The best baseball viewing at Wrigley Field on Saturday?
That would have been the Jackie Robinson West Little League team winning the national championship. During the three-hour, nine-minute rain delay of the Cubs' game against the Baltimore Orioles, fans were able to watch the LLWS game between Chicago's Jackson Robinson West and a team from Nevada on the small screens in the stands.
(A "Jumbotron" would have made the communal experience more fun, but the Cubs are a ways from that.)
After big plays, fans at Wrigley Field cheered loudly for Jackie Robinson West. After the Chicago kids clinched a spot in the world-championship game, the cheers got even louder.
Cubs manager Rick Renteria was asked early in the day about the excitement Jackie Robinson West has created in the Chicago area.
"It's pretty cool," he said. "I know everybody's kind of keeping their eye on it a little bit. It's pretty exciting. We're very excited for them. We wish them well. They've been battling the whole year.
"These kids are inspiring. They're having a lot of fun. You see when they take the losses how emotionally they carry it with them. But they're enjoying themselves. They're showing a lot of sportsmanship in the Little League World Series this year with everybody.
"It's good to see kids enjoying playing the game of baseball. It's something that over time people have talked about baseball not having as many kids wanting to play, but I think the way the coverage has been going and the way these kids have been performing and the interest that the world has been taking in it has been good for baseball."
The Cubs had the game on in the clubhouse during the rain delay.
"That was actually a really fun game to watch," said reliever Justin Grimm, who got the win in the Cubs' 7-2 victory over Baltimore. "It was going back and forth a lot. We were in here having fun with it."
Right fielder Justin Ruggiano was a late lineup scratch because of what the Cubs said was left-ankle soreness. Ryan Sweeney replaced him.
Relief pitcher Brian Schlitter was set to move his injury rehab from Arizona to Class AAA Iowa on Saturday. Schlitter, a Park Ridge resident, has been on the disabled list since Aug. 9 with right-shoulder inflammation.
The Cubs get an off-day Monday after playing 20 games in 20 days and 33 games in 34 days. When they resume Tuesday in Cincinnati, their starting-rotation order will be Travis Wood, Jacob Turner and Jake Arrieta. Turner is taking the spot of the injured Edwin Jackson.
From there, the Cubs will travel to St. Louis for four games, including a doubleheader Saturday. Left-hander Felix Doubront is expected to come off the DL to pitch in one of the Saturday games. Doubront, obtained in a trade from Boston last month, is rehabbing a left-calf strain.