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Soler to begin rehab stint in coming week

ST. LOUIS -- Cubs right fielder Jorge Soler, on the disabled list since June 3 with a sprained left ankle, will begin a rehab assignment next week, manager Joe Maddon said. The time off may benefit the outfielder, too.

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"We're eager to get him back, but I also think this break can get him back to where he had been and get his strike zone more under control," Maddon said on Saturday. "As young as he is and not having played a full season, this might work to his benefit."

Soler was batting .265 with four home runs in 49 games before he was injured. At that point, he was leading the National League in strikeouts with 67.

Cubs general manager Jed Hoyer said the club was looking at its Minor League schedules and the weather to determine where to send Soler.

Extra bases

• Reliever Rafael Soriano, whom the Cubs signed to a Minor League contract earlier this month, continues to work out at the team's academy in the Dominican Republic. Maddon has tried to contact the right-hander, who pitched for the manager with the Tampa Bay Rays, and part of the delay in getting Soriano to the U.S. is paperwork that's required for a visa. Maddon planned on talking to the pitcher but had yet to make contact.

"I'm certain that once he gets here, and he starts feeling good, my phone will start lighting up," Maddon said.

• Cubs reliever Jason Motte and Cardinals outfielder Jon Jay will co-host a cornhole tournament on Sunday to raise money for their respective foundations. Last year, Motte raised $100,000 at the event and said he has 600 people participating on Sunday.

"We're trying to beat each other on the field," Motte said of his former teammate Jay, "but we're working together to fight [cancer]."

• The Cubs optioned right-hander Yoervis Medina to Triple-A Iowa to make room on the roster for Donn Roach, who allowed four runs on eight hits and was chased in the fourth inning of his Cubs debut on Saturday. To make room for Roach on the 40-man roster, catcher Rafael Lopez was designated for assignment. Medina was acquired from the Mariners on May 19.

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Anthony Rizzo entered Saturday having been hit by a pitch 15 times, the most in the Major Leagues. And he continues not to wear any protective padding.

"That's a tribute to his New Jersey roots," Maddon said.

Carrie Muskat is a reporter for She writes a blog, Muskat Ramblings. You can follow her on Twitter @CarrieMuskat and listen to her podcast.
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