MILWAUKEE – Bryan LaHair couldn’t quite remember when he hit his last home run.
“Well, it’s been a while, I know that,” he said. “I’m just battling right now and working hard behind the scenes and trying to get things figured out. I’ve been having good at-bats and I’m starting to hit the ball hard again.”
LaHair finally hit a home run Wednesday at Milwaukee, 49 days after his last one, which came July 4 at Atlanta. In the interim he has been reduced to barely any playing time after first getting moved to right field when Anthony Rizzo came up and then to the bench when Brett Jackson arrived.
LaHair has started just five times since Aug. 4 and in one of those starts he had just two official trips to the plate before he was replaced in the outfield by Joe Mather. What could be of benefit is the fact that he has started three times over the past five games and has driven in three runs in those games.
“Any time you can get a result after hard work it does show that hard work will pay off,” he said. “I’ll take it.”
LaHair has remained devoted to the team and has taken his reduced playing time in stride but that doesn’t mean it has been an easy month to take.
“It’s definitely tough,” he said. “It’s not something that I’m used to and it’s definitely not something I like. I have a role now and I’m just trying to do the best job I can possibly do and learn that role. It’s a role I haven’t learned before so I’m trying to learn that role.”
LaHair no longer looks to be a good fit with the Cubs and it remains uncertain where he might end up next season. Being accepting of his current role is his only option now.
“I’m trying to show people every day what I can do,” he said. “I go out every day and I work hard to get back on track. I’m just trying to do the best job I can.”