It may not be a regular season game, but Monday’s game between the Los Angeles Angels and Chicago Cubs will still be a noteworthy one for manager Joe Maddon as he faces his former team for the first time.
Maddon, who helped guide the Cubs to their first World Series title in 108 years by capturing the 2016 Fall Classic, will bring his Angels squad to Sloan Park in Mesa for the first of two contests between the clubs this spring.
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Maddon left the Cubs after the 2019 season and quickly signed with the Angels, a team he worked with for nearly three decades before finally getting a full-time managerial job with the Tampa Bay Rays.
In Monday’s game, billed as an “All-Access Game” on ESPN, Maddon will have another former Cub on the field, as Tommy La Stella will bat leadoff and play second base for the Halos. La Stella spent four seasons with the Cubs before being traded to the Angels prior to last season, and the move turned out to be a great one for him as he racked up 16 home runs and 44 RBI’s before an injury ended his season.
Albert Pujols will also appear in the game, batting third and playing first base for the Angels.
On the Cubs’ side of the diamond, they will load up their lineup with talent at the top, as Kris Bryant and Anthony Rizzo will bat in the first and second spots in the order. Javier Báez will bat third and play shortstop, while Kyle Schwarber will bat in the cleanup spot and play left field.
Kyle Hendricks will get the start for the Cubs, his second of the spring season.
Jeremy Jeffress, Dan Winkler, Jharel Cotton and Tyson Miller are also set to pitch for the Cubs in the game.
The spring training game is one of only two the teams will play against one another in Cactus League play. The teams will not play during the regular season.
First pitch is scheduled for 2:05 p.m., and the game will air on ESPN.