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Ankle schmankle: Kris Bryant not sore enough to miss Cubs series opener in Colorado

‘There’s not that many players that don’t want to hit on the moon,’ Cubs manager Joe Maddon said.

St Louis Cardinals v Chicago Cubs
Kris Bryant
Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

DENVER — Despite at least one report suggesting Kris Bryant might sit out the series opener Monday night against the Rockies because of a sore ankle, Bryant was back in the lineup after being evaluated early in the day.

“There’s not that many players that don’t want to hit on the moon,” manager Joe Maddon said of high-altitude Coors Field. “So they’re going to feel good regardless.”

Bryant turned his ankle Sunday night against the Cardinals when he stutter-stepped rounding first on a single with a man on base, trying to read the throw from the outfield and the lead runner. He continued to second on the play.

After a visit by the trainer, Bryant stayed in the game. He singled again in his next at-bat.

“It was a little bit sore,” Maddon said. “But right now he’s feeling pretty good. We’ll just watch it.”

No hard feelings

Longtime Rockies star Carlos Gonzalez returned to Coors Field for the first time since leaving as a free agent after last season. He got a standing ovation before his first at-bat leading off the second and stepped out of the batter’s box and doffed his helmet to the crowd.

“This is home, man,” he said before the game. “A lot of memories here.”

This and that

Homecoming Part II: Colorado native David Bote led off the third with a homer in his first game back since his big-league debut series at Coors Field last season.

• When Kyle Schwarber followed Bote’s shot with another homer, it marked the first time the Cubs hit back-to-back homers since less than two weeks ago when — guess who? — Bote and Schwarber did it in Houston.