Ramirez returns as Soriano, Lee rest

Ramirez returns as Soriano, Lee rest

PHOENIX -- Cubs skipper Lou Piniella's Monday lineup featured the return of one slugger but the absence of two others.

Third baseman Aramis Ramirez, who did not play Saturday or Sunday after aggravating his sprained left thumb -- the same injury that landed him on the 15-day disabled list June 9 -- was back in the starting lineup, slotted sixth in the batting order. He entered Monday hitting .177 with just six home runs and 23 RBIs in 55 games this season.

Piniella did elect to rest left fielder Alfonso Soriano and first baseman Derrek Lee, giving him two potent options off of the bench.

Lee and Soriano went a combined 7-for-48 (.146) at the plate during the Cubs' recent seven-game homestand. On Monday, Xavier Nady and Tyler Colvin filled in for them at first base and in left field, respectively.

-- Andrew Pentis