Predictions, Lineups, Hoffpauir and the Cubs TV Schedule

A day before reporting day for position players, the Cubs are just four players short of a full Spring Training Roster. Aramis Ramirez, Alfonso Soriano and Derrek Lee are the only regulars who have yet to report to Fitch ParkLuis Vizcaino is the only pitcher that has not reported, he is stuck in the Dominican Republic dealing with visa problems.

Lou Piniella told his team not to make any predictions this year after Carlos Zambrano and Ryan Dempster both said the Cubs would win the big prize the last two springs.

The biggest news from Day 4 of Camp Lou III was Lou Piniella stating he is considering moving Alfonso Soriano down in the lineup…if he does, Mike Fontenot, Aaron Miles, Ryan Theriot or Kosuke Fukudome could be used at the top of the lineup.

The Cubs TV Schedule was released on Monday. Opening Day in Houston will be carried on Comcast SportsNet. The Cubs’ Home Opener against the Rockies on April 13th will be on WGN. The Cubs will be on WGN 63 times this season and 80 times on Comcast SportsNet….WCIU, FOX and ESPN will broadcast the remaining 19 games.

Micah Hoffpauir

According to reports from the Tribune and, barring a calamitous spring Micah Hoffpauirwill make the Cubs roster as the fifth outfielder and backup at first base.” Piniella said the job is Hoffpauir’s to lose.

The Cubs will work Hoffpauir out in left, right and first base this spring.

Cory Provus

Cory Provus will call games at Wrigley Field North starting this season. Provus got the job to be Bob Uecker’s sidekick on the Brewers’ radio broadcasts.

Lou’s Lineup

With nine days before the Cubs’ first game of the Cactus League schedule, possible lineups for the Cubs were a big topic of discussion after Lou Piniella mentioned he was thinking about moving Alfonso Soriano out of the top spot.

Dave Kaplan and Paul Sullivan threw out their ideal lineups for the Cubs on Monday night.

Sullivan’s Lineup:

  1. Mike Fontenot
  2. Ryan Theriot
  3. Alfonso Soriano
  4. Milton Bradley
  5. Aramis Ramirez
  6. Derrek Lee
  7. Geovany Soto
  8. Kosuke Fukudome/Reed Johnson

Sullivan called Mike Fontenot and Ryan Theriot a possible ‘Daily Double‘.

Kaplan’s Lineup:

  1. Ryan Theriot
  2. Mike Fontenot
  3. Aramis Ramirez
  4. Milton Bradley
  5. Alfonso Soriano
  6. Derrek Lee
  7. Geovany Soto
  8. Kosuke Fukudome/Reed Johnson

Tidbits from Day 4

  • Mike Fontenot, Aaron Miles and Jake Fox took grounders at third base on Monday.
  • Not too many of the veterans were interested in playing games in Las Vegas this spring. Lou Piniella took a poll and was surprised by the results.
  • Paul Sullivan said on Sports Central that with the way the Cubs’ roster is currently constructed Aaron Miles and Mike Fontenot will serve as the backup to Aramis Ramirez.
  • Paul Sullivan thinks Jim Hendry will make another move during Spring Training
  • Will Carroll of Baseball Prospectus joined Dave Kaplan on Monday night. He described the Cubs’ roster as “balanced, flexible and younger than last year.

Video from WGN-TV

Quote of the Day

"You can’t sit on a lead and kill the clock. You’ve got to give the other man his chance. That’s why baseball is the greatest game." - Earl Weaver