cubs park shoesJake Arrieta Day!

The Cubs’ righty ace (see, they’ve got one of each) makes his Spring debut, something he didn’t do at all last year thanks to a shoulder issue the delayed the start of his year. So this is actually his overall Spring debut in a Cubs uniform. Here’s hoping for two easy, efficient, healthy innings.

Arrieta is expected to be followed by Tsuyoshi Wada, who is trying to win a spot in the Cubs’ rotation, or perhaps land as the Cubs’ swing man in the bullpen.

Today’s game is not available via video, but the audio is on WBBM 780AM, and Gameday Audio (which you can get separately, or get it included with

The Cubs lineup:

  1. Arismendy Alcantara, CF
  2. Tommy La Stella, 3B
  3. Javier Baez, 2B
  4. Ryan Sweeney, RF
  5. Mike Olt, DH
  6. Chris Valaika, 1B
  7. Welington Castillo, C
  8. Junior Lake, LF
  9. Addison Russell, SS

Tommy La Stella gets his first starting crack at third base – recall, he’s just now learning the position, so it’s good for the Cubs to see what they’ve got. Arismendy Alcantara steps in for Dexter Fowler, as he might from time to time this year.

Chris Valaika has been seeing a lot of time so far this Spring, which is interesting. As we saw last year, he does offer nice versatility with decent defense at a range of positions, but the bat is probably fairly limited, even for a bench guy. Ryan Sweeney is trying to win a bench spot in the outfield, which is a weird thing to say about a guy who is under contract, but that’s where things likely stand right now.

Yeah, Addison Russell!