Big Z at the plate
For the second straight game, Lou Piniella called on Carlos Zambrano to pinch-hit. Big Z struck out, and is 1-for-3 as a pinch-hitter so far. After Saturday’s game, which the Cubs won, 6-1, Piniella was asked about the risk of using Zambrano in that situation.
“What’s the risk?” Piniella said of Zambrano, who will start Sunday. “He’s going to bat four times tomorrow.”
What if he gets smoked by a pitch?
“How about if I get run over by a car on the way to the ballpark?” said Piniella, who has a short bench because of injuries. “I’ve got [Milton] Bradley, who I didn’t want to use, and I’ve got [Aramis] Ramirez, who I don’t want to use, so I’ve got Reed Johnson and [Koyie] Hill. When you’re too cautious at times, you’re going to get hurt. When you play the game and throw a little bit of caution to the wind, usually nothing happens. You’re always taking chances. The fans enjoy watching [Zambrano] come up, too. He sort of gives the fans that finishing touch for a ballgame. You’re right, in a way, but as shorthanded as we are, we have to be careful.”
— Carrie Muskat