VIDEO: Anthony Rizzo destroys first pitch he sees

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Cubs first baseman Anthony Rizzo didn't hit a home run all spring. So when I constantly stress that spring stats don't mean much, remember this -- which happened on the first pitch Rizzo saw in the 2013 regular season:

That very nearly left PNC Park to center field, hitting the fence behind the back row. Early estimates pegged the blast at 438 feet. Shortstop Starlin Castro singled before Rizzo, so it was a two-run blast, and it was all Cubs starting pitcher Jeff Samardzija needed.

The Cubs won, 3-1, behind Rizzo, Castro (2-for-4, R, SB), catcher Welington Castillo (2-for-4, 2 2B, RBI) and a dominant Samardzija (8 IP, 2 H, 0 ER, 9 K, 1 BB).

Obviously the 2013 Cubs are built with their eyes on the future, but performances from that foursome are reminders that the future nucleus is already starting to take shape.

CBS Sports Writer

Matt Snyder has been a baseball writer with CBS Sports since 2011. A member of the BBWAA, he's now covered the last five World Series beginning with the epic 2011 Fall Classic. The former Indiana University... Full Bio

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