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Dempster heads to bullpen for Game 3
By Bruce Miles | Daily Herald Staff

The Cubs' Jim Edmonds is unable to make a diving catch in the eighth inning Thursday in a 10-3 loss to the Dodgers.


Steve Lundy | Staff Photographer

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Published: 10/4/2008 12:04 AM

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LOS ANGELES - The Cubs' bullpen will have a new old face tonight and perhaps Sunday.

Game 1 starting pitcher Ryan Dempster will head to the pen for tonight's third game of the National League division series, which the Cubs trail 0-2 to the Los Angeles Dodgers.

Dempster returned to starting this year after serving three years as the team's closer.

"We'll have him in the bullpen available tomorrow and Sunday," said manager Lou Piniella. "And if he pitches, we can always start (Carlos) Zambrano on Tuesday, which would be his fifth day.

"We're going to pull out all the stops that we can and do what ever we can to help ourselves win baseball games.

In and out: As promised, Lou Piniella will have Mike Fontenot in the lineup at second base, moving Mark DeRosa to right field, replacing the struggling Kosuke Fukudome.

The lineup looks like this: Alfonso Soriano, Fontenot, Derrek Lee, Aramis Ramirez, Geovany Soto, Jim Edmonds, DeRosa, Ryan Theriot and right-hander Rich Harden.

Piniella benched Fukudome much of September and doesn't want to engage in any more discussions about the first-year right fielder, who has struggled for more than a half-season.

"Let's not worry about Fukudome right now," Piniella said. "Let's worry about the team, and let's worry about what's best for the team. I think too much is being made of the point whether this guy's playing or that guy isn't playing. This is a team. And I'm going to play Fontenot (tonight). He's been swinging the bat well."

Harden OK: Rich Harden says his right shoulder is fine, despite a report that he took a cortisone shot in it in September. Such shots are commonplace among pitchers.

"Just regular maintenance," said Harden, who tires of talking about his health situation. "I guess some people think it's an issue. There's nothing going on. Regular maintenance, getting ready for the postseason."

Lots of volunteers: Almost all Cubs players attended Friday's workout. Jim Edmonds and Derrek Lee, who live in California, went home, with the OK of Lou Piniella. Kosuke Fukudome did not work out, and Cubs brass said he probably needed a mental day off anyway. A few pitchers were not in attendance.

Role reversal: Dodgers manager Joe Torre says he understands the pressure the Cubs were under at Wrigley Field and how it might benefit them to be out of Chicago.

"I think that's a good point because I'm a believer that in postseason, when you play at home, there's a lot of pressure on you to play well and win," Torre said.

"You're supposed to win. I think we have that on us right now, especially, winning the last two games."