After a very disappointing series against the Houston Astros, it is clear that their are some changes that need to be made. And Alfonso Soriano and Lou Piniella are doing their part to contribute to those changes.
To start, after Soriano collected his 3rd error already on the season, he declared that he will no longer be resorting to the now infamous “hop” that he does before catching the ball. Just as side note, going into play yesterday all the other National League leftfielders had 3 errors combined.
It is not exactly clear on how or why Soriano developed that hop, but what is known is that it does not help what is already a difficult task for Soriano in fielding the ball. So, by eliminating the “hop” Soriano is hoping that will keep him concentrated when fielding the ball.
However, Soriano still will be pulled late in games in favor of Tyler Colvin. Because, even without the hop Soriano is still considered to be a liability in the field for the Cubs.
Lou Piniella will feature a new lineup whenever the Cubs face a left handed pitcher.
As it is drawn up, Theriot will now bat eighth against lefties, while Centerfielder Marlon Byrd will leadoff for the Cubs. Byrd, who previously started two games in the #2 spot for the Cubs has collected 7 hits in that spot.
Jeff Baker will be batting second, and obviously playing Second. It appears that Lou is resorting back to a platoon situation for second base, with Baker now starting against lefties.
And the last change, is that Xavier Nady will be batting fourth and Aramis Ramirez will move down to the #5 spot.
The Cubs are scheduled to face three left handed starters in their upcoming four game series against the New York Mets.
Cubs all star Ted Lilly, will make his first start for the Cubs this Saturday against the Brewers. Lilly will throw one more rehab start tomorrow in Peoria.
This brings up an interesting situation for the Cubs, as they will have to move either Carlos Silva or Tom Gorzelanny to the bullpen, where they are hoping one could potentially be an eighth inning set up guy.
While Silva has looked really impressive as a starter in his first couple of starts, I think both he and the Cubs would be better off if he was in the eighth inning for the Cubs. As given his experience and arsenal, he would be the preferred option over Gorzelanny.