The lineup is the big news today, with Soriano hitting sixth. And Lou says he's going to stick with it for a while.
"We're going to see if we can get Sori jump-started," Lou said in his office this morning. "We moved him to the sixth hole, where he doesn't have to concern himself with trying to get on base or running. Let him swing the bat. Hopefully he starts hitting the ball with some power for us and driving in some runs."
"We're going to stay with this thing for a while."
Lou called Soriano a "team guy" and a "good man."
For his part, Soriano seemed OK with it all.
"Sixth is fine," he said right after we talked to Lou. "I know I'm not doing my job batting leadoff. I hope that whoever is batting leadoff does a better job than what I am doing to help the team win. That's the key."
Soriano agreed that the move may take some pressure off. He added that he learned from playing for the Yankees not to hang his head about such things.
I know there's not a lot of affection for Soriano among fans right now, but he conducts himself in a professional and friendly manner when dealing with reporters every day.
Lou said he chose Fukudome to bat leadoff because of his .380 on-base percentage.
On to other things:
--Lou says one solution to Monday's impending roster crunch is to get to to 11 pitchers instead of 12. That would mean just one position player would have to be sent out when Aramis Ramirez, Reed Johnson and pitcher Angel Guzman come off the DL Monday. Jeff Baker and Andres Blanco are going to stay, meaning Mike Fontenot, Jake Fox, Micah Hoffpauir and Sam Fuld will be watching things nervously here the next couple days as will pitchers Kevin Hart and Jeff Samardzija.
--Guzman tossed 1.1 scoreless innings last night for Iowa in his final rehab tuneup. He walked one and struck out one.
--If you were out at Kane County with the big crowd last night, you saw Ramirez go 1-for-2 with a walk, a double and 2 runs for Peoria. Johnson was 1-for-2 with a run scored. They'll play against Beloit today and tomorrow in Peoria.