The Return of Ted Lilly … and Other Cubs Notes

Ted Lilly returned from the birth of his first child, Theodore Roosevelt Lilly IV, and threw to hitters on Thursday. Lilly threw two sets of 20 pitches. The Cubs will decide the next step for Lilly after they find out how he feels on Friday.

According to a report from ESPN Chicago, the plan for Ted Lilly is to “throw to hitters again in a few day” and “follow that with a simulated game.” If all goes as planned, Lilly is expected to make one Cactus League start before camp ends. After that, Lilly would make three minor league starts before rejoining the Cubs.

Angel Guzman decided to have surgery on his right shoulder. Dr. James Andrews will perform the surgery on Tuesday in Birmingham, Ala. Guzman will try to rehab the shoulder after surgery. According to a report from ESPN Chicago, an MRI last Friday revealed a tear in his shoulder that is related to “an injury that caused the Cubs to shut him down with two weeks left in the 2009 season.”

Dr. Andrews performed Guzman’s other two surgeries … a torn labrum in 2003 and Tommy John in 2007. Guzman is out indefinitely.

Here are the notes from Arizona, including updates on the bullpen and Aramis Ramirez

Notes from Mesa

  • Aramis Ramirez was scratched from Thursday’s lineup with continued soreness in his right triceps. Ramirez stayed in Mesa and took batting practice. Ramirez is expected back in the lineup on Friday … but if he’s not able to play in the next couple of day, the Cubs will send Ramirez to minor league camp to get his at bats.
  • Sean Marshall threw a five-inning simulated game on on a backfield Thursday at HoHoKam.
  • Jeff Samardzija got his work in on Wednesday during a minor league intrasquad game at Fitch Park.
  • According to a report from Bruce Levine, “Esmailin Caridad and Justin Berg are the leaders for a setup role and sixth- or seventh-inning pitcher.”
  • The Cubs and Dodgers set a single-game Cactus League attendance record on Thursday. 13,391 fans filed through the gates at Camelback Ranch … the record might fall on Friday when the Cubs face the Sox. The Cubs have been involved in nine of the ten largest crowds in Cactus League history.
  • According to a report from Cubs.com, Jeff Gray threw “three batting practice innings” on Thursday. The next step for Gray, who has been sidelined by a strained groin, is a simulated game. Gray will likely begin the year on the DL or in the minors. He is “running out of time to make the Cubs’ Opening Day roster” according to a report on Cubs.com. Gray has one minor league option left.

Well, there is the update from Mesa … and I’m sticking to it!

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