Cubs notes: Torrid Ben Zobrist thrives on consistency

SHARE Cubs notes: Torrid Ben Zobrist thrives on consistency
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The Cubs’ Ben Zobrist hits a run-scoring double in the first inning against the Phillies on Saturday at Wrigley Field. | Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

Ben Zobrist has been the steadiest hand at the plate for the Cubs of late, and the 35-year-old veteran added two more hits and an RBI Saturday.

Zobrist has three consecutive multihit games and five in his last seven contests. He’s riding a 14-game hitting streak, the longest of the season by Cub.

“He is very consistent,” manager Joe Maddon said. “He’s always been that. Even when he’s not getting hits he contributes. I’ll say one more time: It’s how he takes care of himself. His workout routine postgame is phenomenal. What he does before the game to get ready. What he eats. Everything he does has a purpose.”

Zobrist, who is hitting .474 since May 5, drove in the second run of the game with a two-out double in the first inning, his 19th two-out RBI. He has 15 RBI with two outs in May alone.

Zobrist also extended his streak of reaching base safely to 33 games, the longest single-season streak by Cub since Starlin Castro did it for 40 games in 2011.

The utility infielder isn’t the only one streaking. Jason Heyward has hit safely in eight consecutive home games after doubling twice. Kris Bryant singled in the sixth and has hit safely in four in row.

Cubs and Bears

Bears wide receiver Alshon Jeffery was a no-show to organized team activities this week, but he was right on time to throw out the first pitch before the Cubs-Phillies game at Wrigley Field.

Wearing a Cubs hat and jersey, Jeffery was the guest conductor for “Take Me Out to the Ball Game” during the seventh-inning stretch.

Jeffery is in the middle of contract negotiations with the Bears and is signed to a one-year, $14.6 million contract. The sides hope to hammer out a long-term deal before the July 15 deadline.

Phils running on youth

With nearly a third of the -season in the books, the Phillies have been a pleasant surprise in the National League East.

At 26-23 after a loss to the Cubs, the Phillies were just a few games behind the Mets and appear ahead of schedule in their rebuilding process.

Maddon, whose Cubs are through the rebuilding phase and fully poised to compete for championships, has been impressed by what he’s seen from the Phillies.

“I like their athleticism a lot,” Maddon said before complimenting the team’s young core that includes Odubel Herrera, Freddy Galvis and Maikel Franco. “As their pitching gets better, they’ll be really interesting.”

The Phillies have the second-youngest roster in the majors behind Arizona. The Cubs and Phillies wrap up the series Sunday.

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