3/29 The roster, walks & runs
The Cubs are expected to trim the roster to 25 on Tuesday.
“Then we’ll be set to go,” Lou Piniella said.
There are four players — Chad Tracy, Kevin Millar, Micah Hoffpauir and Sam Fuld — battling for one spot. Millar is the only right-handed hitter in the group and he was hitting .242. He pinch-hit on Monday and popped up to the shortstop. Tracy was hitting .243 and can play third base if the Cubs want a backup there. He also has a career .302 average as a pinch-hitter. Hoffpauir was hitting .239 this spring and can play first and some outfield. Fuld, who can play all three outfield spots, was hitting .147.
“We’ve talked about it over and over again,” Piniella said. “Everybody brings a little something different to the equation. I think we have a pretty good idea but we’ll wait until tomorrow.”
* Tyler Colvin now is batting .455 after going 1-for-4 on Monday and driving in two runs. But he hasn’t drawn a single walk this spring.
“He hasn’t swung and missed that much,” Piniella said.
It will be interesting to see who makes the adjustments first — other teams or Colvin.
“If he continues to hit and the scouts start going over the fact that ‘Hey, this young man is swinging the bat so let’s be a little careful,’ then the walks will start coming,” Piniella said. “Right now, they’re just pitching to him.”
* Lefty James Russell, who will be one of three rookies in the bullpen, hasn’t given up a run this spring in 11 innings over nine games.
* Expect Derrek Lee, Alfonso Soriano and Aramis Ramirez back in the lineup on Tuesday.
– Carrie Muskat