Rizzo Gets Territorial, Trade Chips and Other Cubs News and Notes

Anthony Rizzo left Saturday’s game before the eighth inning with back spasms and his start on Sunday at the time was in doubt. The Cubs had Mike Olt take grounders at first base on Sunday morning in the event Rizzo could not play.

Rizzo told the beat writers he jokingly said to Olt not to workout at first base because that is his position. Anthony Rizzo played all nine innings on Sunday and reached base four times (2-for-3 with two walks) in five trips to the plate.

Rick Renteria likes what he’s seen from Anthony Rizzo and Starlin Castro at the plate. Rizzo and Castro have hit the ball rather well early in the season, both players are working counts and their two-strike approach has pleased their skipper. Rizzo is “choking up a little” with two strikes and is “trying not to be so pull conscious.” Rizzo is taking what the pitchers are giving him.

After Sunday’s game, Starlin Castro is hitting .292/.313/.415 with two doubles and two home runs for the season while Anthony Rizzo has managed a .333/.414/.500 slash line with two doubles, one triple, two home runs, seven walks and a .914 OPS. Rizzo is hitting .348/.385/.391 against lefties.

Cubs Trade Chips

While the Cubs were in the Bronx last week, the Sun-Times mentioned four players that could possibly interest the Yankees at some point this season before the July 31 trade deadline. The Sun-Times thought Jeff Samardzija, Darwin Barney, Emilio Bonifacio and James Russell might be a fit for the Yankees as they try to fill holes in their roster.

So after three full weeks and seventeen games, here’s how the players teams could be interested in this summer are performing:

  • Jeff Samardzija: 0-2 in four starts with a 1.29 ERA and a 1.07 WHIP
  • Travis Wood: 0-2 in three starts with a 3.00 ERA and a 1.39 WHIP
  • Edwin Jackson: 1-1 in four starts with a 5.40 ERA and a 1.85 WHIP
  • Jason Hammel: 2-1 in three starts with a 3.05 ERA and a 0.73 WHIP
  • Carlos Villanueva: 1-4 in five games, three starts, with a 10.93 ERA and a 2.14 WHIP
  • James Russell: 0-1 in nine games, 5 2/3 innings, with a 3.18 ERA and a 1.76 WHIP
  • Wesley Wright: 0-0 in six games, 5 2/3 innings, with a 3.18 ERA and a 1.59 WHIP
  • Jose Veras: 0-0 in five games, 4 2/3 innings, with a 15.43 ERA and a 2.79 WHIP
  • Emilio Bonifacio: .366/.416/.423/.838 in 16 games with four doubles
  • Darwin Barney: .129/.270/.226/.496 in 14 games with one home run
  • Luis Valbuena: .219/.419/.250/.669 in 15 games with one double
  • Nate Schierholtz: .246/.254/.298/.552 in 14 games with three doubles
  • Ryan Sweeney: .184/.256/.211/.466 in 14 games with one double
News and Notes

ESPN Chicago looked at the lineup Rick Renteria used on Sunday.

Rick Renteria started Mike Olt for the second day in a row on Sunday. Renteria said, “I’ve been trying over time with all of the guys to give them some days when they go back to back. It gives them a better view and a little more comfortable.” Renteria added “they’re going to face lefties and righties” and they need to start on back-to-back days in order “to get some kind of comfort.”

Darwin Barney is reinventing himself according to a report from Bruce Levine.

The jury is still out on Mike Olt according to a report from Tony Andracki.

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Quote of the Day

"People who write about Spring Training not being necessary have never tried to throw a baseball." – Sandy Koufax