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2015 Spring-Training Countdown, Day 29: Doug Dascenzo

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Not the guy you expected to see here, is it?

Sporting News
The player who wore No. 29 for the Cubs for the last seven seasons, Jeff Samardzija, is gone. That's why his picture doesn't adorn this post. Have a look at the entire historical roster of Cub Number 29s:
Bobby Mattick (1938), Kirby Higbe (1938), Barney Olsen (1941), Emil Kush (1946-49), Preston Ward (1950, 1953), Ray Blades (coach, 1953), John Andre (1955), Tom Poholsky (1957), Taylor Phillips (1958), Harry Bright (1965), Byron Browne (1965-67), George Altman (1967), Clarence Jones (1968), Don Young (1969), Tommy Davis (1970), Brock Davis (1970-71), Al Montreuil (1972), Dave Rosello (1973-74), Jim Tyrone (1975), Mike Sember (1978), Steve Davis (1979), Scot Thompson (1981), Bobby Molinaro (1982), Ty Waller (1982), Tom Veryzer (1983-84), Steve Lake (1986), Chico Walker (1986-87), Doug Dascenzo (1988-92), Jose Guzman (1993-94), Robin Jennings (1997, 1999), Jeff Huson (2000), Robert Machado (2001), Fred McGriff (2001-02), Lenny Harris (2003), Josh Paul (2003), Andy Pratt (2004), Rey Ordonez (2004), Ben Grieve (2004), Mike Fontenot (2005), Angel Pagan (2006-07), Jeff Samardzija (2008-14)

Yikes. That's not a list that any of us wants to remember. Samardzija is by far the best player ever to wear No. 29 for the Cubs, and there's only one other player who wore it for more than three years.

That's the guy depicted here, Doug Dascenzo, who was supposed to return to the Cubs as first base/outfield coach in 2015. But when Joe Maddon was hired as manager, creating somewhat of a crunch in the coaching staff, Dascenzo's role was changed to minor-league outfield/baserunning coordinator. That's a step down, of course, but he'll still have valuable input to the system as well as being a spring-training instructor.

Dascenzo was a fan favorite during his five years as a Cubs player, despite mediocre hitting (.240/.301/.300 in 1,070 Cubs at-bats). He stole some bases (47) but was caught too many times to really be effective at it. He was an excellent defensive outfielder and most Cubs fans from his time on the North Side will remember his perfect pitching record -- four appearances, five innings, three hits and two walks allowed, two strikeouts and a perfect 0.00 ERA.

Nice to have Doug back in the fold. Since he won't be a big-league coach this year, No. 29 is currently unassigned. Will anyone wear it this year on a big-league field for the Cubs?