We’re exactly one week from Opening Day, which feels really strange to say even though it’s obviously true. Having the regular season around the corner means getting less experimental with lineups and stretching starters out, something the Cubs figure to be doing today.
Nico Hoerner will lead off at second against the Diamondbacks, followed by Dansby Swanson at short and Ian Happ in left. Trey Mancini is the DH, Cody Bellinger is in center, and Patrick Wisdom is in right. Eric Hosmer drops down to the seven-hole as the first baseman, which is a much more appropriate spot in the order for him. Edwin Ríos has popped four homers since changing his swing earlier this month and he’ll handle third base while Tucker Barnhart bats ninth behind the plate.
Hayden Wesneski is on the mound for the Cubs in this one and he’ll be looking to rebound from a rough start the last time out. He still looks like the clear-cut candidate to fill the last spot in the rotation, but it sure wouldn’t hurt to have a great performance in what could be his final spring training appearance. He could actually pitch the last Cactus League game on regular rest in order to avoid a long layoff between now and his first real start of the season.
First pitch is set for 3:05pm CT on Marquee Sports Network.
— Chicago Cubs (@Cubs) March 23, 2023