Matt Garza announced on his Twitter account that he will make a rehab start on Wednesday, May 1. Garza acknowledged he had a tiny setback but “everything is all good now.” Garza said that May 1 is his day. Garza participated in PFPs with the Smokies on Friday and apparently his long-toss session went well. Garza is expected to throw from flat ground again on Saturday after not feeling any tightness or soreness on Friday. Reports suggested that Garza would throw a bullpen on Sunday or Monday in preparation for his first game action on Wednesday since July 21.
The Cubs scratched Garza from his first scheduled rehab start last Wednesday with what was labeled as a “dead arm”, similar to what most pitchers go through during Spring Training. The Cubs were thinking Garza might only need three rehab starts prior to his latest setback after completing the two-inning simulated game last Friday in Milwaukee. Dale Sveum admitted on Friday that Garza will likely need four rehab starts now. The Tribune reported with four rehab outings, Garza could be ready to return around May 21. Garza is expected to throw two-innings on Wednesday.
Buster Olney thinks Garza will be one of the top trade candidates once he proves he is healthy … and depending on what the Rays decide to do with David Price, Garza could be the best available starting pitcher on the market.
Mark Appel and Jonathan Gray
According to a report from the Sun-Times on Thursday, the Cubs have narrowed their focus to two pitchers they could select with the second pick in the upcoming draft … Stanford’s Mark Appel and Oklahoma’s Jonathan Gray. Gordon Wittenmyer’s sources have indicated for weeks that the Cubs were leaning toward drafting one of the two college pitchers.
According to the report, Dale Sveum pretty much confirmed what the information Wittenmyer received from his sources. Sveum has watched film of the Cubs’ top 10 candidates and said it would be hard not to take one of those two pitchers.
According to a report from the Tribune, Kyuji Fujikawa completed a 25-pitch bullpen session Friday and is scheduled to throw another one again on Monday. Fujikawa will make two rehab appearances before the Cubs activate him from the DL.
Fujikawa has been rehabbing in Chicago since he was placed on the DL back on April 13 with a strained right forearm.
The game between the Cubs and Rangers that was postponed on April 17 will be made up on Monday, May 6. The game will be televised on WCIU with first pitch scheduled for 7:05pm CDT.
According to a report from the Tribune, Jed Hoyer and Theo Epstein never told Dale Sveum how to use Carlos Marmol or Kyuji Fujikawa.
Brett Jackson returned to Iowa’s starting lineup on Friday night. Jackson served as the I-Cubs’ DH.
Anthony Rizzo liked the way he swung the bat on Friday night … and it was not the two home runs he liked, but it was the single to left center in the eighth inning. Rizzo indicated his swing is where he wants it to be right now, he just has to work on consistency.
Pierce Johnson set a new career high with seven strikeouts in a career-high 5 2/3 innings on Friday night.
Kerry Wood told DNAinfo.com Chicago that Wrigley Field needs to be repaired in order for the Cubs to attract free agents.
Logan Watkins drew four walks on Thursday night … one short of the Pacific Coast League record.
Ian Stewart did not play in Iowa’s 5-4 loss to Omaha on Friday night. Stewart is 3-for-27 in eight games with the I-Cubs that includes three walks, a double, three runs scored, three RBI and 10 strikeouts.
Josh Vitters was placed on the DL on April 9 with muscle spasms in his back. Vitters has been participating in extended spring training in Arizona and is hoping to be activated from the DL next week.