3/30 Dodgers 6, Cubs 3
What went right:
Ryan Dempster tuned up for Opening Day with 4 2/3 innings, giving up one run on four hits and three walks. His next start will be April 5 at Wrigley Field against the Nationals. Ian Stewart hit his second spring homer with two outs in the fourth. Alfonso Soriano added a RBI double.
All the grounders bench coach Jamie Quirk has been hitting to Darwin Barney paid off in the second when the second baseman made a nifty move to his right to rob Juan Uribe of a potential hit.
What went wrong:
With the game tied at 1 in the seventh, the Dodgers had two on and one out against Manuel Corpas. Dee Gordon lined the ball to right and one out later, Corpas departed. James Loney then smacked a single off Lendy Castillo, a Rule 5 pickup whom the Cubs are trying to decide whether to keep this season, to go ahead, 4-1.
The Cubs may want to keep Joe Mather at first, third or in the outfield. He subbed at second base for the first time and booted a ball for an error in the ninth. On the next play, though, he did turn a double play.
“If someone would’ve told me I would have this well of a camp, I’d be jumping up and down. It’s been awesome. They gave me quite a bit of an opportunity and it feels good to take advantage of that.” — Joe Mather, who was told Thursday he’d made the Opening Day roster.
Marcos Mateo continues to rehab from right elbow soreness. He will not be ready for Opening Day.
This and that:
* There are technically 11 relievers still on the spring roster, and the Cubs will head north with seven. Carlos Marmol, Kerry Wood and James Russell are set. Casey Coleman is on the list of 11 but has been told he’s going to Triple-A Iowa. Frankie De La Cruz also was in the Minor League camp and not expected to make the Opening Day roster. That leaves Manuel Corpas, Alberto Cabrera, Shawn Camp, Lendy Castillo, Rodrigo Lopez, and Rafael Dolis. Dale Sveum said the final decision may not be made until Wednesday, the workout day at Wrigley Field.
* Sveum did reveal his Opening Day lineup against the Dodgers. When they open the season against the Nationals at Wrigley Field next Thursday, it’ll most likely be: RF David DeJesus, 2B Darwin Barney, SS Starlin Castro, 1B Bryan LaHair, LF Alfonso Soriano, 3B Ian Stewart, CF Marlon Byrd, C Geovany Soto and P Ryan Dempster.
Paul Maholm will make his fourth Cactus League start on Saturday when the Cubs play host to the Angels at HoHoKam Park. Maholm, who will be the fifth starter in the rotation, has struck out 10 over 10 innings this spring. He’s given up one earned run on eight hits. The game will be broadcast on Comcast Sports Net and also WGN Radio.
– Carrie Muskat