Schilling: Rays, Cubs viable options

Updated: March 2, 2009, 4:10 PM ET
ESPN.com news services

His own odds weigh heavily against it.

But if Curt Schilling returns to pitch this season in the major leagues, a comeback likely could involve the American League-champion Tampa Bay Rays or Chicago Cubs.

"The challenge would be in a place like Tampa Bay or Chicago," the free agent said Saturday in Orlando, Fla.

Schilling, who sat out the 2008 season after undergoing shoulder surgery, said he hasn't made a decision on coming back.

Schilling was in Florida attending ESPN The Weekend festivities at Walt Disney World.

"I'm hemming and hawing right now," he said. "I'll make a decision in the next couple of weeks."

Schilling put the chances of his return at 20 percent Friday.

"I'm pretty sure I'm not going to, but I'm not positive," he said, speaking to ESPN Radio's Erik Kuselias on the "Tirico & Van Pelt" show. "I don't have to make a decision yet, and I'm just not sure if I want to."

Cubs general manager Jim Hendry wouldn't specify whether his team would be interested in Schilling, but he sounded optimistic when discussing the prospect of the 20-year veteran's return with the Chicago Tribune.

"We'll always keep our eye on anybody we think can help us," Hendry told the newspaper. "I have a lot of respect for him. Great pitcher. Great big-game pitcher."

Manager Lou Piniella echoed his GM.

"This guy, he's a pro," Piniella said, according to the Chicago Tribune. "I don't know how accurate [the reports] are, but if you get a pitcher with his credentials and his winning habits, it would be something to explore."

Schilling, who has a 216-146 career record, declined Friday to say exactly when he would announce his decision.

"I'll figure it out when I need to figure it out," he said.