Reed Johnson, who spent 2008 and 2009 with the Cubs before playing last season with the Dodgers, has returned to Chicago on a minor-league contract with an invite to spring training.
Johnson struggled for the Dodgers last season and has always been stretched as a regular, but he’s a good fit as a fourth outfielder or platoon player who draw starts versus left-handed pitching.
If he makes the Cubs’ roster out of spring training he figures to step into the lineup in place of Kosuke Fukudome and Tyler Colvin against southpaws, as Johnson hit .321/.377/.465 versus lefties during the past three seasons.
Rockies third baseman Nolan Arenado entered Monday night’s game against the Nationals sitting on 997 hits for his career spanning seven seasons. Arenado hit an RBI double in the first inning, grounded out in the third, doubled again to lead off the fifth, then hit a solo homer to lead off the seventh, breaking a 5-5 tie. The homer, off of Wander Suero, represented the 1,000th career hit for Arenado.
Arenado now has four homers on the season along with 14 RBI, 15 runs scored, and a .281/.337/.483 batting line. He has recovered nicely after a slow start to the season — he had a .610 OPS following an 0-for-4 game against the Giants on April 13.