Maddon: Play in which Pirates shortstop hurt was clean
Cubs manager Joe Maddon reiterated Friday that he feels bad for Pittsburgh Pirates shortstop Jung Ho Kang but also repeated the Cubs didn't owe any apologies for Kang getting hurt Thursday.
Kang suffered a torn left MCL and a fractured tibia when the Cubs' Chris Coghlan slid hard into him trying to break up a double play in the first inning of Thursday's game in Pittsburgh. Kang will reportedly be out 6-8 months.
After the game, Maddon said he understood that Kang had suffered plantar fasciitis.
"I only said that based on what I was told," Maddon said before Friday's game against the Cardinals at Wrigley Field. "That was not me making something up. Anybody that thought I was trying to be funny, that's absolutely absurd. I was told that on the field. We were told that on the field.
"When I heard that, I was thinking, 'OK, good. It's not that bad.' I've had players who have had that in the past. That was the initial report we had gotten on the field. Unfortunately that's not true."
Maddon also termed Coghlan's slide a "absolute baseball," and even the Pirates did not seem bothered by the play.
"Believe me, nobody wanted to see that player hurt," Maddon said. "It's going to be a very difficult recovery. He's very important to that team. We do wish him well. It's unfortunate that it happened, but there's no apologies necessary. It was a good baseball play.
"Anybody that wants to go there, you don't know the game, at all. It's a tough game. There's a lot of hard plays out there. The baseball is hard. These guys are in great shape. They run fast. Good major-league baseball players make the game look easy when it's not. That was just a hard play, and it's unfortunate that he got injured."
Moment for Milo:
The Cubs honored late broadcaster Milo Hamilton with a moment of silence before Friday's game. Hamilton, who died this week, most recently was the radio play-by-play man for the Houston Astros.
He worked Cubs games in the early 1980s. He spent time on White Sox radio broadcasts in the 1960s.
Hamilton won the Ford C. Frick Award from the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1992.
Left-hander Travis Wood will start Saturday's game against the Cardinals. Joe Maddon has designated it a "bullpen day," meaning several pitchers will pitch. Wood opened the season in the rotation. He earned a save Thursday in the series finale at Pittsburgh.