Today the Cubs head to Goodyear (the city, not the tire) to take on the Cleveland Indians. Rodrigo Lopez gets the start today, and he could really make the pitching staff decision difficult with a great start. I say “staff” and not rotation, mind you, because I don’t think he’s got much of a chance to make the rotation no matter how well he pitches. Just the bullpen. Unless, of course, there’s a rash of injuries and/or trades.

The game is at 3:05 CT, and will televised on WGN. The Game Thread is right here. I’m still in Arizona, but I’m actually headed to Salt River Field to check out the Reds and Rockies, so I won’t be seeing the Cubs play today.

Today’s lineup, once again has a healthy mix of regulars and bench candidates:

1. Reed Johnson, RF

2. Blake DeWitt, LF

3. Starlin Castro, SS

4. Alfonso Soriano, DH

5. Bryan LaHair, 1B

6. Geovany Soto, C

7. Ian Stewart, 3B

8. Jeff Baker, 2B

9. Joe Mather, CF

  • gratefulled

    I’m curious to why you are in Arizona and not going to the Cubs game. I’m sure there is good reason, but still I must know why. Scouting? Preference in parks? Better beer and nachos?

    • Brett

      Variety of reasons. Saw Cubs yesterday at Hohokam, have a father-in-law in tow who’s a Reds fan, I like to see other ballparks/other teams, and I’ll see the Cubs plenty of times this year in games that mean a little more. If I were able to stay longer, my Cubs/other team games split would probably be 3 or 4 to 1 in favor of the Cubs. But, since I’m only here for two games, it’s 1:1.

  • gratefulled

    Understandable. Have a great time!

    Father-in-law/Reds fan OUCH!

    • DocWimsey

      Is that considered marrying outside of the faith?

  • jim

    Reed johnson, kerry wood, dejesus…why??? Let me know when rebuild begins!

    • Ryan

      first they don’t want to use the term rebuilding. 2nd to help build a farm system sign low priced vets for a year or to so that your young players can develop and are not rushed to the majors

    • Bric

      Rome wasn’t built in a day. To me the rebuilding has already started with the trading of Z, something the former mgmt was never able to do. He was fined, suspended, moved to the bull pen, briefly retired, suffered a psychotic break, won and later defended a minor belt for water cooler boxing, posed with Ponch in the dug out, personally whacked out Bin Laden (well, that part was good) built a time machine in his bath tub (allegedly), and became best friends with the most anti-Cub racist, douche bag of a manager of all time. And yet with the old management he somehow always managed to keep his job.

      All right I made a couple of those up but trust me, bro, the rebuilding may not have looked like it started yet but it has.

  • Ryan

    BTW Sonniestine elects free agency

  • Jimmy james

    Maybe these are the kind of players they want the young guys to emulate….character, work ethic…and like the other poster said you have to balance rebuild with tryin to be competitve and letting the youngsters figure some things out in aaa

    • Dustin S

      The majority of it I think is the work ethic and character thing, plus although they are re-energizing (I won’t say the other R word) there has to be at least a little mix of some veterans. It might be a bumpy year but they don’t want to go totally all out youth and lose 100 games, to where it ends up doing more harm than good as far as morale and confidence.

      A little surprised about Sonnanstine. I’m guessing he realized he was pretty far down the totem pole though. I would have liked to have seen him stick around at Iowa.