With the BP Crosstown Cup taking its talents to the South Side tonight, the Cubs will have the added boost of a designated hitter in their order for the next three days. That should help the offense, but it definitely makes for a crazy lineup:
1. David DeJesus - CF
2. Starlin Castro - SS
3. Bryan LaHair - RF
4. Alfonso Soriano - DH
5. Steve Clevenger - 1B
6. Darwin Barney - 2B
7. Luis Valbuena - 3B
8. Geovany Soto - C
9. Tony Campana - LF
The most interesting thing, of course, is that LaHair is in right field and Clevenger is at first base.
This is odd because LaHair's natural position is first base, Clevenger's natural position is catcher and Soto and Clevenger are the only two catchers the Cubs have, and they're both in the starting lineup.
Clevenger has been hitting the ball well and is capable of playing first base, so that's one thing. The Cubs also figure to try to get Soto as much playing time as possible to showcase him for any potential trades over the next month or so.
With LaHair patrolling right, DeJesus moves to center, and with Soriano at DH, Campana gets a shot at left.
But Campana's speed is a huge asset in the outfield, namely in center. DeJesus is capable of playing all three outfield spots well and LaHair can play either corner spot, which makes the fact Campana is in left all the more curious.
This could be related to Anthony Rizzo, believe it or not. The slugging first baseman appears to be close to a call-up with the big-league club and once that does happen, LaHair would figure to move to the outfield.
Soriano has locked down left and DeJesus has played very well, so he wouldn't lose his spot anytime soon. But if both LaHair and Soriano are taking the corner outfield spots, DeJesus would have no choice but to move to center, so this could be a tune-up game for him.
This is Soto's first game action in over a month, since he went on the disabled list with a knee injury. Welington Castillo was sent down to Triple-A to make room for Soto on the big-league roster.