Addison Russell leaves Cubs game early after hit in head with pitch


MILWAUKEE - When it rains, it pours for the Cubs, apparently.

A team that's already dealing with the loss of Javy Baez, Kris Bryant and closer Craig Kimbrel will have to play the remainder of the game Sunday without Addison Russell.

Russell took a 94 mph fastball to the face in the top of the third inning:

He remained on the ground for several minutes and was checked over by the medical staffs from both teams, but ultimately remained in the game after running a couple sprints down the right-field line.

Russell immediately stole second on the first pitch after the delay and then came around to score a few pitches later on David Bote's single.

But after the offensive inning, it was Bote heading out to shortstop with Ian Happ taking over at third base and Russell out of the game.

After it was announced Baez would miss the next few weeks with a broken thumb, Joe Maddon expected Russell to play almost every inning at shortstop down the stretch, with Bote as the backup.

Beyond that, the Cubs' shortstop depth chart is unknown, but Maddon mentioned Ben Zobrist as a possibility. Zobrist has played 235 big-league games at shortstop, but has only appeared there six times in four years for the Cubs, totaling 13 innings.

At 38 and after missing four months on personal leave, it would be surprising if the Cubs stuck with Zobrist for any length of time at shortstop. After him, Happ figures to be in the mix, though Tony Kemp and Daniel Descalso were taking grounders at the position prior to Saturday's game.

Addison Russell leaves Cubs game early after hit in head with pitch originally appeared on NBC Sports Chicago


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