Javier Baez was activated from the disabled list Tuesday and appeared in his first game for Iowa since June 7 when he broke his finger sliding into second base.
In four rehab games for the AZL Cubs, Baez was 5-for-12 with a double and a walk. Baez batted third and played shortstop Tuesday. And Javier Baez was 2-for-5 with two home runs and a strikeout.
Kyle Schwarber is working with Dave Martinez on outfield drills. And Joe Maddon said during his weekly spot on The Score that he could get a start in the outfield “relatively soon.” Maddon wants to make sure Martinez is comfortable with Schwarber playing in the outfield before he sees extended time at a position other than catcher.
Schwarber played left field during the ninth inning of Sunday’s loss to the Phillies. Schwarber caught the only ball hit his way.
With Jon Lester and Jake Arrieta scheduled to start Wednesday and Thursday, will Maddon insert Schwarber in the outfield and use Chris Coghlan in the infield? Maddon said Tuesday the offense has to step it up.
Neil Ramirez and the Roster
Neil Ramirez has not been used since Saturday and was unavailable Tuesday after he could not get loose. Ramirez could be on the way back to the DL according to multiple reports. Joe Maddon did not go into specifics during his post-game meeting. Maddon said he needed to find out more information.
Ramirez told ESPN Chicago prior to Tuesday’s game that he was okay. But anyone that has seen him pitch this season knows something is not right. The velocity is down and Maddon is not using him in high-leverage situations.
Neil Ramirez was scheduled to be checked out by team doctors and the Cubs will know more Wednesday.
Clayton Richard pitched a very good game Tuesday for the wrong Cubs’ team. After being caught in the numbers following the big league team’s extra innings victory in Cincinnati, the front office DFA’d him in order to bring up a reliever to help a spent bullpen. Richard passed through waivers and was optioned to Triple-A Iowa.
Richard made his I-Cubs’ debut Tuesday and pitched seven innings of shutout ball. Richard allowed two hits with no walks and four strikeouts on 88 pitches, 67 for strikes.
When asked about Richard following Tuesday night’s game, Joe Maddon said, “I heard it was spectacular. Wrong city.”
Richard could not be recalled for Tuesday’s game. He will be eligible for Sunday’s start in Milwaukee.
Mike Olt played first base Tuesday for Iowa and collected two more hits in the I-Cubs win. Olt was 2-for-5 with a double, two runs scored and a strikeout.
Olt has raised his slash line at Iowa to .290/.353/.514 in 30 games with nine doubles, five home runs, 10 walks and 33 strikeouts for a .867 OPS.
In his last 23 games, Mike Olt is batting .305/.376/.524 with a .901 OPS.
• The Phillies have lucked into a perfect Cole Hamels storm according to Joel Sherman.
• The Cubs tried to acquire INF/OF Ben Zobrist from the A’s and RHP Jonathan Papelbon from the Phillies according to Comcast SportsNet. Zobrist was traded to Kansas City and Papelbon ended up with the Nationals. Patrick Mooney explored what’s next for the Cubs after missing out on both players.
• According to the Sun-Times, Joe Maddon and the players might have to find playoff path without deadline help.
• The Cubs needs at the deadline were exposed in loss to Rockies according to ESPN Chicago.
• Pitching is the number one priority for the Cubs according to Bruce Levine.
• The Nationals touched base with the Padres on Craig Kimbrel and the Reds on Aroldis Chapman according to Barry Svrluga before trading for Jonathan Papelbon. The price is too high for Kimbrel and Chapman. The Nationals would have had to send two of a group of players that included Trea Turner, Lucas Giolito, Reynaldo Lopez, Michael Taylor and Tyson Ross for either Kimbrel or Chapman.
News and Notes
• Speculation kicked into high-gear as soon as Joe Maddon removed Starlin Castro from Tuesday’s game as part of a double-switch in the eighth inning. Addison Russell moved to shortstop and Chris Coghlan stayed in at second base after pinch-hitting in the seventh. Coghlan homered and Maddon wanted to keep Coghlan’s bat in the game.
• Joe Maddon likes LHP Travis Wood in his current role but did not rule out that he could be a possibility to start Sunday in Milwaukee.
• The Cubs transferred LHP Zac Rosscup to Triple-A Iowa Tuesday to continue his rehab.
• High-A Myrtle Beach’s Mark Johnson will be the manager of the Mesa Solar Sox this fall in the AFL.
• Tommy La Stella worked out at Wrigley for the second day according to Mark Gonzales.
• Former Cubs’ outfielder David DeJesus was traded from Tampa to the Angels on Tuesday.
• The Cubs’ closer duties are in state of flux once again according to the Tribune.
This Day In Cubstory
2014 – In the longest game, by time, in Cubs’ history, John Baker became the first position player to earn a victory since the Orioles’ Chris Davis in 2012. In the six hour and 27 minute marathon at Wrigley Field, the backup catcher tossed a scoreless 16th inning and scored the winning run in the bottom of the inning on a Starlin Castro sac fly. The Cubs beat the Rockies 4-3.
2006 – Greg Maddux beat the Cardinals 4-2 at Wrigley Field and earned career-win No. 327 in his last start in a Cubs’ uniform. Maddux walked off the field to a thunderous, standing ovation.
1998 – Cubs traded Jon Garland to the White Sox for Matt Karchner
1989 – Eric Jokisch, born
1988 – In an 8-3 win over Kevin Gross and the Phillies in Philadelphia, Rick Sutcliffe stole home. Sutcliffe was the first pitcher to steal home since Pascual Perez in 1984. Sutcliffe was on the front end of a double steal with Mitch Webster. Sutcliffe was the first Cubs pitcher to steal home since Hippo Vaughn in 1919.
1970 – The Cubs purchased Joe Pepitone from the Astros
1968 – The Angels purchased Dennis Bennett from the Cubs
1954 – Cubs signed amateur free agent Bob Anderson
1951 – Manager Phil Cavarretta hit a pinch-hit grand slam off Robin Roberts in the seventh inning of the second game of a doubleheader against the Phillies. The Cubs swept the doubleheader 5-4 and 8-6 at Wrigley and Cavarretta drove in seven runs in the two games.
1951 – Ken Kravec, born
1916 – Cubs acquired Otto Knabe and Art Wilson from the Pirates for William Fischer and Frank Schulte