Chicago Cubs right fielder Seiya Suzuki scratched from Cactus League opener because of left oblique tightness
The Chicago Cubs are dealing with their first injury issue.
Right fielder Seiya Suzuki was scratched from the lineup with left oblique tightness before the start of Saturday’s Cactus League opener at Sloan Park. No. 2 prospect Brennen Davis replaced Suzuki in the lineup, batting ninth in a 10-8 win against the San Francisco Giants.
Suzuki is under further evaluation. The Cubs are not expecting any updates on his status until Sunday.
Suzuki reported to camp bulked up, adding 20 pounds to his 5-foot-11 frame after spending the offseason focusing on better preparing his body for the grind of a 162-game season.
Suzuki’s oblique tightness could jeopardize him playing in the World Baseball Classic. He was supposed to leave camp to join Team Japan, which opens pool play in Tokyo. Its WBC opener is less than two weeks away, slated for March 9 versus China.
Cubs set Cactus League attendance record
The sunny, 69-degree day served as an ideal backdrop for the Cubs spring opener.
Sloan Park was packed Saturday with Cubs fans getting treated a lineup featuring most of their projected starters, including the team debuts of Dansby Swanson, Cody Bellinger, Eric Hosmer and Trey Mancini. The Cubs set a Cactus League record for single-game attendance with 16,152 fans.
The Cubs also held the previous record (16,100), which they set March 25, 2019, against the Boston Red Sox.
Cubs honor daughter of team scout
Cubs players, coaches and staff sported a different look during morning workouts Saturday before their spring opener.
Team personnel wore gray T-shirts emblazoned with “Mighty Maeve Fight Club” in honor of Cubs pro scout Alex McClure’s 1-year-old daughter, Maeve. She died about one month ago after a battle with holoprosencephaly, a fatal brain disorder. McClure, his wife and their two daughters spent time around the team Saturday. When McClure worked as a regional scout for the organization, he was responsible for the Cubs drafting and signing pitchers Ethan Roberts and Keegan Thompson.
“We’re all family here, this whole organization, and when a family member loses someone close to them, the emails have been out for weeks trying to support Alex and his family and the things they’ve been going through,” Ross said. “To show them a little bit of love and support, trying to help any way we can and show them how much they’re a part of the family.”