Maddon brings cheetah for pregame visit to Wrigley Field
CHICAGO (AP) Chicago Cubs manager Joe Maddon doesn't want his players sweating the pressure of a playoff chase.
So for the second straight day, Wrigley Field turned into an animal kingdom, this time with a visit from a cheetah named Bibi, who was a hit with Cubs players prior to their game against Milwaukee on Wednesday night.
''(Pitcher) Travis Wood has been giving me a lot of heat for not having any animals in the clubhouse,'' Maddon said. ''I said, `Just be patient.'''
Players like star rookie third baseman Kris Bryant and first baseman Anthony Rizzo posed for selfies with Bibi on the field, quickly adding the photos to their social media channels.
Bibi, visiting from the Columbus Zoo in Ohio, appeared at Wrigley a day after a pink flamingo, a sloth, a penguin and a snow leopard all were brought in.
Bibi, who can go from 0-60 mph in four seconds, sat patiently and purred contently on the field as players snapped photos. Maddon, who once brought a 20-foot python into the Tampa Bay Rays clubhouse while he was managing there, said pregame events like Wednesday's serve a purpose.
''I like it,'' Maddon said. ''This time of the year, things tend to get a little uptight. I don't want that. There's no reason to be. These little sojourns from the normal I think are good for everybody.''