Joe Maddon On Keys To Sparking Cubs’ Offense: Accept Walks, Use Whole Field

(CBS) Much criticism has engulfed Cubs manager Joe Maddon’s tactical decisions in a National League Championship Series that his team trails 2-0 to the Dodgers.

Asked about his view in that regard ahead of Game 3 on Tuesday evening, Maddon responded, “We’ve been fine.”

His focus is elsewhere, namely on helping spark a Cubs offense that’s scored a combined three runs in the first two games of the NLCS and only drawn two walks in that stretch.

“We have to stay in our lanes,” Maddon said on the Spiegel and Parkins Show on 670 The Score on Tuesday afternoon. “I keep using that phrase, meaning we have to accept our walks. And the other part of it is we have to utilize the whole field. Because again, their lefties, for example like (Rich) Hill the other night, if you really get into pull mode with your right-handers, you’re playing right into his hands.”

Maddon will adjust his lineup a bit in Game 3. He confirmed that veteran Ben Zobrist will be in the Cubs’ lineup, though Maddon wouldn’t say whether he’d be in the outfield or at second base. The lefty-swinging Kyle Schwarber is a near lock to start in left field as Dodgers turn to right-hander Yu Darvish. Cubs second baseman Javier Baez has been mired in a wicked slump, going 0-for-19 this postseason, so Zobrist could replace him.

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