Kris Bryant, Ben Zobrist return to lineup for Cubs

ByBradford Doolittle ESPN logo
Saturday, April 28, 2018

CHICAGO -- TheCubswill welcome back a pair of regulars on Saturday, with Kris BryantandBen Zobristreturning to the lineup against theMilwaukee Brewers.

Bryant has missed four games after being hit in the head by a pitch from the Rockies'German Marquezlast Sunday.

"I feel good. The last few days, it felt good to do full baseball stuff," said Bryant, who leads the National League in hit by pitches with seven.

"You can't get out of the way of a ball that close. It was going to hit me one way or another, and I was just doing my best to get out of the way.Could have been a lot worse, so I'm feeling pretty thankful for that and to only miss four games."

Bryant, who wouldn't go into specifics about the diagnosis or symptoms of his injury, said he'll now wear a C-flap helmet to provide extra protection.

"You take this stuff seriously," Bryant said. "Especially nowadays, you see with the football players, I needed to take it easy and not go out there and try to be Mr. Tough Man, play and get hit again."

Bryant said the Rockies outfielder Carlos Gonzalez called to apologize on behalf of Marquez, who doesn't speak English.

"He called over and said [Marquez] really wanted to say he was sorry," Bryant said. "I really appreciated that."

The Rockies will visit Wrigley Field for a series beginning Monday.

Zobrist was activated Saturday from the 10-day disabled list after recovering from back tightness. To clear a roster spot for Zobrist, the Cubs optioned infielderDavid Boteto Triple-A Iowa.

While Bryant and Zobrist are returning to the lineup, they will be slotted in unfamiliar spots on Joe Maddon's batting order. Bryant, who typically has hit second during his career, will hit third against Milwaukee. Zobrist, whom Maddon often deploys in either the leadoff or cleanup spot, will hit seventh.

The top two hitters in the lineup -- Albert Almora Jr. and Javier Baez -- are both working on 10-game hitting streaks for the Cubs, who have won seven of their past 10 games.

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