Fo­cus set on out­field

Hey­ward, Cubs not new to chal­lenges of AT&T Park

Baltimore Sun - - ORIOLES & MLB PLAYOFFS - By Mark Gon­za­lez

Cubs right fielder Ja­son Hey­ward re­turned Sun­day to the site of one of the great­est catches of his ca­reer, and he loves AT&T Park and its spa­cious chal­lenges in right field.

“This out­field is a fun one be­cause there’s a lot of space in that di­rec­tion (right cen­ter), and as a out­fielder you want to run and be able to get the ball and feel you can catch ev­ery­thing,” said Hey­ward, who wasn’t in the start­ing lineup in Game 3 of the Na­tional League Di­vi­sion Se­ries on Mon­day in San Fran­cisco.

“This out­field gives you an op­por­tu­nity to do that, es­pe­cially go­ing back in that gap.”

The Cubs de­voted the last por­tion of Sun­day’s work­out to out­field play in right be­cause of its 24-foot brick wall and dif­fer­ent an­gles that presents chal­lenges. The out­field­ers were told to not charge drives so fast if they can’t get to the ball due to the fear the ball will carom past them.

In the case of 6-foot-5 Hey­ward, he ran nearly 35 yards be­fore catch­ing a deep drive near the 421foot sign in right cen­ter to rob De­nard Span of an ex­tra base hit May 20.

Hey­ward made the div­ing catch be­fore crash­ing into the wall and suf­fer­ing in­juries to his right torso and ab­domen that side­lined him for three games.

“I didn’t for­get,” Hey­ward smiled. “It was a fun catch.”

Ben Zo­brist started Mon­day night’s game in place of Hey­ward, who started the first two games. Zo­brist en­tered the game Cubs OF Ja­son Hey­ward suf­fers in­juries crash­ing into the right-field wall at AT&T Park on May 20 in San Fran­cisco. GIANTS VS. CUBS Cubs lead 2-0 Game 1: Cubs 1-0 Game 2: Cubs 5-2 Game 3: Late Game 4: 8:30 p.m. Tues­day* Cubs (Lackey 11-8) at Giants (Moore 13-12), FS1 Game 5: 8:30 p.m. Thur.* Giants (Cueto 18-5) at Cubs (Lester 19-5), FS1 x-if nec­es­sary 6-for-12 in his ca­reer against Giants ace Madi­son Bum­gar­ner. Hey­ward was 3-for-15.

Satur­day night’s Game 2 of the Na­tional League Di­vi­sion Se­ries be­tween the Giants and Cubs was the high­est rated and most watched pro­gram in MLB Net­work his­tory.

Ac­cord­ing to the MLB Net­work, the game peaked with a 2.9 rat­ing and 5.2 mil­lion view­ers from 9 to 9:15 p.m. CT.

The tele­cast sur­passed the pre­vi­ous record high in­volv­ing the Na­tion­als and Giants in Game 3 of the 2014 NLDS.

The game drew an 18.8 HH rat­ing in the Chicago area, while San Fran­cisco drew an 11.9 rat­ing, up 80 per­cent from Game 3 of the 2014 NLDS.

ERIC RIS­BERG/AP

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