Chicago Cubs News

What Could Be Worse Than Soriano Leading Off?


How about Kosuke Fukudome batting second?  Yes, that’s the plan according to Lou Piniella.  “He looks wonderful,” Piniella said of the much-maligned outfielder, who is currently playing in the WBC with Team Japan. “He’s in really good shape. I told him we’re holding a spot for him, and we’ll put him out in center field and we’ll try him in the No. 2 hole in the lineup.

“He said he’s been working hard. He’s excited about this World Baseball Classic and afterwards, he’s looking forward to joining us.”

I know Fukudome has a reputation for being disciplined at the plate, but what I saw last year was a guy who couldn’t handle the major league slider, and struck out swinging a whole heck of a lot (not a great attribute for a #2 hitter, especially if he’s hitting behind another guy who tends to go through streaks of making zero contact).  Fortunately, if the platoon remains in effect, he’ll only be in part of the time, with Reed Johnson getting the remainder of the starts.  Johnson batting second, I like.