Koyie Hill spelled Chicago Cubs starting catcher Geovany Soto last night, and came up with three hits, bringing his season average up to .318. Soto, by contrast, is hitting just .119.

But there’s no way there’s any kind of catcher controversy, right? I mean, Soto is the reigning Rookie of the Year, and Hill is the reigning…um… guy who couldn’t make the Majors until he was, like, 30… of the year.

Manager Lou Piniella isn’t exactly putting controversy speculation to bed.

”I don’t think [Soto’s struggle] has anything to do with the sophomore slump,” Piniella said, ”but sometimes with a young player, rather than battling it out, you get him out of there to relax, give him a little time to get himself together.” CHICAGO SUN-TIMES.

No, I agree it doesn’t sound like Lou is giving up on Soto or moving the two into a rotation. But it does sound like we’re going to be seeing a whole lot more of Koyie Hill over the next few days, if not weeks. And if he keeps hitting, it could be longer.

For his part, Soto tows the company line.

”All I can say is I’m here ready for whenever he needs me,” said Soto, who said his at-bats have improved over the last week or so and that he feels close to working out of his slump.

Going to be hard to work out of his slump from the bench, but that might be where he has to do it.

  • Nate

    Wow, now a catcher controversy. As I wrote last week, the Cubs have no identity and will not make the playoffs. Start trading guys now.
    It’s not a good sign when two of your biggest off season signings yell at the umpires and blame the umps for their own bad performances (Bradley and Gregg). The owners went to new heights of crapping on the fans this year by tearing apart a team that won 97 games last year.
    It’s not going to get any better this year. Just wait until August when the quotes are: “We have a better team than this. We should be playing better. We are trying to just make it to the playoffs and then see what happens.” When they are in third place trying to make the wild card behind the Cardinals and the Brewers/Astros. But regardless, naive Cub fans will fill up Wrigely Field and keep giving money to the owners and management. Suckers.

    • Ace

      Nate, do you even like the Cubs?

      But as things stand, I don’t really have the heart to fight you. The Cubs suck.

      • Nate

        I have been following the Cubs, and rooting for them, since 1984 when I was a little kid. As I grew older, I realized how the owners milk the fans for money. Letting Maddux go, signing washed up power hitters who hit home runs when the game is out of reach and everyone goes home happy because they saw a home run, not going after the really good pitchers when they are free agents, and the best, oh yes, the best of all: totally ripping apart a team that won 97 games and replacing solid veterans with a bunch of average, at best, and unproven players. You can’t win consistently when you keep tearing a team apart. I know that agents are involved and so on, but another factor, and it’s time for naive Cubs fans to admit this, is that no players really want to play for the Cubs. Why? Because of the FACILITIES. Listen to Zambrano, he said it early on this year when the Cubs played at Yankee stadium. Wrigely Field sucks and it’s time for a modern stadium. What is the only common denominator during the last freaking 8 decades of losing? Not the players, not the coaches, it’s the stadium. It’s like driving a Model T ford in a nascar race. Yes, it’s a classic car and it works, but it isn’t practical. Wrigley Field is not practical. But you just keep spending 80 dollars for one ticket to watch a Triple A team finish in fourth place this year and you will make the owners happy.
        Here is another prediction: Zambrano will be traded sooner than you think because he doesn’t like playing on the sorry ass Cubs and he would do better in a better organization with a real stadium and clubhouse. Lee is halfway out of the door, Soriano could get traded before the deadline, it’s a firesale. Why not, right? I mean, they had to get rid of Derosa because he cost too much, might as well get rid of everyone that was good.
        Do you think outfielders like playing 81 games a year in a park where they have to fear running in to a f***ing brick wall? How many other stadiums have a brick wall, if ever in the history of major league baseball, as the outfield fence? If you really care about the Cubs, then demand a real stadium and then see some winning then. The Tigers, the Giants, the Orioles, the Rangers, the Padres, etc. All after getting new stadiums have successful streaks of winning years because a new, modern, practical stadium gives energy to the team, the fans, and everyone involved.
        Wrigley is horrible. The stupid pony league bullpens with the pitcher’s mound halfway sticking out in fair territory and watching outfielders give up on fly balls because they don’t want to blow their knees out on the bullpen mounds. No foul territory to get more outs. The crazy winds at that stadium. The cubs play 81 games a year there, the visiting teams come in for 6 to 10 games a year and just have fun at Wrigley because they know they are leaving in three days.
        I don’t care. I don’t give my money to that franchise. I am just trying to make the Cubs a winner and it won’t happen until the fans demand a real stadium and real owners.