CHICAGO -- Reds center fielder Shin-Soo Choo was not in Wednesday's starting lineup. He was given a break for multiple reasons, but mainly with an eye toward at keeping his body fresh.
"We're playing 20 in a row," Reds manager Dusty Baker said. "How I program these guys down the stretch is going to have something to do with how strong they are down the stretch. He's playing center field and leading off, and that's a lot of work.
"His hand has been bothering him. It's a good day for him not to hit."
Choo snapped a 0-for-16 skid with a single Sunday against the Padres and was 1-for-his-last-23 before hitting a two-run double in the 11th inning Tuesday to give the Reds a 6-4 win against the Cubs.
Chris Heisey led off and played center field for the first time this season. The nod might have normally gone to Derrick Robinson, but he was optioned to Triple-A Louisville on Sunday to make room for Ryan Ludwick's activation from the disabled list.
"I asked him and have been watching him," Baker said of Heisey. "Without Robinson here, he's going to have to do it sometimes."
Mark Sheldon is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Mark My Word, and follow him on Twitter @m_sheldon. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.