Byrd grounded during season's early going

Byrd grounded during season's early going

MIAMI -- This has not been a good road trip for Marlon Byrd, who entered Wednesday's game hitless in his last three games and 1-for-13 in his last four games.

The Cubs center fielder began the year 1-for-21 in six home games, so he can't blame room service. Cubs manager Dale Sveum said Byrd looked more aggressive in early batting practice on Wednesday and not so defensive.

"We've got to get him going," Sveum said. "We've got to get him swinging the bat. That's a big part of our lineup. He's playing a real nice center field. He's doing a great job out there. He's playing hard and battling and working his butt off to get out of it."

It's only been 10 games and 34 at-bats, and Sveum said he wants to see what happens at the 100 at-bat mark. Byrd is batting eighth; last year, he hit fifth or sixth. Sveum said that shouldn't matter.

"These days, people get pitched the same and it doesn't matter what's going on," Sveum said. "You'll be pitched on how they're supposed to get you out. It doesn't matter where you hit in the lineup."