Chicago Sun-Times
with sports reporters Chris De Luca and Gordon Wittenmyer

Theriot wins Cubs leadoff job

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With three weeks left until Opening Day, it looks like Ryan Theriot will be the Cubs' leadoff hitter in an everyday lineup that manager Lou Piniella says is about ``80 percent'' set:

SS Theriot
RF Kosuke Fukudome
1B Derrek Lee
3B Aramis Ramirez
CF Marlon Byrd
LF Alfonso Soriano
2B Mike Fontenot
C Geovany Soto

Piniella said the second base battle between Fontenot and Jeff Baker hasn't been finalized, but Fontenot's in the clear lead, and Piniella wants to make a decision within the next two weeks.

But the leadoff spot looks settled at this point - and Piniella said he doesn't plan to use any kind of lefty-righty platoon with Theriot and Fukudome.

``I don't think so,'' he said. ``I think we'll stay the way I said. If Theriot doesn't play, then we can always move Fukudome to the one hole.''

The Cubs' leadoff spot has been a point of contention since Piniella became the Cubs manager in 2007 with 40-40 free agent Soriano arriving with him as the $136 million leadoff hitter.

Soriano remained the Cubs' leadoff hitter through two playoff appearances and through much of the first half of last season - until his lengthy slump and inability to run like he did earlier in his career prompted a move to the No. 6 spot.

Theriot, Fukudome and Reed Johnson got most of the leadoff starts after that.


--The Cubs skipped batting practice after they lost 45 minutes to a broken-down bus on the way to Tucson. Something to do with a ``generator hose,'' Piniella said.

--Ted Lilly, who has been on a rehab program coming off November shoulder surgery, is expected to start facing hitters in live BP - the final step before pitching in spring games - soon after he returns to camp Thursday following the birth of his first child. His son's name: Theodore Roosevelt Lilly IV.

--Backup shortstop Andres Blanco, who sprained his knee a little over a week ago, is expected to return to action by the weekend.

--Ramirez (sore triceps) and Lee (bruised foot) are both expected to get one more day off before returning to the lineup Thursday when the Cubs return from a day off.

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With Ramirez, Lee & Soriano we are counting on three aging injury prone guys. This lineup is not nearly as good as some would think and defensively they giveaway runs rather then take them away.

Great to see "Sweet Lou" come out with the line up. I know Theriot is a great fit for the spot. Derek Lee is up next year, hopefully this time next year, we have a Pujlos in that sport.


I really dont like Fontenot at 2nd !!!!

That lineup is good for 3rd or 4th in the division.

Where can I pick up my world series tickets?

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This page contains a single entry by Gordon Wittenmyer published on March 15, 2010 2:57 PM.

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