Travis Wood Will Debut Today and Other Bullets

Social Navigation

Travis Wood Will Debut Today and Other Bullets

Chicago Cubs

Travis Wood will indeed start for Matt Garza today, who is still under the weather. Garza’s next start has been pushed back all the way to Friday, as he recovers from flu-like symptoms (baseball code for the pukes or the shits).

  • Calling up Wood will require a roster decision, which hopefully isn’t a permanent one (i.e., dumping a guy, or risking dumping a guy), because – by my math – when Garza starts on Friday, he won’t have pitched for 12 days. That means the Cubs could have put Garza on the DL today, and then let him start next Monday. It would be silly to lose a player just so Garza can start three days earlier. Going up and down the roster, it’s tough to figure out just what the move is going to be. Most of the pitchers cannot be freely optioned (except for Rafael Dolis and James Russell, neither of whom is going anywhere), so I wonder if it could be a position player move. Could be something whacky like dumping Blake DeWitt, and then calling up Adrian Cardenas when Wood is ready to go back down.
  • Wood will get his first chance to impress after being acquired in the Sean Marshall trade this Winter. He pitched abysmally in the Spring, and then adequately at AAA Iowa so far this year (the ERA isn’t great, and he’s given up a lot of hits, but his Ks and BBs are solid – also, fly ball pitchers in the PCL = more homers than usual).
  • Jeff Baker must’ve eaten the same sandwich as Garza, because he, too, is feeling the flu-like symptoms. Maybe he’ll go to the DL to make room for Wood?
  • Chris Volstad, who’s fallen victim to one bad inning in five of his six starts this year, concedes he may be having some problems out of the stretch. Dale Sveum agrees. Having watched him, that sounds about right. When guys get on base, something just seems off about his confidence/approach/control/etc. Just off. Let’s get that figured out, guys.
  • Randy Wells, who failed to do much to keep himself in the bigs in his two-start fill-in for Ryan Dempster, keeps on admitting that his own effort and performance is the problem. “I’m trying to do too much,” Wells said, according to the Des Moines Register. “Up there [in the Majors], you’re trying to pitch and not give up runs so you can stay, instead of pitching to your strengths. Down here … maybe I’ve been a little lackadaisical … maybe a little bitter, but baseball is baseball.” The honesty is great, Randy, but, like, how about doing the opposite of what you’re saying? Start not being lackadaisical. Start not being bitter. Stop feeling like you got screwed, and start pitching your way back to the bigs with a renewed vigor. I fully believe that Randy Wells is a big-league-caliber pitcher. He’s just got to remember how to do it.

Author: Brett Taylor

Brett Taylor is the Editor and Lead Cubs Writer at Bleacher Nation, and you can find him on Twitter at @BleacherNation and @Brett_A_Taylor.