It will be slightly warmer tonight at Wrigley Field with the wind blowing out hard as the Cubs and Edwin Jackson take on Edinson Volquez and the Padres. Hang with us tonight even as you flip between the Cubs and Blackhawks. Let’s do a few leftovers from last night and get to our minor-league report below.
Manager Dale Sveum said last night the infield defense is indeed better with Gold Glove second baseman Darwin Barney back in there.
U.S. Rep. Brad Schneider's campaign is circulating a fundraising email suggesting that the Deerfield Democrat's 2012 election opponent, Republican Robert Dold of Kenilworth, is going to take another shot in 2014.
It's pretty direct: "We just got word that former Republican Congressman Bob Dold has decided to run again."
Here's the thing. The National Republican Campaign Committee says he hasn't decided yet.
"The NRCC is hopeful Mr. Dold will make a decision in the coming days to run for his seat again in 2014," said NRCC spokeswoman Katie Prill.
It wouldn't be a shock if Dold made the run. The race for the 10th Congressional District in Lake and Cook counties was the closest race in the suburbs in 2012. And any number of factors could tip it in either direction.
Patrick Kane’s playoff mullet is back.
And he persuaded Blackhawks rookie teammate Brandon Saad to get one too.
“We got them yesterday,” Kane said. “It was one of those things I didn’t know if I was going to do, but I think when push came to shove it was kind of something fun to do for playoffs. I think a lot of my friends and people around the organization wanted me to do it for the playoffs. It’s something fun to do.”
Kane and Saad each have the razor cuts on the side.
“Saad’s is looking good too,” Kane said. “Hopefully we’ll have some time to let it grow.”
Saad said he had a mullet a couple years ago in juniors for the playoffs.
We’ll update things as we go today, as the Cubs return home to face the San Diego Padres at Wrigley Field. It’s a warm afternoon with the wind blowing out. On the field today, closer Kyuji Fujikawa was getting set to throw a bullpen session. He is due to come off the disabled list today, but he’ll need a couple of rehab appearances before being activated.
In the minor leagues, Class A Daytona manager Dave Keller benched phenom Jorge Soler for Sunday’s game after Soler twice failed to run hard Saturday.
Center Dave Bolland and goalie Ray Emery were ruled out of Tuesday’s playoff opener against Minnesota because of lower body injuries.
“We’re going to rule them out for tomorrow and say day-to-day, both with lower bodies,” coach Joel Quenneville said after Monday’s practice at the United Center. “We’re hopeful they’re going to be back on the ice real soon. We expect them on the ice real soon.”
Henrik Karlsson will back up starter Corey Crawford against the Wild in Game 1 while Michal Handzus continues in his role as second line center in place of Bolland between Patrick Kane and Patrick Sharp.
Kirk Hinrich wore a walking boot at this morning's Bulls shootaround in Manhattan, telling reporters he woke up this morning and couldn't put any weight on his injured left leg.
According to coach Tom Thibodeau, Hinrich suffered a bruised calf during Saturday's Game 4. It's unclear when Hinrich may be ready to play again.
With a 3-1 lead in this first-round playoff series, the Bulls could close out the Brooklyn Nets tonight at the Barclays Center (6 p.m., CSN).
Hinrich played just under 60 minutes in Saturday's 142-134 triple-overtime victory. He's done a nice job of shadowing Nets point guard Deron Williams in this series, though Williams scored 32 points in Game 4.
The Bulls went 7-15 this season in games Hinrich did not play.
It's probably a good thing manager Robin Ventura decided not to have a regular batting practice session this morning at U.S. Cellular Field.
Somebody probably would have gotten hurt.
That's just they way it's been going for the White Sox during the first month of the season.
As expected, starting pitcher Gavin Floyd was officially placed on the 15-day disabled list today with a flexor muscle strain in his right arm.
Hector Santiago moves from the bullpen to the rotation and takes Floyd's spot, and Deunte Heath was recalled from Class AAA Charlotte to replace Santiago in the bullpen.
Considering the flexor muscle runs through the elbow, Floyd's injury could have been much worse.
The Blackhawks will play the Minnesota Wild in the first round of the Stanley Cup playoffs.
That was decided on Saturday when the Wild beat Colorado 3-1 in Denver.
Detroit clinched the seventh seed by winning 3-0 at Dallas and will play Anaheim in round one.
Columbus was left out in the cold despite beating Nashville 3-1. The Blue Jackets finished tied with Minnesota in points but lost the tiebreaker.
On one side, you have White Sox broadcaster Ken “Hawk” Harrelson, who utterly loathes baseball sabermetrics.
“Numbers are the most overrated thing in baseball,” Harrelson complained on MLB Network Thursday. “The more numbers you have, the more information you put in the game, the more instincts you take out of the game."
“On the other side, you have your sabermetric supporters, including FanGraphs, Baseball Prospectus and WSCR radio’s Dan Bernstein.
So, which side are you on?
I’m going to side with Paul Konerko.
Before batting practice this afternoon, I asked the Sox’ captain for his opinion on the issue, which includes Hawk’s “TWTW” (The Will to Win).
Center Dave Bolland, one of the Blackhawks' most important playoff performers, will be ready for the postseason despite missing the last two games with a lower body injury.
Bolland will sit out Friday's home finale against Calgary and also won't play Saturday in St. Louis.
"He should be fine," Hawks coach Joel Quenneville said when asked about Bolland's availability for the playoffs.
Quenneville hinted that Bolland could be centering the third line when he returns since Michal Handzus has played so well on the second line with Patrick Kane.
"Sometimes those decisions are made for us based on their play whether we need changes or not," Quenneville said.