Thanks to cubs.com-
PHILADELPHIA -- Give Derrek Lee points for the power of persuasion. A little kink in the left side of his neck, caused by sliding into second base on Saturday, and a National League-leading .393 average (55-for-141, with two homers and 21 RBIs) weren't about to keep him out of the lineup.
Lee wasn't supposed to start for the Mother's Day Sunday afternoon game against the Phillies, replaced by Daryle Ward on Cubs manager Lou Piniella's lineup card.
Lee did start, taking one at-bat, grounding into an inning-ending double play in the first, but he did not come out for second inning because of neck spasms and is listed as day-to-day.
Lee actually poked his head into Piniella's office before the game to plead his case once he saw the original lineup card posted without his name for the first time this season.
"Mr. Lee wants to play, but he has a kink in his neck from sliding into second base [on Saturday], and the trainer suggested it might be a good idea he take a day off," Piniella said. "I appreciate the fact that Derrek wants to play. We'd like to get Daryle some opportunities to play; it's just that our first baseman is an every, everyday guy."
Lee felt he was OK to play. But he also understood Piniella's original intention.
"I just have a kink in my neck," Lee explained, pointing to the left side of his neck. "I slid into second [Saturday] and got this weird feeling like it went through my whole body. It's a little tough to turn my head. But I don't think I need any days off. I need to play. It's not like I hurt myself [that seriously]. I understand [what Piniella] is doing. He's trying to protect me."
Once Lee took batting practice, Piniella opted to change his mind 70 minutes before game time, replacing Ward with Lee, who is hitting .436 with runners in scoring position (17-for-39, with one homer and 18 RBIs).
Ward had the impression he would start and spoke to Lee about it before Sunday's game.
"I do want an opportunity to play," said Ward, who entered the game hitting .333 (5-for-15). "I'm not perfect. I do have some complaints here and there about getting more playing time. I'm just looking for an opportunity to play. It's why I practice as hard as I can. You never know what's going to happen."
Dont be suprised to see the batting leader in the lineup for tommarrow nights game on ESPN against Glavine and the Mets. If he is not in the lineup I will be suprised becuase lee is such a competor. Lets hope he is in there!