Maddon plans to get lineup out to players sooner

                                                                                                                                                                                                   
  • The Cubs' Jon Lester throws during a spring training baseball workout Friday, Feb. 15, in Mesa, Ariz. Manager Joe Maddon hasn't said who the starting pitcher will be opening day, but there's a good chance it'll be Lester on the mound at Texas on March 28.

    The Cubs' Jon Lester throws during a spring training baseball workout Friday, Feb. 15, in Mesa, Ariz. Manager Joe Maddon hasn't said who the starting pitcher will be opening day, but there's a good chance it'll be Lester on the mound at Texas on March 28. Associated Press

 
 
Updated 2/21/2019 6:37 PM

MESA, Ariz. -- Every baseball player likes to know when and if he's going to be in the lineup. Chicago Cubs manager Joe Maddon said Thursday he plans to expand on how he communicates that.

"I normally worked a game in advance with everybody," Maddon said. "We play tonight. By the time you get home tonight, you'll know if you're playing tomorrow or not. We'll text the lineups out for the next day.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

"This year I'm going to make a solid attempt to put series out at a time. I don't know if that's going to work well or not because a guy might be upset for two days knowing he's not going to play until the third. You don't know how this is all going to play out. But it's there. This is how we're going to play it. If you don't like it, come see me."

Pitching plans:

Joe Maddon isn't ready to reveal his opening-day starting pitcher for March 28 at Texas, but Jon Lester is a good bet.

"If I were to say that, it means I have circumvented the other guys and not told them first exactly what thought was going on," he said with a smile. "I try not to reveal things via the press -- I don't think I do -- that I need to talk to the players about first."

Maddon did say that Tyler Chatwood will start the second Cactus League game, Sunday against the Giants in Scottsdale. Jen-Ho Tseng will start Saturday's opener against the Brewers at Sloan Park.

Chatwood, who lost his rotation spot last year because of control problems, will be stretched out as a starter this spring, according to Maddon.

Look for the regular rotation starters to see action next week.

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Rain not wreaking havoc:

Thursday's all-day rain wiped out almost all of the outdoor activities, but the Cubs were able to get things done under cover. Joe Maddon said they have not been set back too much by the cold and wet start to spring training.

"Not horribly," he said. "Just to get on the field, obviously. I wanted to get to the bunting a little bit sooner."

Montgomery progressing:

Left-hander Mike Montgomery is progressing from an early dead-arm period. The Cubs say the versatile Montgomery is not injured and that he's scheduled to play long-toss Friday and do a bullpen session soon. Montgomery worked in 38 games last year, 19 starts, going 5-6 with a 3.99 ERA.

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