Cubs' Anthony Rizzo blames hotel bed for back issues

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Wednesday, April 11, 2018

The next time the Chicago Cubs are in Cincinnati, first baseman Anthony Rizzo may hit the floor at the team hotel instead of the bed.

Rizzo, who was placed on the 10-day disabled list with back tightness, thinks a hotel bed may have played a part in his back issues.

"I think the next time I go [to Cincinnati], I'll sleep on the floor," Rizzo said. "I just have to take care of myself better."

Rizzo, 28, began experiencing tightness in the area going back to last Monday in Cincinnati. He played through the pain on Thursday before missing the next three games against Milwaukee.

"It's the nature of the back," Rizzo told Kap & Co. on ESPN 1000 on Wednesday. "... It got to the point where it was almost like, 'We've got to let this calm down.'"

Rizzo hopes his back "settles down" now and won't be an issue the rest of the season.

"Usually it's July, August, September," Rizzo said about past back issues. "You mentally grind through it, and as long as you can move, you can play. This is one of those things where we talked and I don't want to be locked up for the entire year.

"Hopefully, we put a nip to it the next five days and don't have to deal with it.''

Cubs manager Joe Maddon hopes the DL stint will take care of the problem, but he would like Rizzo to take fewer swings in batting practice -- just in case.

"I still believe guys swing too much," Maddon told reporters Tuesday. "I came here this morning and I'm hearing cracks of the bat down the hallways in the batting cage. I don't think Billy [Williams] did that, I don't think [Ron] Santo did that, I don't think Ernie [Banks] did that. They probably didn't have a batting cage to do that in.

"With Anthony, I'm trying to convince him to back off -- no pun intended -- a little bit, because swinging too often can exaggerate the issue. If more swings were the answer, everybody would hit .300."

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