Inside Pitch: Infield Scramble

The Cubs figure to activate shortstop Cesar Izturis from the disabled list either Monday or Tuesday, and they need to figure out what to do with rookie infielder Ronny Cedeno.

Cedeno, who has been subbing for Izturis, likely will move back to second base. However, the Cubs have been impressed with Ryan Theriot's play at second in recent weeks.

Cubs manager Dusty Baker said, "We'll see -- we're in the producing business, and Theriot has done well."

There is a chance that Theriot and Cedeno will get some playing time in the final weeks of the season. While the Cubs like Cedeno for their future, he might need a little time off because he has not been hitting well the past couple of months.

REPLAY: The Cubs will be trying to avoid their second season sweep of the year when they face Atlanta on Monday.

The Cubs already lost an entire season series against San Diego and are 0-6 against the Braves this year with one game to go after Sunday's 2-1 defeat. Rookie Juan Mateo gave up just two runs in seven innings, but it was not enough as the offense continued to sputter.


  • RHP David Aardsma, who is hoping to secure a bullpen job for 2007, struck out four batters in two perfect innings in Sunday's loss to Atlanta.

  • 1B Derrek Lee took his usual every-third-day-off to rest his wrist on Sunday, but this time he was not available for pinch-hitting duties because he was feeling soreness. The Cubs hope he will be available Monday.

  • C Michael Barrett was back with his teammates during the weekend for the first time since he suffered an intrascrotal hematoma after taking a foul ball to the groin on Sept. 4. He likely will be out the rest of the season. "I wouldn't wish this injury on anybody," he said.

  • CF Juan Pierre stole his 50th base of the season Saturday against Atlanta and became the first Cubs player to steal 50 or more since Eric Young in 2000.

  • RHP Wade Miller made his Cubs debut Saturday after missing close to a year of major league time because of shoulder surgery. He lasted just three innings against Atlanta and gave up four runs, including a pair of home runs.

    BY THE NUMBERS: 100 -- Stolen bases the Cubs had racked up when Derrek Lee swiped second in the seventh inning on Sept. 5. It's the first time the Cubs have had 100 or more steals since 1997.

    QUOTE TO NOTE: "What people don't know is one of my legs (the right) is longer than the other. All Zambranos have that. My dad has that. That's one of my problems, too." -- Cubs pitcher Carlos Zambrano, on what might be causing his back pain throughout the past three seasons.


    LHP Ryan O'Malley (strained left elbow) went on the disabled list Aug. 23 and was activated on Sept. 8.

    RHP Carlos Zambrano (back pain) left the game Sept. 4 in the second inning. He had an MRI exam on Sept. 5, and he is day-to-day.

    C Michael Barrett (intrascrotal hematoma) went on the disabled list Sept. 3, a day after he was hit in the groin by a foul tip and underwent surgery. He's likely out for the season.

    SS Cesar Izturis (right hamstring) went on the disabled list Aug. 22. He is expected to be activated Sept. 11 or Sept. 12.

    RHP Mark Prior (right shoulder tendinitis) went on the disabled list retroactive to Aug. 11.

    RHP Kerry Wood (shoulder and knee surgery) went on the disabled list retroactive to June 7. His season ended July 7 when an MRI showed a partial tear in his rotator cuff. He has opted not to have surgery, and he hopes to be ready for spring training.

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