Reining in Schwarber a challenge for Cubs

Club debating on seven- or eight-man bullpen; Maddon goes one on one with Russell

Reining in Schwarber a challenge for Cubs

MESA, Ariz. -- The Cubs have a problem with Kyle Schwarber, and it has nothing to do with broken car windshields.

"The problem is that this guy wants to work all the time," manager Joe Maddon said Wednesday. "That's the only problem we have -- and is that a problem when you have a guy who wants to work too much?"

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Schwarber has been working with the catchers since they reported last week. Now that the full squad is in camp, he also will be doing outfield drills. The goal is to keep his bat in the lineup, and the Cubs feel he's not ready to be a full-time catcher. After Wednesday's workout, Schwarber was with bench coach Dave Martinez and outfield instructor Doug Dascenzo on Field 1, doing extra work.

Maddon talked to the coaching staff about pacing Schwarber, who apparently has endless energy.

"Everybody's on the same page," Maddon said. "Now we have to get him to cooperate."

Ricketts: Good vibrations at Cubs' camp

• The Cubs are debating whether to have a seven- or eight-man bullpen.

"A lot of that would depend on how you feel about the guys on your bench and who you want to keep there and how it will play out," Maddon said. "It always depends on the length you think you'll get out of your starters. The difference with our group is you look at that, and at the versatility of our bullpen."

The Cubs have several versatile relievers who recently have been starters, including Travis Wood, Clayton Richard, Trevor Cahill and Adam Warren.

• When Maddon had his one-on-one sessions with Addison Russell, the topic of playing second base did not come up. Russell is projected as the full-time shortstop, but he said Tuesday that he'd like to get some reps at second, as well. Maddon said they spoke exclusively about shortstop and Russell's relationship with second baseman Ben Zobrist. The manager also complimented Russell on last year and noted the areas to improve on this year.

• Hall of Famer Ryne Sandberg was in Cubs camp Wednesday. He will be an instructor. ... Thursday will be the first day of live batting practice.

Ryne Sandberg signs autographs upon his arrival at Cubs camp.Carrie Muskat/

Quote of the day: "I really like the Spring Training dance. I think it should be a slow dance." -- Maddon, on how he doesn't want players to try to win a job on the first day, but to pace themselves

Carrie Muskat is a reporter for She writes a blog, Muskat Ramblings. You can follow her on Twitter @CarrieMuskat and listen to her podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.