Maddon expects Rizzo in Cubs' lineup Monday

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Chicago Cubs manager John Maddon expects first baseman Anthony Rizzo to return to the lineup Monday against the St. Louis Cardinals.

Rizzo was put on the disabled list last week with a stiff lower back that he blamed in part on a hotel room bed in Cincinnati.

The weather forecast in Chicago calls for snow showers in the morning and then cloudy conditions with temperatures in the mid-30s at game time (7 p.m. ESPN).

“If he’s ready to roll, we’ll probably play him, I would imagine, but probably watch him,” Maddon told reporters. “[With] Anthony coming back in, [I’ll ask him] in the fifth inning, ‘How are you doing?’ Does he need to be brought back in slowly? I’m not sure. So we’ll just play that by ear.”

Maddon thinks Rizzo looks ready.

“I watched him work out in the gym over there, and he looks fine,” Maddon said. “So I try to trust the guys. I do trust the guys. I ask them questions. When the guys are honest with you, it makes the decision-making so much easier. Mind reading is really difficult.”

To make room on the roster, the Cubs optioned infielder Efren Navarro to Triple-A Iowa Sunday.



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