SCOTTSDALE, Arizona -- In this Tribune article, which is mostly about Addison Russell, Joe Maddon talks about how he is seeing his bullpen as a strength:
"You really didn't have to worry about the eighth inning and matching it up," Maddon said. "Justin Grimm is very good against lefties. (Pedro) Strop is good against both sides. So is (closer Hector Rondon). We're actually in the same boat, but I'll probably still be matching up late regarding leverage moments." That means Strop could enter games as soon as the seventh if the Nos. 2-3-4 batters are scheduled to bat.
I like the way Joe talks about doing matchups and "leverage moments," rather than simply locking relievers into specific roles. He did this to some extent last year, and with a deeper pen this year should be able to do more of that.
Here are today's particulars.
Baez SS, Schwarber LF, Bryant 3B, Soler RF, Victorino DH, Ross C, Davis 1B, Perez CF, Negron 2B
Crawford LF, Puig RF, Utley 3B, Ethier DH, Ellis C, Hernandez SS, Thompson CF, Segedin 1B, Johnson 2B
Kyle Hendricks gets the start for the Cubs, his second appearance of the spring, but first start. Others scheduled for the Cubs: Travis Wood, Spencer Patton and Armando Rivero.
Clayton Kershaw goes for the Dodgers. Others on the L.A. pitcher list today: Joe Blanton, Carlos Frias, Pedro Baez and Jacob Rhame.
Today's game is on cubs.com with Len Kasper and Mick Gillispie.
Please visit our SB Nation Dodgers site True Blue LA. If you do go there to interact with Dodgers fans, please be respectful, abide by their individual site rules and serve as a good representation of Cub fans in general and BCB in particular.
Please note that during spring training, Gameday doesn't usually go pitch-by-pitch as it does during the regular season -- usually, it will update after each at-bat.
For spring-training games, we'll have a first-pitch thread at five minutes to game time and one overflow thread, 90 minutes after game time (because I know how you all like overflow threads!). For today, that will be 2 p.m. CT and 3:30 p.m. CT.
These threads will not post individually onto the front page; instead, you can find links to them in the box marked "Chicago Cubs Game Threads" at the bottom of the front page. There will also be a StoryStream on the front page with all the game thread links, as well as the recap after the game is over. The pitcher boxes and regular-season stats will return on Opening Day.
Discuss amongst yourselves.