Soriano, Navarro in lineup vs. Mariners

SEATTLE -- Alfonso Soriano was back in the Chicago Cubs lineup at DH while Dioner Navarro got his second straight start behind the plate as the Cubs opened up a three-game set in Seattle on Friday.

Soriano, who had the day off during Thursday’s 7-2 win at Milwaukee, will look to put a stop his cold streak as he’s hitting just .148 in his last 15 games.

Meanwhile, Navarro got the nod at catcher again. Manager Dale Sveum said nothing is wrong with Welington Castillo, who normally starts at catcher. Sveum just wants to get Navarro out there as the Cubs continue their nine-game road swing.

“With these American League games coming, I might use him at DH one day, so I want to keep his bat fresh,” the skipper said of Navarro.

Sveum had good things to say about the Venezuelan, who belted a three-run homer on Thursday and is hitting .258 with seven home runs.

“[His production] has been a nice asset to have from your backup catcher,” Syeum said. “He’s had some big hits, too.”

  • The Cubs activated catcher Steve Clevenger from the disabled list and optioned him to Triple-A Iowa. Zach Putnam, who is recovering from a bone spur, was transferred to the 60-day DL to make room for Clevenger.

  • Scott Baker threw his first simulated game this week and Sveum said it went well. He could join the team by the end of August.