Cubs sneak in a day off for Soriano

MILWAUKEE -- Alfonso Soriano has been as durable as ever and Chicago Cubs manager Dale Sveum wants it to stay that way.

Sveum gave his veteran left fielder a rare day off leading into Thursday’s off day. When the Cubs begin a homestand Friday against the Colorado Rockies they will play 20 consecutive days without a break, including a three-city trip to Washington D.C., Pittsburgh and Houston.

“You have to pick some times to give him days off,” Sveum said. “(Brewers starter Yovani) Gallardo is on the mound and his numbers aren’t too good against him, so it’s a good say to give him a little breather and get the left-handers in the lineup.”

Soriano’s ability to produce this season on a struggling team has been a sight to see. All of his 22 home runs have come since May 15, and he also has 76 RBIs with six weeks still left to play. He heated up after working his way through an early sore knee, but has managed to maintain his health issues.

“You try to keep him healthy, and I haven’t been able to give him as many days off as I want to because of the productivity that he has given us,” Sveum said. “In the middle of the lineup we just don’t have the guy to replace him every time.”

On Wednesday, David DeJesus slid over to left field and hit a home run in his first at-bat. Bryan LaHair filled out the outfield by getting the start in right.