Cubs Notebook also includes DeRosa injuries, Kerry Wood update, Zambrano on track for 20-win season.
New Cubs catcher Jason Kendall, hitting .067 in his first five games with the team, did not start Wednesday night against St. Louis and likely will not start games Friday and Sunday in Cincinnati.
Manager Lou Piniella said he will alternate Kendall and Koyie Hill until Kendall gets on track offensively.
“He’s probably trying (too hard) to impress. We’ll have him work with (hitting coach Gerald Perry), and we’ll see if we can get Kendall’s bat going,” Piniella said. “He has a good track record. He’s had a lot of success.”
Kendall had a career .298 batting average and .375 on-base percentage prior to Oakland trading him to the Cubs on July 16 for catcher Rob Bowen.
Kendall, who hit just .226 with the A’s this season, said he’s fine with sharing time with Hill.
“I’m here to win,” he said. “I’m not worried. I’m scuffling, and I’ve scuffled before.”
Bowen hit just .065 when he was with the Cubs, who acquired him June 20 in the trade that sent Michael Barrett to San Diego. Heading into Wednesday’s action, Bowen was 0-for-2 in one game for the Oakland.
DeRosa banged up
Infielder/outfielder Mark DeRosa did not start Wednesday because of left hamstring tendinitis. He could also miss tonight’s game.
“If we get him back by Friday, I’ll be pleased,” Piniella said.
DeRosa was removed from Tuesday’s game because of the injury. He said the pain started before the game.
“I felt something in (batting practice) and just brushed it off as no big deal and thought it would go away,” DeRosa said. “But then I hit the ground ball and tried to get after it running to first base and it just didn’t feel right. They took me out as a precaution.”
Wood feeling good
General manager Jim Hendry reported that Kerry Wood, who threw one inning for Class A Peoria on Tuesday in a rehab stint, felt “great” Wednesday.
“That’s as important, as we all know, as how he threw,” Hendry said. “And he felt great.”
Wood will throw an inning tonight for Peoria and another Friday — his first back-to-back action. If all goes well, he’ll likely pitch for Double-A Tennessee or Triple-A Iowa before the Cubs consider bringing him to the parent club.
Wood, who will pitch in the bullpen with the Cubs, has been on the disabled list the entire season with tendinitis in his right shoulder.
With a 13-7 record, Carlos Zambrano has a good shot at becoming the first Cubs pitcher since Jon Lieber (2001) to win 20 games in a season.
Not far behind Zambrano is Ted Lilly, who entered Wednesday’s start St. Louis with 10 victories. The last time the Cubs had two 20-game winners in one season was 1969: Hall of Famer Fergie Jenkins (21-15) and Bill Hands (20-14).
Lilly isn’t ready to proclaim history.
“The second 10 are a lot harder to get than the first 10,” he said.
Zambrano’s career high is 16 victories for a season, a total he reached in 2004 and again in ’06. Lilly’s season best is 15 wins, set in 2006 with Toronto.
On the Marq?
Jason Marquis, tonight’s starting pitcher for the Cubs, is seeking just his third victory since May 9. If recent history means anything, he should come away with a win.
Marquis, who was with the Cardinals from 2004-06, is 2-0 against his former team this season. On April 21, he beat St. Louis 6-0 at Wrigley Field. On April 27, he got the win in a 5-3 Cubs victory at Busch Stadium.
Triple-A Iowa’s Eric Patterson had five hits and drove in four runs Tuesday in a 10-3 victory over Colorado Springs. Geovany Soto, who was briefly with the Cubs earlier this month, hit a three-run homer, his 13th of the season, for Iowa.
Right-hander Sean Gallagher, who was up with the Cubs twice this season, allowed one run in four innings in a no-decision.
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