After an offseason full of talk of big name first basemen and a trade for a potential superstar in Anthony Rizzo, Bryan LaHair survived the spring and emerged from spring training as the starting first baseman for the 2012 Chicago Cubs.
At 29, it’s the first time LaHair has made an Opening Day roster, after pummeling pitchers at Triple A last year, to the tune of 38 home runs.
All set to make his season debut after finally picking things up late in the spring, a nagging back injury held LaHair out of the Opening Day lineup that forced Jeff Baker into the batting order, leaving a black hole in the spot since the Cubs weren’t facing a lefty.
LaHair will likely miss Saturday’s game as well, but should be ready to go by Sunday’s series finale against the Washington Nationals.
We’re still not exacly sure what the Cubs are going to get out of Bryan LaHair in his first official season in the bigs. Hopefully this isn’t an issue that palgues him all season and his return Sunday marks the end of these issues. Not only because I’d like to see what he can do, but it gets Jeff Baker away from the starting lineup.
Should this turn into something that requires a stint on the disabled list, it would be interesting to see what the Cubs would do in the situation. The chances Rizzo would be recalled would be next to zero, but I’d much rather see Dale Sveum trot Joe Mather out there, rather than Baker.