Report: Cubs inch closer to creating their own TV network

                                                                                                                                                                                                   
  • Chicago Cubs star Kris Bryant, left, and Triple A Iowa's Mike Freeman enter the field to take on the Omaha Storm Chasers in a baseball game Monday, Aug. 27, 2018, in Papillion, Neb.

    Chicago Cubs star Kris Bryant, left, and Triple A Iowa's Mike Freeman enter the field to take on the Omaha Storm Chasers in a baseball game Monday, Aug. 27, 2018, in Papillion, Neb. Associated Press

 
 
Updated 8/27/2018 9:18 PM

The Cubs may have taken one more step toward creating their own TV network after their current deals run out following the 2019 season.

The idea that the Cubs will start their own station is hardly new -- they have been talking about it for several years. Their current deals with NBC Sports Chicago, WGN and ABC 7 expire after next season.

 

WSCR radio reported Monday that the Cubs will end their association with NBC Sports Chicago, severing their ties with the White Sox, Bulls and Blackhawks as part of the NBC Sports Chicago deal.

WSCR reported that the Cubs have hired Mike McCarthy to lead the TV effort. McCarthy was previously president of the MSG Network and the CEO of the St. Louis Blues.

Help is on the way:

Cubs manager Joe Maddon said he has not talked with the front office about minor-league call-ups. Teams may expand rosters from 25 players beginning Sept. 1.

The Cubs are due to get several veteran players off the disabled list soon. Maddon said things he likes in minor-league call-ups are a catcher, speed and bullpen arms.

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One of those players is third baseman Kris Bryant, who began a minor-league rehab stint with Class AAA Iowa Monday night. Bryant batted second and was the designated hitter. He flied out to right his first time up and reached on an error in the fourth. He walked in the fifth. In the seventh inning, Bryant struck out swinging.

Pitcher Tyler Chatwood started for Iowa. He lost his starting job because of wildness and currently is on the DL with a hip injury.

Monday at Omaha, Chatwood pitched 4⅓ innings, giving up 3 hits and 2 runs. He walked five and struck out three. Chatwood threw 77 pitches, 39 strikes.

Doing it with two outs:

David Bote started at third base for the Cubs Monday night against the New York Mets. Of Bote's 24 RBI entering the game, 15 came with two outs. His 15 two-out RBIs ranked sixth on the team entering Monday despite Bote having played in only 45 games with 109 at-bats.

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