Major League Baseball
Reds-Cubs preview
Major League Baseball

Reds-Cubs preview

Updated Mar. 4, 2020 8:56 p.m. ET

CHICAGO -- Kris Bryant was back in the Chicago Cubs' lineup Tuesday and apparently OK after an outfield collision 24-hours earlier that left him with a leg bruise.

The run-in with Albert Almora Jr. while both pursued a fly ball also prompted an admonishment from Cubs manager Joe Maddon to be more watchful in the future.

"I didn't like it, I didn't like it at all," Maddon told said. "When a player is camped, there's no reason to run a player off. ... It happens to every team throughout the course of the season, but I would like it not to happen again."

The versatile Bryant has played in 31 games in the outfield this season, but was back at his normal third base spot Tuesday.


He is not a player the Cubs could afford to lose for any significant part of the season, a worry Bryant himself shared when talking about how the Cubs lost Kyle Schwarber for the season in an April 7 outfield collision with Dexter Fowler.

"I was just kind of scared about the knee at first," Bryant said Tuesday. "I'm feeling better today, a lot better, nothing to prevent me from playing. I think I got lucky. Things could have been a lot worse."

Bryant, voted in as an All-Star Game starter, felt so good that he clubbed his major-league-leading 25th home run of the season in the third inning Tuesday during the Cubs' 9-5 loss to the Cincinnati Reds.

He is batting .278 with 64 RBIs, 19 doubles and a .578 slugging percentage.

In the series finale Wednesday, Bryant will be batting against a pitcher who finally made his season debut last month after sustaining a spring training injury, and he will be fielding behind a pitcher who hasn't seen a lot of action as a starter.

Chicago right-hander Adam Warren (3-1, 4.56 ERA) will be called up to make a spot start -- his first in a Cubs uniform -- after two outings at Triple-A Iowa.

He was acquired by the Cubs from the Yankees in December as part of a trade that sent Starlin Castro to New York. Warren began the season in Chicago and made 25 relief appearances before being optioned to Iowa on June 21.

Warren's return is part of Maddon's strategy to give his staff a breather during on ongoing run of 24 games in 24 days heading into the All-Star break.

Reds right-hander Anthony DeSclafani, meanwhile, will be making only his sixth appearance and start this season.

He started 31 times for the Reds last year, but he spent much of this season on the disabled list with a strained left oblique that occurred in a final spring training appearance.

DeSclafani (2-0, 1.78 ERA) went on to make late-April rehab starts for Double-A Pensacola and Class A Dayton before he felt soreness again in the muscle. He didn't make another rehab appearance until May 25, the first of three outings for Triple-A Louisville.

He was activated off the disabled list on June 10 and made his season debut that night against the Oakland A's, working six innings of one-run ball but getting no decision in a 2-1 Reds victory.

DeSclafani worked just 2 2/3 innings in his next outing on June 16 at Atlanta and also had a no-decision.

Everything clicked in his third outing, when he pitched seven innings and struck out six in an 8-2 win over the Texas Rangers. He then tossed a career-high eight innings on June 26 against the San Diego Padres in a 2-0 win.

DeSclafani wasn't involved in the decision in his most recent start, Friday at Washington, when he worked 6 2/3 innings of two-run ball, striking out eight while walking two.


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