Colvin not taking anything for granted
Outfielder likely to make Cubs after impressive spring
TUCSON -- Clemson will be playing Georgia in college baseball April 6, when the Cubs just happen to be in Atlanta for the first series of the regular season.
Cubs infielder Jeff Baker asked Tyler Colvin if he wanted Baker to get tickets for the two of them.
"I said, 'Whoa, hold off on that,'" Colvin said Thursday. "We don't know what's going to happen. I'm just going to keep doing what I'm doing and we'll see what happens."
Baker knows his own job on the Cubs' Opening Day roster is secure. Colvin says he won't believe his is until he's actually on the team plane headed to Atlanta.
The outfielder has been impressive this spring and began play third in the Cactus League in batting. Against the D-backs Thursday, he went 2-for-4 to raise his batting average this spring to .444.
"Colvin has played well enough to make this team," Cubs manager Lou Piniella said Wednesday. "The concern is we don't want this young man to make this team and just sit. So, if he's on our Opening Day roster, he's going to get some playing time. He's just not going to sit."
Colvin, the Cubs' 2006 No. 1 Draft pick, will do whatever he's asked.
"My thoughts are I want to help this team any way I can," Colvin said. "If it's coming off the bench and getting a hit there or starting periodically throughout the week, that's great. Whatever I can do to give some of these guys rest, I'll do what I can."
There isn't an opening in the Cubs' outfield because the team has long-term contract commitments to Alfonso Soriano, Kosuke Fukudome and Marlon Byrd. Outfielders Sam Fuld and Jim Adduci are still in camp. Adduci has no Major League experience and Fuld is considered more of a defensive sub and pinch-runner.
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Give strength and conditioning coach Tim Buss an assist. This offseason, Colvin and Buss trained together in Mesa. Colvin added 25 pounds, but he doesn't look heavy -- just more muscular. Because he feels stronger and is having success at the plate, Colvin is more confident.
"In the past, I could hit home runs but I would have to really muscle up," Colvin said. "Now, I don't have to do as much. Now I hit line drives and 'Oh, it got over his head.' If I was trying to hit a home run, I probably could. Now, I don't have to try."
Colvin did hear about Piniella's comments.
"I was talking to a few of my buddies on the team and they said, 'Hey, you still have a chance,'" he said. "I look at it, like I've said all along, there's some great outfielders and we'll see what happens."
Carrie Muskat is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.