Tuesday wasn’t the best of days for the Cubs. Before losing the game to the Marlins, the team found out that Jorge Soler hurt his left ankle Monday night when he landed awkwardly on first base. Soler had an MRI and the results are expected early Wednesday.
Joe Maddon would not rule out Soler landing on the DL when taking to the beat writers about his right fielder. Best case scenario is that Soler is day-to-day and if it is determined Soler’s ankle injury is not severe, Maddon doesn’t see a reason to place him on the disabled list.
Junior Lake could see more playing time, filling in for Soler in right field while he is out.
Lake hit a pair of doubles Tuesday night, one to right field and the other to left. And Lake drove in one of the Cubs’ two runs. Lake has looked like a different player this year than the one that struggled to make contact last season.
In 13 games in the majors, Lake is batting .257/.297/.371 with four doubles, two walks and nine strikeouts.
Joe Maddon has liked what he has seen from Junior Lake since Spring Training. Maddon told the beat writers Tuesday, “He’s kind of a complete player. I think he’s under the radar a little bit right now. I like what he’s doing. I do.”
Junior Lake has shown, in spurts, that he has the talent to be in the big leagues. Consistency has always been an issue for Lake, not only from game to game, but in some cases inning to inning and at-bat to at-bat.
Major League Baseball posted an update on voting for the National League All-Star team on Tuesday … and the Cubs slipped in the fan vote.
Anthony Rizzo (834,554) is now third in the NL among first basemen behind Adrian Gonzalez (1,380,696) and Paul Goldschmidt (1,067,482).
Kris Bryant (1,079,693) is second in the voting for NL third basemen behind Matt Carpenter (1,974,503).
Starlin Castro, Miguel Montero, Dexter Fowler and Jorge Soler are still in the running but quickly falling behind the leaders.
News, Notes and Rumors
• Starlin Castro received a lot of heat Tuesday for the way he jogged around the bases following his homer on Monday. Castro said he respects the game and doesn’t worry about the critics according to Comcast SportsNet. He took his time because he wanted to enjoy rounding the bases. Joe Maddon did not have any problem with Castro’s time around the bases. Castro collected the 900th hit of his career on Tuesday night, said he expects to reach 1,000 this season but he yearns most for trust at shortstop according to the Sun-Times.
• Joe Maddon said the Cubs did not deserve to win Tuesday night’s game. ESPN Chicago reported one pitch and a baserunning blunder cost the Cubs.
• The Iowa Cubs hit a season-high four home runs on Tuesday night … Javier Baez hit two, Arismendy Alcantara went deep for the eighth time and Christian Villanueva hit his fifth longball. Iowa has hit 49 homers in 53 games this year according to Randy Wehofer.
• According to Bob Elliott, the Blue Jays had scouts at the Cubs-Marlins game on Tuesday night. Elliott did not indicate which players or team Bryan Lambe and Sal Butera were at Marlins Park to watch.
• The Cubs slipped three spots to No. 10 in Sports Illustrated’s Power Rankings for the week.
• Addison Russell answered some questions on Twitter for ESPN Chicago.
• Monday was the first time the Cubs had five players 25 years old or younger drive in runs in the same game since 1974. Anthony Rizzo, Kris Bryant, Jorge Soler, Addison Russell and Starlin Castro each collected a RBI on Monday … on Sept. 14, 1974 it was Ron Dunn, Jerry Morales, Rob Sperring, Andre Thornton and Jim Tyrone that drove in runs in a 12-0 win over the Mets at Shea Stadium.
• LHP Scott Kazmir has been cleared to return to the A’s rotation. Kazmir is scheduled to start the opener at Fenway Park on Friday night. Kazmir is not going to be on a pitch count according to a report from Hardball Talk.
• According to the Sun-Times, four years after playing his last game in the Majors, Manny Ramirez is not ready to say he is retired yet.
• Jason Hammel has pretty much been a beast according to FanGraphs.
And last, but not least, Buster Olney has “heard more concern from hitters/staffers” than he can ever recall “about what they say is the inconsistency of the strike zone this year.”
This Day in Cubstory
2003 – Sammy Sosa was ejected from the game in the first inning after he shattered his bat and the broken pieces exposed cork. Further inspection of the bat revealed it was loaded with cork. Sosa was ejected and the run was taken off the board. The Cubs beat the Devil Rays 3-2 at Wrigley Field. Sosa’s eight- game suspension was appealed down to seven games.
Note Correction: Sosa was caught with cork in his bat on June 3, 2003 … not June 2 as incorrectly posted
2003 – Cubs selected Jake Fox in the third round of the draft
2003 – Cubs selected Sean Marshall in the sixth round of the draft
2003 – Cubs selected Casey McGehee in the tenth round of the draft
2003 – Cubs selected Tim Lincecum in the 48th round of the draft, but was not signed
1997 – Cubs selected Jon Garland in the first round (tenth overall pick) of the draft
1997 – Cubs selected Scott Downs in the third round of the draft
1997 – Cubs selected Michael Wuertz in the 11th round of the draft
1993 – Cubs selected Brooks Kieschnick in the first round (tenth overall pick) of the draft
1993 – Cubs selected Jon Ratliff in the first round (24th overall pick) of the draft
1993 – Cubs selected Kevin Orie in the first round (29th overall pick) of the draft
1993 – Cubs selected Bo Porter in the 40th round of the draft
1991 – Cubs selected Doug Glanville in the first round (12th overall pick) of the draft
1991 – Indians selected Manny Ramirez in the first round (13th overall pick) of the draft
1991 – Cubs selected Ozzie Timmons in the fifth round of the draft
1991 – Cubs selected Steve Trachsel in the eighth round of the draft
1991 – Cubs selected Jon Lieber in the ninth round of the draft
1987 – Three grand slams are hit in a Cubs 22-7 victory over the Astros. Keith Moreland and Brian Dayett went deep for the Cubs, Billy Hatcher for Houston. Jody Davis scored five runs.
1985 – Cubs selected Rafael Palmeiro in the first round (22nd overall pick) of the draft
1985 – Cubs selected Rick Wrona in the fifth round of the draft
1985 – Cubs selected Kevin Tapani in the ninth round of the draft
1985 – Cubs selected Doug Dascenzo in the 12th round of the draft
1985 – Cubs selected Mark Grace in the 24th round of the draft
1980 – Cubs selected Don Schulze in the first round (11th overall pick) of the draft
1980 – Cubs selected Craig Lefferts in the ninth round of the draft
1978 – Cubs and Braves tied a Major League record for the most pitchers used in a single game. The two teams used 14 pitches, seven each, in a Cubs 8-6 victory at Wrigley Field
1975 – Cubs selected Lee Smith in the second round of the draft
1971 – Ken Holtzman pitched his second no-hitter in a 1-0 victory over the Reds at Riverfront Park. Holtzman scored the only run in the game, and it was unearned.