The hits keep on coming for the Chicago Cubs. While the Cubs received positive news on Matt Garza, Andrew Cashner, and Marlon Byrd regarding their injuries, they faced yet another injury. Reed Johnson was not in the lineup yesterday, normally not so significant, but considering it was against a left handed pitcher, speculation began about whether or not Johnson was injured.
The Cubs are no strangers to Johnson’s back issues, as the constant struggles with his back is what led to his departure from Cubs after the 2009 season. Since Johnson suffered a herniated disc in 2007, he always struggled with back issues. In fact when the Cubs signed Johnson this past winter, many wondered how long it would be until his back problems flared up again. Well apparently the back issues have reached a point where Johnson needed some extra time off. The Cubs placed Johnson on the 15 day disabled list due to a back related injury.
This injury has added significance for the Cubs, as with Byrd on the disabled list, Johnson was filling in as the temporary starter in center field. Now, Lou Montanez and Tony Campana figure to be the two players getting majority of the starts in place of Byrd and Johnson. Though, Kosuke Fukudome may shift over to center field seeing as the Cubs called up Brad Snyder in place of Johnson. Fukudome starting in center field would then allow the Cubs to give Snyder a chance to start in right field. But for now at least, Campana is the likely candidate to get most of the starts in center field.
Snyder was hitting .342/.374/.568 with 7 home runs with the Iowa Cubs before his call up.
- Geovany Soto has been activated off the disabled list, and Wellington Castillo has been sent down. The Cubs still do not know what they have in Castillo, as Koyie Hill received most of the starts in place of Soto.