Kerry Wood has a chance to cement his role as Cubs closer tomorrow
"This will be a real nice test for him, because he'll pitch back-to-back days and three out of four days, and that's as good a test as you can give anybody," Cubs manager Lou Piniella said.
Lou's confidence appears well placed, as Kerry buzzed through one inning today with just eight pitches.
Tomorrow's game is a Spring rematch of Jason Marquis and Greg Maddux. The Cubs kept coming back in today's 10 inning tie against the White Sox, so we can hope for some momentum, perhaps. Winning, they say, is a habit. Time to get into it.
The Cubs line-up is set for 2008, barring a trade. They way Lou talked today in the pre-game with Santo, it sounds like the only concern is the back-up center fielder. But here's how it has been the last few games, and how it will stay until further notice.
Lou commented on Mike Fontenot's Spring during his conversation with Ron, and mentioned how pleased the staff was with Mike's play at short. Nonetheless, it sounds like Cedeno is the utility guy, and Cintron and Fontenot could provide depth from Iowa.
The rest of the pitching staff poses an interesting question. I suspect Rich Hill's meeting with Hendry was more than "relax, no worries". He could end up in Iowa, along with Sean Marshall. Or Hill and Marshall could both make the team, with Sean as the 2nd lefty with Eyre, and Marquis gets traded to keep space for Hill. Or Marshall goes to Iowa, and Lieber slides to the bullpen, with Hill keeping his spot along with Marquis. Or Mark Prior gets traded back and Angel Guzman is ready, miraculously. Whatever happened to Bobby Brownlie?
This week should be interesting, starting with Lou's announcements, expected by Monday morning. The pitching staff will be known. And it ends with what should be a settled roster headed to Las Vegas. Since the only battle is the utility job, and he sounds ready to hand that to Cedeno, I expect no major news after Thursday.
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