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Cubs may have minor cure for Tyler Colvin’s major issues

A trip minors would mean more consistent playing time for Tyler Colvwho’s hitting just .113 struggling with big-league Cubs his

A trip to the minors would mean more consistent playing time for Tyler Colvin, who’s hitting just .113 and struggling with the big-league Cubs in his sophomore season. | Doug Pensinger~Getty Images

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Updated: August 27, 2011 12:33AM

The dilemma of finding playing time for struggling Tyler Colvin may come to a head soon, with it becoming increasingly possible the Cubs will send him to the minors.

Colvin is hitting only .113 (two homers, eight RBI) this season and is in an 0-for-12 slump in his last nine games. But his situation is made worse because the other four outfielders are playing well, with even reserve infielder Blake DeWitt coming off the bench to get time in the outfield last Thursday.

Manager Mike Quade conceded Saturday that a move to the minors to get Colvin consistent playing time could be coming.

‘‘We need to get him involved, and that’s been on my mind the last few days,’’ Quade said. ‘‘It’s been awful for Colvin — there’s no way around it. Other people are as responsible as Tyler [for playing well]. I have a guy who is hitting as hot as anyone [Reed Johnson] on the bench. It’s a heck of a job trying to find balance for [Colvin]. It’s the worst part of my day, to be honest, and I’ve said that before. He had a good at-bat [a line-drive out while pinch-hitting Friday], but it’s difficult with the four other guys we have.’’

Soto on schedule

Catcher Geovany Soto will leave for the Cubs’ Mesa, Ariz., training facility during the upcoming road trip to continue his recovery from the groin strain he suffered Wednesday.

‘‘It’s much better,’’ he said Saturday. ‘‘I’m working out and throwing a little to see how it feels.’’

Head of the class

The tandem of Starlin Castro and Darwin Barney continues to be among baseball’s best. Castro has rebounded in the last five games after a 2-for-25 stretch in his previous six. He entered Saturday’s game against the San Francisco Giants leading the majors with nine games with at least three hits after his 3-for-5 day Friday. He moved from the leadoff spot to third Saturday as Kosuke Fukudome, who’s hitting .344, started in right field and led off against the Giants’ Ryan Vogelsong. Castro went 2-for-3.

Barney has stayed consistent, leading rookies in three offensive categories, including most hits (45), most multihit games (16) and highest rookie average (.333).


Justin Berg was optioned to Class AAA Iowa to make room for starter Doug Davis. Berg appeared in six games since being recalled April 23. The Cubs also outrighted right-hander Thomas Diamond to Iowa, leaving a spot open on the 40-man roster.

◆ The Cubs’ game against the New York Yankees on June 19 at Wrigley Field will start at 7:10 p.m. as ESPN’s Sunday night game.

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