3/12 Extra bases

* Top prospect Javier Baez is projected as the starting shortstop at Triple-A Iowa but will get some playing time at second base in Cactus League games, beginning next week, Cubs manager Rick Renteria said Wednesday.

“We want to still be able to see him work and play at different positions,” Renteria said. “We still haven’t gotten him over at second base. We plan on doing it Monday or Tuesday. We’ll go from there, maybe working him at third.”

Baez has been working with infield coach Gary Jones at second and third.

* Jason Hammel and Eric Jokisch will face Minor Leaguers on Thursday, which is an off day for the Cubs, so they can stay on schedule. Hammel has made one Cactus League start last Saturday against the Reds, and gave up two hits over three innings. The right-hander admitted he had a few butterflies before the game, his first with the Cubs.

* Sunday’s Cubs game against the Indians in Mesa will be telecast on Comcast SportsNet and will be entirely commercial free. According to a Comcast spokesman, the broadcast will feature interviews and features on players and coaches. The broadcast will begin at 3 p.m. CT.

* The ninth Annual “Race to Wrigley” 5k will be held April 12 at Wrigley Field. Voted “Best 5k in the Midwest” in 2013 by Competitor magazine, last year’s event drew approximately 6,000 runners and raised more than $300,000 for Cubs Charities and the Ann & and Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago.

The top fundraising team and individual fundraiser will receive tickets to the April 22 Cubs game against the Diamondbacks and be recognized in a pre-game ceremony. Anyone who raises more than $1,000 will have the opportunity to run a post-race victory lap around the ballpark’s warning track. For more information and to register, go to http://www.racetowrigley.com.

— Carrie Muskat


Javier Baez will be ROY in 2014……made a few nice plays and hit a bomb.

Sorry, but instant replay is only good for NFL…..not for MLB……Cubs runner is safe in the 4th, but the umpires still called him out.

BTW, Junior Lake needs to stop making long looks at umpires on called third strikes…or Junior will hear third strikes five feet off the corner of the plate.

McDonald really sucks……no spot for him on this roster.

Looks like a cattle drive out in the berm tonight at Seattle’s ball park……..I think some of those Seattle fans are eating the grass out there tonight.

oh oh….Tony H is hearing voices in his head again talking about what his imaginary friend is telling him about the teams roster information.

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isn’t baez a shortstop? if he make opening day roster, would he play third with castro at short? baez looks really good.

The Cubs have already announced that Baez will start the season at AAA, regardless of how well he does in the spring. He’ll follow the same path as Rizzo did two years ago: start at AAA and as long as he’s healthy and playing well get called up in late-June. Baez will most likely break into the Majors as a second baseman, which means Barney’s days with the Cubs are numbered. However, Baez’s natural position is shortstop, so I guess they’re keeping him there in the minors so he stays comfortable. Short is the toughest of the infield positions, so if you learn short, you can play pretty much anywhere on the infield. As for third, look for Luis Valbuena to start at third, with Mike Olt in the mix as well. If Olt continues to play well this spring and it carries over to the regular season, you could see a very young and promising infield of Olt-Castro-Baez-Rizzo by the time the all-star break rolls around.
I think the Cubs are giving Castro every chance to succeed as a SS. He had a bad offensive year last year, but he had two good ones before it and while his defense is not great, he has shown improvements every year. If he has a bounce back year, he will be at short for years to come.

i agree regarding barney. never cared for him. thank you very much for your feedback.

This is unbelievable. Our Doug is All-Knowing. He can even tell us what is going to transpire in the future with our Cubs. Is just a matter of time before he is snatched by Theo to work in the front office, methinks. We can hold a contest to predict who is going to dominate this site after the Mighty Doug exits. Hell, I surmise he can divulge to governments all over the planet exactly what happened to that missing airliner. He knows everything else.

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