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No-News Monday: Cubs vs. Diamondbacks at Mesa, Monday 3/2, 2:05 CT

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The Cubs prepare for several players to leave for the WBC; Carlos Zambrano won't be one of them, and he will make his first spring start today. Carlos Marmol will be one of the WBC departees, but he will put an inning's worth of work into today's game. Also expect to see Alfonso Soriano, Derrek Lee and Aramis Ramirez back in the lineup today.

They'll be facing Arizona's Dan Haren, who threw seven good innings in his only 2008 game against the Cubs last May 9 in a game the Cubs won 3-1. It will be the Diamondbacks' only appearance in Mesa this spring, but even with that, the fact that this game will be on a Monday before spring break, will probably keep attendance down (the current HoHoKam Park average after three dates is 9,212).

In this Carrie Muskat article about Ryan Dempster, she relates this quote:

There is a slight difference between this spring and last, which was Dempster's first in the rotation after three seasons as the Cubs closer.

"I think last year, I pitched on March 3," Dempster said. "This year, it's March 1, so I'm a little ahead of schedule."

Um, Carrie? Dempster's a jokester. I think he was kidding. You took it seriously. Two days' difference? Hardly worth mentioning. I think Ryan was pulling your chain.

Meanwhile, the Diamondbacks are investigating several new possible spring training sites, including the cities of Phoenix, Mesa and Casa Grande in their search.

There is no audio or TV for today's game. Here's's Gameday link. There will be an overflow thread, if you need it, posted at 3:30 pm CST.

Discuss amongst yourselves.