All-star first baseman Anthony Rizzo missed his seventh straight game for the Cubs on Monday, and he may be headed for an MRI Tuesday.
Rizzo pulled up lame in the Aug. 26 game at Cincinnati with what the Cubs termed lower-back tightness. He had hoped to play over the weekend in St. Louis, but he missed that series as well as the Labor Day series opener against the Brewers.
"He's still day to day," manager Rick Renteria said. "He's still a little stiff. If it doesn't clear up, maybe we'll get an MRI just to make sure everything's OK. But he's doing fine. We're just limiting him, making sure that once he gets back on the field he doesn't have a setback."
A good step:
Right-hander Jacob Turner earned his first victory as a Cub in Monday's 4-2 win over Milwaukee. In his second start for the Cubs, Turner worked 6⅓ innings and gave up 5 hits and 1 run. His 7 strikeouts tied a career high.
The Cubs obtained the 23-year-old Turner from the Miami Marlins in an Aug. 8 trade. They're hoping he can regain the form that made him a top prospect.
"Obviously, it's a step in the right direction," he said. "I'm just happy that I was able to build upon some of the stuff that me and Bos (pitching coach Chris Bosio) have been working on and made some pitches when I needed to when guys got on base.
"Just with all the young guys we have, you see them having success, and you want to have success, too. Getting that fresh start and kind of resetting after the ups and downs this season for me has been huge."
Opportunity to spoil it:
The Cubs will have a big chance to play spoilers in September with games against contending teams in their own division and with the Dodgers.
"It's just important that they're going to see clubs that you're competing against and you're getting your eyes on the club and see how they're performing," Rick Renteria said. "What is it they're doing? It would be foolish for anyone to face clubs that are doing well and not take a step back and try to understand what's making them tick.
"It's a great test. They need to see it. That's where we want to be. Ultimately, how we take this challenge on for the next month of grinding it out is going to be really, really important, and we can get a lot of knowledge from it."
September call-up time:
The Cubs recalled right-handed reliever Blake Parker from Class AAA Iowa as the Sept. 1 date for roster expansion hit. Renteria said he expects about "a half-dozen call-ups from the minor leagues.