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One of the hallmarks of a good team is the way reserve players step up when one of the regulars is out. And no time could be more important than now, when Sammy Sosa is on the shelf with toe problems (and those who laugh at toe injuries have never had one. I had a broken toe once and the pain is worse than almost anything else I ever had).

So it's gratifying to see Troy O'Leary step up just when the Cubs need him most. He hit a 3-run HR last night, and made a sparkling defensive play, and the Cubs again made quick work of the Brewers, winning 6-1 in a snappy two hour, seventeen minute game. I only hope today's game runs as quickly, but with Kerry Wood starting it probably won't. This is not to disparage Wood, only to comment that he winds up throwing a lot of pitches.

Carlos Zambrano pitched his best game of the season, allowing only three hits and one harmless run, and striking out seven in an efficient 109-pitch, 8-inning outing. That makes four wins in a row, all good performances from the starting rotation, and the club has not lost since Sammy went on the DL. I won't draw any conclusions from this other than to say that the new attitude that Dusty Baker has infused the club with, clearly shows here. This isn't a one-man team, and everybody on the ballclub knows that he can contribute, is expected to contribute, and thus, comes through.

My roadtrip report from Milwaukee will be posted either later this evening or tomorrow morning.