Congrats to Keith Moreland (UPDATED)
A sure sign of spring: Cubs gear in Mesa.
MESA, Ariz. _ We'll post briefly this morning and then come back with more on what's already a busy morning here at Cubs camp. WGN radio announced this morning that Keith Moreland is the new analyst. Moreland gets a three-year deal. Moreland played for the Cubs from 1982-87.
LATE UPDATE: Check out our story on the Cubs' reaction to Albert Pujols' deadline passing with the Cardinals:
As much as I like Dave Otto (whom I covered many years ago as a prep athlete at Elk Grove High School), Moreland is a fine choice for the radio gig. He did great as a fill-in guy on radio and TV the last couple of years.
Moreland says he's "100 percent committed" to the Cubs and WGN, which means his days as an analyst for baseball and football at the University of Texas are over.
Moreland, of course, replaces the late Ron Santo. Keith said all the right things this morning, both on WGN radio and with us on the conference call. He said he can only be himself.
"That's the only thing I can be, just be me," he said. "Nobody can replace Ron Santo. He's irreplaceable. All I can do is keep the seat warm and do the best I can to be me. I have a great advantage in that in that I have a Hall of Fame broadcaster, no question, in Pat Hughes. That makes things a lot easier. If you go to work at Wrigley, I've done it. I know that it is an unbelievable opportunity to go to work."
I asked him about his style. "I don't know that I have a style," he said. "I'm just going to be me. I can probably butcher the English language with the best of them. I do understand the game. I feel very confident knowing the things you might be thinking of doing strategy wise. I think probably mine will be a little more analysis, but I'm also still a guy who likes to have fun, and Pat's easy to have fun with."
We also had a chance to visit with Marlon Byrd this morning. Byrd was featured on HBO for his training methods and his work with Victor Conte, of BALCO infamy.
"I'm a supplements guy," Byrd said. "I wanted to get it out there. I wanted people to see exactly what I do."
Byrd says he sends his supplements to Major League Baseball and that all are legal.
More to come on all fronts later today.