ‘pen and not feel the need to use a Rondon four out of five times.

“(We could) use them every other day and occasional back-to-backs. And that would help keep them fresh down the stretch – and help keep them strong in October.”