7/28 Lineup & quick hits

Naturally, Koyie Hill is starting at catcher Tuesday night. It’s his 18th straight game, and he’s the first Cubs catcher to start that many games since Damon Berryhill, who was behind the plate for 25 straight from May 13-June 9, 1989.

It’ll be CF Fukudome, SS Theriot, 1B Lee, 3B Ramirez, RF Bradley, LF Soriano, 2B Fontenot, C Hill and P Dempster.

* Lou Piniella is happy with Hill’s effort.

“He’s done a real nice job, calls a real good game,” Piniella said. “He takes charge back behind home plate and the bottom line is we’re winning. We’re very pleased with the job he’s done. He throws well so he stops the other team from getting too adventuresome on the basepaths. We’ve caught him every day and he’s durable and enjoys what he’s doing.”

As far as Geovany Soto’s progress, he’s taking batting practice and may start playing games this week as he rehabs from a strained oblique.

* Bench coach Ivan DeJesus worked with second baseman Mike Fontenot on his bunting on Tuesday. Fontenot missed a bunt attempt on Monday.

* Does being in first mean things are any different?

“I don’t think so,” Piniella said. “We’ve got games on our schedule, and we need to win a certain amount of them. I don’t think there’s any different feeling.”

— Carrie Muskat


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