4/9 Hill vs. Soto

Koyie Hill was back behind the plate for the second straight game for the Cubs. Part of the rationale is that the Cubs want Geovany Soto to catch Carlos Zambrano on Saturday, and didn’t want Soto to play Friday night and have a short turnaround. Soto is 1-for-6 in two games.

“I like the way [Hill] calls a ballgame,” Lou Piniella said Friday. “He’s a really good defensive catcher. When a team isn’t scoring many runs, the more defense you have on the field, the better. Is he going to catch more? We need Soto to hit, I’ve said that before. That’s the key to this whole thing is how well Soto swings the bat, and we’ll leave it at that.”

Soto, who batted .285 in 2008 but just .218 last year, has been working with hitting coach Rudy Jaramillo. Piniella’s message isn’t that he’ll use Hill more than Soto. But the Cubs have scored nine runs in three games, and haven’t really manufactured any runs.

“Let’s just leave it that we need Soto to swing the bat,” Piniella said.

— Carrie Muskat


Since I am both Jesuit-educated and a Cubs fan… it drives me C-R-A-Z-Y that people (including the Cubs’ own announcer) cannot correctly pronounce “Xavier.” Once and for all people, it is NOT EX-AVIER IT IS ZAVIER

Hey Meach, in most cases, you are correct, but since it’s a person’s name and not the university/religious institution, it can be pronounced differently. Len and Bob confirmed tonight that it’s pronounced EX-AVIER. In either case, settle down.

Soto disappointed with his pot smoking antics and since then he really has not been the same hitter. Hopefully, he can get it together. Hill does a decent job catching, but Geo is the fan favorite, which wears pretty quickly if the results are that the Cubs aren’t wining any games. The Cubs need to start hitting the baseball and scoring some runs. Let’s Go Cubs!

It’s funny Piniella saying Soto needs to hit because the only player who’s worse is Hill. Soto can take a walk. Hill rarely walks. Hill calls a better game though. Maybe it’s time to give Castillo a crack as starter.

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