Cubs lose, Veras struggles again

MESA, Ariz – The Chicago Cubs lost 7-1 to the San Diego Padres on Monday night in the first night game at new Cubs Park.

The Good: Emilio Bonifacio led off the Cubs' half of the first with his fourth triple of the spring, tying him for second in baseball. Bonifacio has been as good as advertised, particularly with his legs. He flew home on a ground ball to third when the third baseman at first looked him back, then threw across the diamond. It's going to be hard to keep Bonifacio out of the lineup, especially when slugging could be at a premium during a cold first month of the season.

Anthony Rizzo added another hit off a left-handed pitcher, something he's excelled at this spring.

The Bad: Closer Jose Veras continued a rough spring, giving up two runs on three hits, a walk and a hit batter. His ERA is 7.88. The Cubs might want to keep an eye on the right-hander, who's had no easy innings this spring.

The OK: Carlos Villanueva threw four innings of three-run ball and might be behind Chris Rusin for the fifth starter's job. If spring is any indication, Rusin has won that role.

What's next: The Cubs play a split doubleheader Tuesday. The featured game is at night against these same Padres, with top pitching prospect C.J. Edwards scheduled to make his debut with the big league team. Javier Baez is slated to play shortstop behind him. The Cubs take on the Angels in the day game.