Chicago Cubs 2016 NL Central Championship Gear

justin grimm featureJustin Grimm is getting close to throwing in a game, according to Cubs GM Jed Hoyer (Tribune, ESPN, Carrie Muskat). Grimm, who has been on the disabled list with forearm inflammation since the end of Spring Training, could throw in a simulated game or an extended Spring Training game this weekend. I know it’s probably seemed like a long, slow recovery, but that’s definitely a good sign.

If that session goes well, my best guess is that Grimm could do another one or two of those before heading out on a rehab assignment. From there, he might need two or three appearances to be ready to rejoin the Cubs’ pen, perhaps in the mid-May range. That would be your optimistic timeline, anyway.

The news on Neil Ramirez isn’t quite as good – at least not yet. The righty, who has been out since April 16 with shoulder inflammation, is throwing on flat ground in Arizona, but not yet off the mound. As we said back when the injury was first revealed, the good news was that it wasn’t a structural problem, but it’s still going to take time for him to return. The fact that he’s throwing at all is positive, and means that the inflammation is down. I wouldn’t set your expectations for seeingĀ Ramirez back anytime beforeĀ June, though.

Tsuyoshi Wada (groin) was in Chicago yesterday, doing his normal between-start bullpen work, but with the benefit of Cubs pitching coach Chris Bosio checking things out:

Wada is on a rehab assignment at Iowa, and will likely keep starting there until a need develops on the big league team, or his 30-day rehab assignment runs out.

Lastly, Hoyer provided an update on infielder Tommy La Stella, who’s been out since the first series of the season with a strained left side. He’s throwing and working out in the pool in Arizona, but isn’t hitting yet. That suggests he won’t be back any time soon.

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