9/27 Imagine 30 HR, 100 RBIs from Rizzo

Anthony Rizzo now has played 82 games since he was promoted from Triple-A Iowa on June 26. That’s slightly more than half a season, and if you project his numbers over a full 162-game schedule, they’re pretty impressive. Rizzo hit his 15th home run on Thursday in the Cubs’ 7-5 loss to the Rockies, and has 47 RBIs. Double that, and the Cubs could have a 30-homer, 100-RBI hitter in the lineup.

“That’s pretty impressive at 22 years old,” Dale Sveum said.

Rizzo nearly paid a price for his home run. He connected in the third, but in the fifth, the second pitch from the Rockies’ Jhoulys Chacin sailed behind Rizzo.

“I wasn’t expecting that at all,” Rizzo said. “I did a pretty good job to get out of the way. The first pitch was a changeup and the second was behind my back. I shook it off and went from there.”

The Cubs eventually loaded the bases in the fifth, and Rizzo tried to score on Luis Valbuena’s grounder. He slid hard, and was closer to the catcher than home plate. Was it payback time?

“No, I think it was just [Chacin] bobbled it, and I didn’t want to get that double play,” Rizzo said. “I slide hard all the time trying to break something up. I guess that’s just coincidence.”

He hasn’t projected his numbers.

“Ask me that in a couple days when the season is done and I’ll sit back and reflect,” Rizzo said. “I just have to keep working hard and keep going.”

– Carrie Muskat

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