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Cubs Spring Training 2012 Preview: Chicago Starts Camp On Saturday With Pitchers And Catchers

The Chicago Cubs finished the 2011 MLB season with 71-91 record, good for 5th place in the NL Central Division. They promptly underwent a massive personnel overhaul in the offseason, hiring former Boston Red Sox GM Theo Epstein and former San Diegos Padres GM Jed Hoyer.

The team has since traded for an almost entirely new pitching staff and begun to transition into a defense-focused team. Their reporting schedule looks as follows:

2012 Chicago Cubs Reporting Dates

Organization Pitchers & Catchers First Workout Position Players First full workout
Chicago Cubs Feb. 18 Feb. 19 Feb. 23 Feb. 24

The Cubs will get their first look at the new rotation on Saturday, a rotation expected to look like this:

Project Starting Rotation

1) Ryan Dempster
2) Matt Garza
3) Travis Wood
4) Chris Volstad
5) Paul Maholm

The team will also have open competition between Randy Wells, Casey Coleman and a number of other potential starters for the fifth starter and long man roles. Meanwhile, the team should have a trio of new faces in their starting lineup:

Projected Cubs Lineup

C Geovany Soto
1B Bryan LaHair
2B Darwin Barney
3B Ian Stewart
SS Starlin Castro
LF Alfonso Soriano
CF Marlon Byrd
RF David DeJesus

And here's a gander at the first week of Cactus League schedule for the Cubs:

Date Time Opponent Location
March 4
1:05 p.m. Oakland
Mesa
March 5
1:05 p.m. Oakland
Mesa
March 6
1:05 p.m. Colorado
Mesa
March 7
1:05 p.m. Kansas City
Surprise
March 8
1:05 p.m. Seattle
Mesa
March 9
1:05 p.m. White Sox
Glendale
March 10
1:05 p.m. Milwaukee
Maryvale

For more on the offseason, stay tuned to SB Nation Chicago. For more from around baseball, head over to Baseball Nation. To keep track of all rumors and happenings in the game, check out MLB Daily Dish.