Cubs Plan Another Rehab Start for Arrieta and Olt Has a Chance to Be Everyday Third Baseman

The Cubs announced Tuesday night that Jake Arrieta will make at least one more rehab start before he joins the rotation. Arrieta told the beat writers he feels he is ready to be activated from the DL, but the Cubs would like for him to make one “more short start.”

Rick Renteria said “Arrieta’s next start would likely be a shorter outing at a minor league affiliate, the way pitchers have a final tune-up near the end of Spring Training” according to a report from Comcast SportsNet.

Jake Arrieta increased his pitch count from 82 in his third rehab outing to 94 on Monday night but “the Cubs need to get a better read on the 28-year old right hander and how he fits into their long-range plans” according to Patrick Mooney. Arrieta will likely make his next start on Saturday, a day after Carlos Villanueva takes on Matt Garza in opener of the three-game series in Milwaukee.

Arrieta can be on a rehab assignment for 30 days, he made his first start on April 5, so the Cubs have time. The Cubs are in a stretch of 30 games in 31 days with May 1 being the only scheduled off day. Villanueva’s spot in the rotation rolls back around on April 30 in the finale in Cincinnati and if Arrieta is kept on schedule he could start the opener of the three-game series at Wrigley against the Cardinals on May 2.

The Cubs have not said when or where Jake Arrieta will make his “short” rehab start.

Mike Olt

According to a report from the Sun-Times, Mike Olt “is going to get his chance” to be the Cubs starting third baseman. Rick Renteria said “he plans to scrap the third base rotation he’s used since the season started.”

The Cubs have been very cautious with Olt. Renteria said Tuesday night the team’s approach with him has been “calculated” but Renteria now plans “to throw him out there and let him run with it a little bit.”

Mike Olt has started 10 of the Cubs 19 games and he leads the team in home runs (4) and is tied for the team lead in RBI (9).

Pierce Johnson

The Smokies activated RHP Pierce Johnson from the disabled list on Tuesday and he made his first start at the Double-A level on Tuesday night. Johnson was sidelined early in Spring Training with soreness in his hamstring and he began the season on the disabled list.

Johnson pitched four-plus innings on Tuesday and the first four innings went rather well. Johnson left the game with two on and no outs in the fifth after allowing his first run of the night. Ryan Searle replaced Johnson and could not work out of the jam Johnson left him with. Searle struggled again and the Barons ended up scoring eight runs in the fifth inning in route to a 14-3 drubbing of the Smokies.

Pierce Johnson was charged with three runs on four this with four walks and five strikeouts in four-plus innings. Johnson threw 78 pitches, 44 for strikes. While the final line does not look good at least Johnson was able to come off the disabled list and pitch.

Jorge Soler

Jorge Soler has been out since the first game of the season with a right hamstring injury. And the team finally provided an update on Soler.

According to Carrie Muskat, Jorge Soler is rehabbing at the Cubs’ facility in Mesa and “doing some baseball activities” but he is “not ready to play in games in extended Spring Training.”

The Cubs will not rush Soler back and risk losing him for the entire season again.

News and Notes

Kris Bryant extended his on-base streak to 18 games on Tuesday with a 3-for-5 performance at the plate that included a double and a run scored. Bryant is now hitting .311/.440/.590/1.030 in 18 games with five doubles, four home runs and 11 walks.

Bruce Miles posted on Twitter that Jeff Samardzija (4), Jason Hammel (4) and Travis Wood (3) have recorded multiple quality starts this season. The Cubs ERA in quality starts is 2.04 this season.

Starlin Castro is producing at the plate and is playing good defense … and the Cubs see Castro raising his game to the next level according to a report from Comcast SportsNet.

Lester Strode reportedly spent a lot of time working with Jose Veras prior to Tuesday’s game. Veras participated in a towel drill as he tries to work out issues he’s having warming up. According to ESPN Chicago, Veras is not going to give in to failure.

Five current or former D-Cubs are in the Chicago Cubs plans according to a report from Sean Kernan.

Follow ChicagoCubsOnline on Twitter: @TheCCO and @TheCCO_Minors

Quote of the Day

"The more reasons you have for achieving your goal, the more determined you will become." - Brian Tracy

Share on Fancred
  • Pingback: Cubs Plan Another Rehab Start for Arrieta and Olt Has a Chance to Be Everyday Third Baseman - Cubs Chronicles()

  • Ripsnorter1

    The Cubs’ Infield
    Finally, good news: Olt to get his chance to start on an everyday basis. What took so long?

    I was glad Valbuena started at 2B last night. He needs to play there everyday against RHP. Bonifacio should get the LHP starts–we can put up with his defense on those days. I figure–and have stated already several times this earlier this year–that this is the career year for Valbuena. He could hit .250 with 20 taters with regular playing time in 2014. Meanwhile Ricky Renteria would be making a mistake to play Bonifacio daily at 2B. His defense is awful.

    Barney: why didn’t they just non-tender him last year? He needs to go off this roster. Let him catch on with the worst team I’ve seen in MLB: the Diamondbacks. Man alive, do they look awful!

    • Tony_H

      C’mon Rip, you really have to ask what took so long?

    • Patrick_Schaefer

      Barney will probably platoon with Valbuena and Bonifacio will start in CF is my guess.

      • Ripsnorter1

        You are probably right. And that means RR is probably wrong.

  • Ripsnorter1

    The Cubs’ first four game sweep in years and years.

    I haven’t done the research, but the Cubs should come up with their first four game sweep in quite awhile. We should sweep this totally inept team called the Diamondbacks. We face Wade Miley tonight, and tomorrow’s Diamondback starter is suffering through a woeful start: Mr. Bolsinger. His 10.29 ERA over 73 IP–teams are hitting .371 against him with a 2.20 WHIP–should mean a four game sweep of this awful team.

    It feels good to win again, even if it’s against this team!

    • Tony_H

      Predicting a 4 game sweep after only 2 games….what could go wrong! Just remember the Diamondbacks are a team that has made moves the last 2 years, going for it.

      • GaryLeeT

        Going for it is what the first place Yankees, and Dodgers did. There was zero chance for the DBacks to compete with that starting rotation, and everybody, including themselves, knew it.

        • Tony_H

          Amazing how not even out of April people forget.

          http://www.blessyouboys.com/2014/3/7/5464008/2014-arizona-diamondbacks-team-preview

          “If both of those moves work out like they should on paper and the team stays healthy, the Diamondbacks could be in the playoff picture come September.”

          “The Diamondbacks’ 2014 season could go any of a number of ways, but it’s hard to imagine this roster being a sub-.500 team in the NL West.”

          • GaryLeeT

            Rob Rogacki speaks for the baseball world? Thanks for the laugh.

          • Tony_H

            Actually I believe he speaks for Rob Rogacki, where did you get that he spoke for the baseball world? And please let me know which one person does speak for the baseball world.

            I don’t agree with all the moves the Diamondbacks have made the last 2 years, but they have been doing exactly what you and others want the Cubs to do, make moves to try and win more games now and have a chance to make the playoffs. They did that, it is not working.

          • GaryLeeT

            where did you get that he spoke for the baseball world?

            You quoted him as proof the DBacks were going for it, but even he was wishy washy at the end. Anybody who thought that adding Arroyo solidified a rotation that was already suspect, was deluding themselves. Baseball Prospectus had them at 80-82. That seemed reasonable.

          • Tony_H

            I didn’t say he did, you brought it up.

      • Ripsnorter1

        Injuries go wrong. Corbin–their TOR starter–went down. They have OF injuries as well.

        We have Samardzija pitching today and tomorrow is….Edwin Jackson.

        And THAT could go wrong for the Cubs!

        • Tony_H

          Yes injuries change everything. EJAX had a good last outing, he may find a way to do it again.

          • Ripsnorter1

            He may improve. His last outing was not good: 5.2 IP, 8 H, 2 BB, only 4 K. He got a win, but it wasn’t really a “good” start.

          • Tony_H

            That was a good start, only 2 Runs in 5.2 IP, 5 K’s. That would be 3.17 ERA, I would take that. In individual games, I don’t worry about H/BB, only as overall numbers and overall his WHIP is bad. But this was a good start.

          • Ripsnorter1

            When does the CCO Fantasy column start?

          • Tony_H

            I need to talk to Neil, with my new job, I have been gone most Sunday nights and not back to mid to late week. I should be done with all that now.

          • Ripsnorter1

            No hurry on my part..just inquiring. : )

          • Denver Mike

            This is an area where the stat line doesn’t tell the story. I watched the start, and it wasn’t good.

            EDITED: It may have been a good start for Jackson, but it would have been a mediocre start at best for any respectable #3 pitcher.

        • JasonOfTheBurbs

          Miley is good. So good that tony wont trade him to me.

          Renteria will trot out barney and ruggiano for that lefty…giving up 2 outs.

          • Ripsnorter1

            LOL!

          • Ripsnorter1

            Miley? On Tony’s team?

            Now I know why he was so upset and my post!

            LOL

          • Tony_H

            To be fair, you also wanted Rizzo in the deal.

          • Ripsnorter1

            I’d do that deal in a heartbeat, not even knowing what he offered you!

            LOL

            Gotta stick you once in a while….

          • Tony_H

            Not given up Rizzo without someone vastly overpaying.

          • Ripsnorter1

            You’re in love!

            LOL

            How about Miggy Cabrera?

          • Tony_H

            Yes

          • Tony_H

            That would be a vast overpayment.

          • JasonOfTheBurbs

            I can read between the lines there buddy…another trade proposal will be sent soon!!!

          • BillyFinT

            By the way, I was trying to ramble about you losing to my fantasy team by a sheer point, but don’t know where everyone else would see it (and laugh). We desperately need a discussion board for it.

            A dashboard feature, perhaps?

          • Denver Mike

            Isn’t there a discussion board on the league homepage? I’m not in the league, nor have I played ESPN leagues, but most have this feature.

          • BillyFinT

            When you are in ESPN league, you know. It doesn’t work. The weblink was hidden in a conglomerate of tiny fonts, so I rarely could find the board. The weblink always requires me to login (never needed so in Yahoo). There’re no auto reminder of new posts, and the league frontpage is jammed with a mess of activities, hence, never viable to find any info of relevance to my respective team (and msg reply).

            I.e., the interface sucks, and I don’t know if it’s not a CCO league, I would ever want to stay. The human factor is a big plus, so I hope there’ll be somewhere better, more clean space, for managers to interact!

          • Tony_H

            I have to tell you, I like most things in ESPN fantasy baseball over Yahoo. CBS is still the best by far, but not sure they are worth $180 to run a custom league.

          • BillyFinT

            It’s easy to upgrade the interface. It’s been a wonder why Yahoo would not offer those options in H2H for pitching limit. They have all those in rotisserie. I don’t know how I’ll feel about these differences in the long run. It’s more important to enjoy the process with people who feel likewise.

          • Tony_H

            I was trying to find a way to pass through this time period where I lost to you by 1 point Also shows why I have pushed for pitching limits, you had 1 more start and won by 1 point. I lost the week before with 2 less starts.

          • BillyFinT

            I knew you would say that. We all say that. Rambling helps to dust off that sore loser away. But you know, it’s the nature of H2H showdown. Suck it!

          • Tony_H

            I know, but it is hard when I should be getting 1 or even 2 starts from Kershaw each week. The first year I have ever taken a SP before the 4th round of a draft, and he gets hurt.

          • http://theboardridersuite.wordpress.com/ Theboardrider

            Ruggiano hasn’t been atrocious. Hardly an automatic out against Wade Miley. Hopefully Lake goes instead though.

          • JasonOfTheBurbs

            I think lake will start against a lefty. Guesiing other of spots are bonifacio and ruggiano.

      • Ripsnorter1

        Are you expecting me to condemn the Diamondbacks because they made moves to improve their team? Come on, Tony!

        Last year they were 5th in BA, 5th in runs scored, 4th in OBP. That tells you that they have a core to work with.

        What are they supposed to do: trade Hill and Goldschmidt away for “prospects?” Put up last place teams for five years or more to await “the future?” Drive all the fans away? Come on, Tony!

        • Tony_H

          Nope, they are doing what they should do, I may disagree with some of their moves (Trumbo on a NL team, no way) but they have a core and are adding to it. No doubt they are going for it.

          I would actually trade Hill, put Gregorious at SS and Owings at 2B. Goldschmidt isn’t going anywhere.

          • JasonOfTheBurbs

            They traded eaton and have a messy of platoon. Pitching has been biggest issue.

          • http://theboardridersuite.wordpress.com/ Theboardrider

            They have to get better pitching, or bring up Archie. If he’s really not ready I don’t get what they are doing, since they seemed in the cusp last year.

            Don’t look now, but Rixxo is outplaying Goldschmidt! We’ll see where they finish but over, by the end of their careers, I expect Rizzo will be very similar.

    • BosephHeyden

      I would just like them to win a series.

  • Brp921

    I know it’s still early but I’m really starting to like Mike Olt. His defense last night was outstanding and I like his power. I think in time he might hit for more average too. Maybe we have finally found a perennial allstar third baseman.

    • GaryLeeT

      That is quite the leap you’re making there, my good man. However, got to love the opo HR off a righty, that he hit last night.

      • Brp921

        That’s why I preficed what I said with “it’s early” and added the maybe.

        • http://theboardridersuite.wordpress.com/ Theboardrider

          He definitely can hit with power. Lots of young guys hit for power but have trouble with average as rookies or 2nd year players. Let’s let him progress and see what happens. He needs to play 25 games in a month though.

    • Tony_H

      His power is real, but average wise, should top out at 250-260 and more realistically hover closer to 240.

      • Ripsnorter1

        I like your realistic outlook. He fans too much to hit more than .225-.260. If the K’s improve, his BA should improve.

        Remember, folks, he’s hitting .195 right now.

        • Tony_H

          I have had the same prediction for him all off season.

      • Brp921

        Yeah, he’ll have to make more contact to improve his average, but other guys have done it in the past. We’ll just have to wait and see.

        • DWalker

          he’s young and basicly lost a season so should still be thought of as a work in progress, but he will never hit for high average. Still, considerign he was almost a throw in for the trade, I’d say Cubs done good.

  • Steve Baier

    Olt definitely has some power potential. I know the BA isn’t great thus far but I’m hoping starting every day and warmer weather will really get him going.

  • JasonOfTheBurbs

    I like mike olt too…but why does everyone seem to forget how awesome aramis ramirez was for the cubs for several years?

    • Ripsnorter1

      Because Aram didn’t hit in cold weather, of which we have an abundance.

      Aram was great.

      • GaryLeeT

        If his start to this year is any indication, he still is.

        • Ripsnorter1

          Oh yes, he’s very good. Hitting in that heated stadium, now that helps!

          I wish the Cubs had a new stadium with a lid on it just like Miller Park. Forget Wrigley Field!

          • GaryLeeT

            I am actually starting to hate Wrigley, and the Chicago politics that go with it. Especially since (if we are to believe what we’ve been told) the lack of renovation, is keeping the team nailed to a Pirate like payroll. Trust me, if the Cubs moved, and started winning, that would be the new favorite destination of Cub fans.

    • BillyFinT

      You are right. Behind Longoria, Chipper, and Wright, ARam has been the fourth best third base man of our generation this Century.

    • John_CC

      What do you mean? Who has forgotten about Aramis and why would we be talking about him and the current Cubs woes?

      He had some truly great seasons, he was my favorite player on the team for a while.

  • BillyFinT

    My prayer is answered. More like, prayers. The Cubs have been adding pieces for sustainable pitching. Now they are developing one other single strength the Cubs have, the depth in third base men. A thumb up.