Just when it was looking like Koyie Hill’s hitting might overcome Paul Bako’s veteran-ness, and land him the backup catcher job (saving the Chicago Cubs some $350k in the process – not that that matters…), the Bako turned it on yesterday against the Oakland A’s.

4 for 4, 3 RBI and a homer.


Of course, almost every Cub had a huge day yesterday – it tends to happen when you score 20 – but the single game performance took Bako’s rate stats (average, OBP, slugging) into the same range as Koyie Hill’s.

Does it matter? Maybe not. Lou Piniella indicated a week or more ago that he already knew who was going to win the job (which, of course, begs the question… why not just say who it is?). Despite the gaudy Spring Training numbers, neither guy is going to hit worth a hoot. So, for me, it has to come down to leadership, mentorship, defense, and most importantly, the ability to handle the pitching staff. Hill has already proved he can do the latter effectively.

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