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Notes: Baker sets playoff roster
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09/30/2003  7:24 PM ET 
Notes: Baker sets playoff roster
Cruz, Glanville on; Estes, Womack left off for NLDS
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Doug Glanville (left) gives the Cubs a right-handed bat off the bench and speed. (Jill Weisleder/Dodgers)
ATLANTA -- Pitcher Juan Cruz and outfielder Doug Glanville are on, pitcher Shawn Estes and infielder Tony Womack off the Chicago Cubs' postseason roster for the NL Division series.

Cubs manager Dusty Baker announced his final 25-man roster Tuesday before Game 1 of the best-of-five series against the Atlanta Braves.

Estes has a tender left shoulder, so there was a question as to his durability. Womack also has been bothered by a sore right elbow, so he also was limited. Baker said Glanville gives the Cubs another right-handed bat on the bench and some speed.

"We just erred on the side of caution," Estes said Tuesday. "Hopefully we'll get through the first round and I'll be available for the NLCS. It started bothering me in Pittsburgh after my relief appearance and it was tender before I pitched in Cincinnati but nothing was going to keep me out of that game."

Estes went the distance against the Reds, throwing a four-hit shutout in only his second start of the month.

"I thought I could be ready for Monday's game if necessary (to have a tiebreaker)," Estes said. "I may have been ready ... but we didn't have to do that and (my shoulder) still isn't where it needs to be."

Estes said he isn't hurt, just bothered by inflammation and fatigue in his shoulder.

"I have no question in my mind that I'll be ready next round," Estes said. "(Baker) had to make a decision."

The roster moves means the Cubs will carry 11 pitchers. Besides starters Kerry Wood, Carlos Zambrano, Mark Prior and Matt Clement, they will have Antonio Alfonseca, Joe Borowski, Cruz, Kyle Farnsworth, Mark Guthrie, Mike Remlinger and Dave Veres in the pen.

All Sammy all the time: Sammy Sosa batted .182 (2-for-11) in the 1998 NLDS against the Braves. Baker will watch his slugger's at-bats in hopes that he isn't pressing.

"You can't hit for him," Baker said. "You hope he stays in the strike zone. when a guy's struggling, they're usually swinging at balls that aren't high percentage pitches to hit.

"In '98 he struggled, but he was a lot younger then, he was a lot more vulnerable then," Baker said. "Plus in '98, you've got a young (Greg) Maddux, a young (John) Smoltz and a young (Tom) Glavine (pitching for the Braves)."

Decisions, decisions: Baker says he has no regrets about leaving San Francisco and accepting the job with the Cubs.

"You're not sure about your decision until later," Baker said. "This has been -- other than marrying my wife and starting my career with the Giants -- this is right at the top as far as making a decision. I prayed on it.

"I'm the most blessed man in America," he said. "How often do you make a decision and it turns out not only great but better than where you were? To me, this is perhaps one of the better situations or decisions I've made in my life."

Extra bases: Cubs center fielder Corey Patterson will be in uniform and with the team in the dugout as will some other players not on the roster but with the team. That list includes Hee Seop Choi, Todd Wellemeyer, Josh Paul and Augie Ojeda. Patterson suffered a season ending knee injury July 6, and has been rehabbing in the Atlanta area. ... Former Cub catcher Joe Girardi is doing color commentary for ESPN Radio. ... Baker is a little superstitous about his wristbands. For the record, he was wearing gray with a red stripe for Game 1.

Experience: Cubs catcher Damian Miller is wearing the diamond-encrusted ring he won as a member of the 2001 World Series champion Arizona Diamondbacks. It's a nice motivator.

In 2001, Miller caught veterans Randy Johnson and Curt Schilling, two veterans pitchers. This year with the Cubs, Miller has worked with young, up and coming pitchers like 22-year-old Carlos Zambrano, who will start Game 2 of the NLDS, and 23-year-old Mark Prior, who will start Game 3. Kerry Wood, who started Game 1, is only 26.

"I think this has been a little more fulfilling for me," Miller said. "I'd like to think I've helped them come along. Randy and Curt were already at their star status and understood the game. These guys don't understand how good they are yet.

"For me to come over and think that I helped -- I hope they think I did," Miller said. "It's been a fun year catching these guys."

Numbers game: Mike Hampton started this season with a 7-4 career record against the Cubs. Sosa has some interesting numbers against the lefty. Sosa has batted .250 (13-for-52) against Hampton in his career, and six of those hits have been home runs. He's also struck out 10 times.

Here's how the other Cubs have fared against Hampton: Moises Alou is 8-for-21, Alex Gonzalez 1-for-7, Mark Grudzielanek 15-for-37, Eric Karros 5-for-30, Kenny Lofton 6-for-17, Aramis Ramirez 3-for-10.

The Braves haven't seen Chicago's Game 2 starter, Carlos Zambrano, very much. Vinny Castilla is 3-for-8, Rafael Furcal 0-for-9, Andruw Jones 0-for-5, Chipper Jones 1-for-6, Javy Lopez 2-for-8, and Gary Sheffield 2-for-6.

Good timing: Congratulations to Chuck Wasserstrom, manager of media information for the Cubs, and his wife Michelle who celebrated the birth of twin daughters, Danielle and Nicole, early Tuesday in Chicago. All were doing well.

Weather forecast: It'll be beautiful in Atlanta with clear skies and evening temperatures in the 50s. However, the forecast for Chicago for Game 3 Friday isn't good with showers expected and lows in the 40s.

Thanks, Brewers: The folks at Lou Malnati's Pizza in Chicago are Cubs fans. They delivered 25 deep dish pizzas, three huge salads and 10 Eli's Cheesecakes to the Milwaukee Brewers' front office Tuesday to say thanks to the team for beating the Houston Astros in the final weekend of the regular season. The Brewers' wins gave the Cubs an opening, and Chicago clinched the NL Central Division with a doubleheader sweep Saturday over Pittsburgh.

Brewers president Ulice Payne said he was proud of the way the team battled even though it was the 161st game and meant nothing to Milwaukee but everything to the Astros.

"To the people of Chicago," Payne said into a television camera, scarfing down a big chunk of cheesecake, "Mmm, mmm, good."

"It was a highlight to us because we finally got a little bit of exposure, where our game would be No. 1 on 'Baseball Tonight' instead of waiting for 28 minutes ... to see the highlights," Brewers manager Ned Yost said of the final series.

"The Cubs did their part, too. They had to win it," Yost said. "But Houston had to win it, too, and they didn't. So it was a satisfying, fun time, and it was good to show everybody, 'Look, this is what we've been talking about all year long and our record might not be the greatest, but this is what we've got.' "

Game 1 notes: Kerry Wood became the 11th player in NL Division Series with a double-digit strikeout game. Wood fanned 11 in Game 1 Tuesday. ... Kenny Lofton went 2-for-5 Tuesday and is batting .280 (7-for-25) over his last six Division Series games, all of which have come against the Braves. ... Eric Karros is batting .320 (8-for-25) in the postseason in his career after his 2-for-4 night. ... Sammy Sosa's stolen base in the seventh inning was his first in 2003 and his third since the start of the 2001 season. Carrie Muskat is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to approval by Major League Baseball or its clubs.



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