cubs park shoesThe Cubs are expecting the Dodgers and a sellout crowd today at Cubs Park after an off-day on Thursday. The game will be on MLB.tv for those of you who have it, or you can listen to audio of the game on Cubs.com. I assume Yasiel Puig and Luis Valbuena will have a bat-flip-off at some point.

If you miss the live broadcast, it’ll be replayed tonight at 8pm CT on MLB Network.

Pitching prospect Kyle Hendricks (he of the great Sahadev Sharma piece yesterday) gets the start for the Cubs today, and, although the Cubs have said they fully expect him to begin the year in the AAA Iowa rotation, it’s become just a tiny bit acceptable to wonder if he’s got a shot at winning the 5th starter job, at least for a start or two until Jake Arrieta is ready. I still think it’s unlikely, particularly when you consider that guys like Carlos Villanueva and James McDonald are expected to break camp with the team anyway, and a guy like Chris Rusin is already on the 40-man roster. But, hey, it’s conceivable at this point.

Today’s lineup features Darwin Barney back at second base, with Donnie Murphy getting his fill-in chance at shortstop. Emilio Bonifacio handles center field, and, aside from the DH and the injured Starlin Castro, this is a fairly plausible regular-season lineup. Back-up catcher George Kottaras starts behind the plate.



Lineup:

  1. Emilio Bonifacio, CF
  2. Ryan Sweeney, DH
  3. Nate Schierholtz, RF
  4. Anthony Rizzo, 1B
  5. Justin Ruggiano, LF
  6. Luis Valbuena, 3B
  7. Donnie Murphy, SS
  8. George Kottaras, C
  9. Darwin Barney, 2B

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