Javier Baez is likely to return to the Iowa Cubs at any moment now, effectively ending his convalescence. A few other rehabbing Cubs to check in on …
- Tsuyoshi Wada made another start for the Iowa Cubs last night, and it was a good one: 6 IP, 0 ER (2 R), 4 H, 1 BB, 6 K. Wada threw just 85 pitches, though, so he still might not quite be up to a full outing as he recovers from a shoulder issue that sure sounded minor when he first suffered it over a month ago. Wada’s health and effectiveness is particularly important as he could very well wind up the Cubs’ fifth starter for August and September if the team doesn’t pick up a starter in trade this week. Even if they do, injuries pop up and Wada may be pressed into service. Dallas Beeler starts tonight for the Cubs (absent a last-minute trade), but if no deal is made this week, Wada could easily slide into that spot next time through the rotation if he’s ready to go.
- Zac Rosscup (shoulder) suddenly looks like a need in the Cubs’ pen, and he’s currently rocking minor leaguers – through five appearances in the AZL and at AA, Rosscup has 12 strikeouts in 4.1 innings. Yes, your math on that is correct: every single out he’s recorded except one has come via the strikeout. Presumably, he’ll move up to Iowa at some point soon, and will be available to the Cubs in the coming weeks. At a minimum, if healthy, he’ll join the big league team when rosters expand to the full 40 in September.
- And … brace yourself … A REAL TOMMY LA STELLA UPDATE! The cult hero, who will never be able to live up to the ability Cubs fans have imagined in their minds since he went down with a side injury back in April, was at Wrigley Field yesterday to take batting practice and work out with the team (Cubs.com). The expectation is that he’ll begin a rehab assignment soon. From there, my best guess is that he’s going to need at least a couple weeks to get back into game mode, and the Cubs’ roster could be very different by then. So, temper the expectations for now. Instead, dream only on the possibility that the Cubs could eventually have La Stella available off of the bench. As a high-contact lefty bat who can play a couple spots in the infield, that would be nice to have.
- La Stella talks more about his tricky injury here.