With an eight-game losing streak straining tempers, something had to give. And it turned out to be outfielders Corey Patterson and Jason Dubois, both of whom were optioned to Class AAA Iowa after the Cubs dropped a doubleheader to the Braves 6-0, 9-4 Thursday.
General manager Jim Hendry said that Patterson understood the demotion. But there has to be a question raised about that because Patterson refused to talk to the media. Can a trade demand out of the Patterson camp be far behind?
”We still think the Corey that we are going to get is still in there,” Hendry said. ”Right now, he’s not that Corey. He is probably trying too hard. You can see in his face he’s trying too hard, and it’s hard to fix it in the middle of a game in the big leagues.
“When you do that in this game, sometimes it goes the other way on you. We have a good, honest relationship with him and have known him a long time. For his own good and our good long-term it seems like the right thing to do. It’ll be good for him.”
Hendry reached down to Class AA West Tenn for replacements. Highly touted left fielder Matt Murton (above) was hitting .342 there, while Adam Greenberg is the other call-up and seems a stopgap measure until injured West Tenn center fielder Felix Pie [another big prospect like Murton] can recover in about two weeks from a sprained right ankle.