Victorino eyes quick return from sore calf

Outfielder was scratched from Friday's lineup

Victorino eyes quick return from sore calf

MESA, Ariz. -- Shane Victorino, scratched from Friday's Cubs game because of a tight right calf, is expected to be back in the lineup on Monday, while Kyle Schwarber, bothered by soreness in his left knee, could return on Sunday if he passes all the tests.

The problem for Victorino was that he tried to run without putting his orthotics in his shoes.

"What happened was I'd been working out and training with orthotics, and [Friday] I decided to run without them," Victorino said Saturday. "I'm not saying that's the reason, but that's probably the reason. There's probably other things, too, with the body, to get the kinks out.

"I felt it coming, and felt it on the treadmill, and I got off and went to stretch, and I said, I don't want to make this way worse. If we catch it now, make it a one-, two-day thing."

Victorino predicted he would be back in the lineup as the designated hitter for the Cubs in Monday's game against the Padres. And he will have the pads in his shoes.

"I learned a lesson -- don't train, train, train and all of a sudden take them out and try to run for 10 minutes," Victorino said. "It feels a lot better today, so that's a big step for me."

Schwarber came out of Thursday's game after two innings when he felt some discomfort in his left knee after making a throw home from left field. He was able to run Saturday, and was on track to start on Sunday.

Tommy La Stella, sidelined with a strained left calf, was making progress but there is no timetable for his return. Albert Almora, who had to leave practice because of back spasms, was in the lineup for the Cubs' night game against the Dodgers on Saturday.

Worth noting:

• Cubs manager Joe Maddon knows about rivalries, and last year, he got his first exposure to Cubs vs. White Sox.

"When you talk to the fans in the city, people approach me, and I love when I get approached by the White Sox fans," Maddon said. "They're very respectful and nice going and all that stuff."

Maddon enjoys the conversations.

"I think [rivalries] are wonderful for any sport," he said. "[Cubs vs. White Sox] is legit and not contrived, and I appreciate it."

The Cubs have the edge in bragging rights in Chicago after Saturday's 9-2 win over the White Sox. The two teams will meet again on March 18 in Glendale, Ariz.

Fowler's solo homer

• Munenori Kawasaki made his first spring start at second base on Saturday. A non-roster invitee, Kawasaki is hoping to find a place on the Cubs' roster as a utility player.

"Technically, he's really good at what he does -- the way he receives a ground ball, moves his feet, his throwing," Maddon said. "He's been taught well. The thing I don't think he gets enough credit for is how good of an at-bat he works. Versus a lefty or righty, he makes adjustments. Here's a guy who likes to have fun but knows when it's time to get down to business."

Would Maddon consider using Kawasaki at third base?

"I'll use him anywhere and I think he can do it," Maddon said. "I'd play him in the outfield. This guy is a baseball player. He has a great feel for the game. Because he can be humorous, people don't give him enough credit for being a good baseball player."

Dallas Beeler has yet to appear in a game for the Cubs this spring as a precautionary move. The right-hander was bothered by a tight lat last year, but did make 21 starts at Triple-A Iowa.

"I just want to make sure I'm good to go for the season," Beeler said Saturday. "I'm not trying to rush anything."

Carrie Muskat is a reporter for MLB.com. 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.