Rizzo said he enjoys playing in Chicago and would like to stay with the Cubs beyond 2020, Gordon Wittenmyer of NBC Sports Chicago reports. The team picked up Rizzo's $16.5 million 2020 club option back in November, and it can do so one more time next year if it wants. The slugging first baseman said he wants to stay in Chicago long term, but he also called the business side of baseball "as cutthroat as ever" in January when the Cubs shut down contract extension talks. Rizzo has been a cornerstone player for the Cubs since 2012, but if the team gets off to a sluggish start when the 2020 season is able to resume, management could begin to move some bigger pieces as part of a rebuild.
Rizzo is batting just .176 with no home runs through his first 17 Cactus League at-bats. Rizzo is no stranger to slow starts, as the career .273 hitter has just a .241 mark in March and April. Fantasy owners will need to be patient with the slugger, but when everything is said and done, he will likely post a strong average and approach 30 home runs and 100 RBI once again assuming he stays healthy.
Rizzo (finger) is starting at first base and hitting second Saturday against the Reds. He was scratched from Thursday's lineup due to a blister, but it was clearly a minor issue.
Rizzo was scratched from Thursday's spring game against the Rangers due to a blister, Sahadev Sharma of The Athletic reports. Corban Joseph will enter the lineup at first base in place of Rizzo, who should be considered day-to-day after a blister opened up on his right middle finger. With three weeks to go until Opening Day, it doesn't seem like this issue will affect Rizzo's availability for the start of the season.
Rizzo confirmed Thursday that he'll serve as the Cubs' No. 2 hitter this season, Bruce Levine of 670TheScore.com reports. First-year manager David Ross will keep the tandem of Kris Bryant and Rizzo in back-to-back lineup spots, though both players will move up one slot in the order after the pair most commonly batted second and third, respectively, in 2019. Assuming the Cubs stay committed to Rizzo as the No. 2 hitter, the first baseman could make a legitimate push for 700 plate appearances for the second time in his career if he's able to avoid any absences due to injury. Rizzo has some limited prior experience as a No. 2 hitter, slashing .300/.401/.515 with 11 home runs and 27 RBI in 237 career plate appearances out of that lineup spot.