10/3 Miles to go

Cubs fans should know Aaron Miles is more upset about this season than anyone else. The infielder, who entered Saturday’s play batting .185, won’t use injuries as an excuse, but heading into the offseason, he’s still bothered by his right elbow. He doesn’t need surgery, just rest.

“It’s bothering me right now,” Miles said. “The shoulder obviously hurt this year. I always felt good enough to go out there and compete but I don’t think I was 100 percent and doing it at my best. I feel I’ll get there again. I’m up for the challenge of getting back to the form where I can hit .300 in this league and be a productive player.”

The biggest adjustment for Miles wasn’t switching from night to day games, which has bothered some players in their first year at Wrigley. It was changing his routine to deal with the realities of the ballpark. At the new Busch Stadium, Miles had an extra batting cage to go to during games.

“Here it’s tougher,” he said of Wrigley. “It’s more old school baseball. You have to tweak your routine a little bit because you’re not going to get all those extra swings because there’s one cage.

“For a guy like myself who takes pride in all the extra work he does and all the drills that help me get to the point which help me succeed, you have to tweak it and lock into other things to find success,” he said. “It’s a lot tougher in a place like this.

“At the same time, I’ve been fortunate to play in St. Louis where there’s a big crowd,” he said. “This crowd here will get you up any time. You always have the adrenaline and excitement and that’s a plus.”

And next season, expect a different ballplayer, more like the one who batted .317 in 2008.

“Definitely, people here haven’t seen what I can do,” Miles said. “One of the biggest things is to be a consistent tough at-bat and put the ball in play and be somebody the opposition hates to see. I’ve got a long road ahead of me to show these guys that I can still be that guy and show the fans, too. I’ll be up for the challenge.”

– Carrie Muskat

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