4/9 Hot start

Emilio Bonifacio has not only provided a much needed spark for the Cubs offense but he’s made it very easy for manager Rick Renteria to fill out his lineup card. David DeJesus was the Cubs’ main leadoff man last season until he was traded. Others to bat No. 1 in 2013 included Starlin Castro, Luis Valbuena, Dave Sappelt, Junior Lake, Darwin Barney, and Julio Borbon. Bonifacio has led off all seven Cubs games this season, and provided stability at that spot.

“If you can have a leadoff guy who you can slot in, it’s really big,” Renteria said. “We’ve had a couple guys who have done it in the past — Starlin has done it, and Junior has done it. ‘Boni’ might profile more as a typical leadoff guy.”

Bonifacio is on a record-setting pace. According to Elias, he is the first big league player in the modern era (since 1900) to record games with one hit, two hits, three hits, four hits and five hits all within the team’s first seven contests of a season. Bonifacio‘s 17 hits are the most by any Cubs player in the team’s first seven games of a season in the last 100 years since 1914, according to STATS Inc.

— Carrie Muskat

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