Tag:Randy Wells
Posted on: May 24, 2011 5:14 pm
Edited on: May 24, 2011 5:26 pm

Cubs' injury updates: Soto, Wells, Garza, Cashner

By Matt Snyder

Lots of news came from the Wrigley Field crew early Monday evening, so we'll just wrap it all up right here.

Matt Garza, who was scratched from his scheduled start Sunday night in Boston, has landed on the disabled list. He has a bone bruise in his right (throwing) elbow (Chicago Sun-Times via Twitter). This is a huge blow to the Cubs. Garza has been their best pitcher in 2011, and an especially important cog given that 40 percent of the rotation has been hurt since the first week of the season. He's 2-4 with a 3.72 ERA and 68 strikeouts in 55 2/3 innings. He's reportedly expected back in early June.

As a corresponding move to the Garza DL-stint, the Cubs have recalled outfielder Lou Montanez from Triple-A Iowa. Montanez, 29, has been tearing up the Pacific Coast League, as he's hitting .369/.429/.573 with 19 extra-base hits and 43 RBI in 42 games. There's a need for an outfielder since Marlon Byrd was hit with a pitch and suffered facial fractures.

Fortunately for the Cubs, the timing of Garza's absence could have been much worse. Randy Wells has been injured since his first start of the season -- a six-inning victory where he only allowed one run on six hits -- but he is ready to rejoin the rotation. He'll get the ball Saturday (Sun Times via Twitter), which would have been Garza's spot had he stayed healthy.

Meanwhile, Wells should have a familiar member of the battery, because Geovany Soto is expected back for the weekend series (CSNChicago.com via Twitter). He had been out the past few weeks with a groin injury. Soto is hitting .226 with three home runs, 12 RBI and 13 runs this season. He's a huge offensive upgrade over Koyie Hill behind the plate and is familiar with most of the Cubs' pitching staff.

Finally, Andrew Cashner dodged a bullet. The young starting pitcher has been on the disabled list since injuring his rotator cuff in his first start of the season. Cashner was working his way back when he suffered a setback last week. There were fears initially that he might have to have season-ending surgery, but the Cubs have now received two doctors' opinions that he doesn't need surgery (CSNChicago.com via Twitter).

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Posted on: May 20, 2011 6:49 pm

Randy Wells to return to Cubs next week

By Evan Brunell

WellsThe Cubs will finally and mercifully get Randy Wells back next Friday or Saturday against Pittsburgh, as the Chicago Tribune writes. This will allow the team to demote Casey Coleman and his 6.03 ERA.

Wells has been hobbled by a right forearm strain that has kept him out since making his first start on April 4. Owner of a career 3.62 ERA with the Cubs in 60 starts out of 63 games, he will immediately upgrade the rotation of the 19-23 Cubs in danger of sinking into irrelevancy by the time Wells can even return.

The other injured starter, Andrew Cashner, is being sent to see Dr. Lewis Yocum (uh-oh) for a second opinion on his shoulder injury. Cashner experienced tightness in his rotator cuff while rehabbing last week and has been shut down. The Cubs say they aren't worried about Cashner needing surgery, but also don't expect him back before the All-Star break at the earliest.

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Posted on: May 13, 2011 1:26 pm

Cubs' Wells ready for rehab assignment

By Matt Snyder

Cubs starting pitcher Randy Wells made his first start in 2011, but then was sent to the disabled list with a forearm injury and has been there ever since. Tuesday, though, he'll make a big step in his return to the big-league mound. He is expected to make a minor-league rehab start. (CSNChicago.com via Twitter) It's pretty reasonable to expect two or three starts before he's ready to rejoin the Cubs, but that still has him up before the end of the month.

Normally, getting a No. 4 starting pitcher back would be good news, but not great news. This is even better than great news for the Cubs. A cursory glance at the standings shows the Cubs 16-20 and five games out of first place already in the NL Central. But consider that Wells and No. 5 starter Andrew Cashner both had sparkling debuts to the 2011 season and have since been on the disabled list. Further consider that, in their place, Casey Coleman and James Russell have gone 1-7 with a 8.16 ERA in 10 starts. The Cubs have lost all four games Russell started and four of the six games Coleman has started. If Wells and Cashner had been healthy all season, it's reasonable to say the Cubs go at least 5-5 in those 10 games, if not better -- not to mention the residual effect a less-stressed bullpen would have in the other games.

Wells, 28, worked six innings and allowed only one run while striking out six and picking up the win in his only start of the season. He finished sixth in Rookie of the Year voting in 2009 before a down season in 2010.

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Category: MLB
Posted on: April 22, 2011 2:33 pm

Wells, Cashner throw off flat ground

By Matt Snyder

Randy Wells and Andrew Cashner seem to be pretty well connected. They were the winners of the final two rotation spots for the Cubs coming out of spring training. Each had one good start but hasn't pitched since. They were both placed on the disabled list April 8 with injuries to the throwing arm (Wells in his forearm, Cashner in his shoulder). Friday, they both took a step forward in recovery, throwing what was described as a "light session." Neither was throwing off the mound, just flat ground.

"It felt good," Wells said. "It was just a light catch. We didn't really want to push anything this early."

"I was excited to come in today -- I got to throw the ball and be a part of the team again," Cashner said. "(The shoulder) feels real good, we just need some warm weather." (Chicago Tribune )

So, it's progress. Just not great progress. Before returning to the hill for the Cubs, Cashner and Wells will need to throw a bullpen off the actual mound a few times, then go through a minor-league rehab assignment. There's no real timetable in place, but it doesn't sound like either is going to be back soon.

In the meantime, the Cubs have Casey Coleman in the rotation and have twice used a Little League approach -- using a reliever as the starter and trying to work an entire game with relief pitchers. Not surprisingly, the Cubs are 0-2 in those games. It would behoove the team to grab a minor-league pitcher and use him as an actual starter at some point. Even if the guy gets knocked around, he can work a few innings and alleviate some of the strain on the bullpen.

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Posted on: April 12, 2011 3:26 pm

Cubs add veteran lefty Davis

By C. Trent Rosecrans

Doug DavisWith Andrew Cashner and Randy Wells placed on the disabled list, the Cubs search for pitching led them to veteran lefty Doug Davis.

Davis, 35, signed a minor-league contract that could be worth more than $1.7 million in salary and bonuses, ESPN.com's Jerry Crasnick tweets. Davis has been sent to extended spring training in Arizona.

Davis has a career 91-101 record with a 4.38 ERA in 12 seasons with the Rangers, Blue Jays, Brewers and Diamondbacks. Davis was 1-4 with a 7.51 ERA in eight starts for Milwaukee last season. He hasn't pitched since July 9 of last year because of a virus in the lining of his heart and also had surgery to repair a flexor-tendon tear.

Last week the Cubs signed 38-year-old right-hander Ramon Ortiz to a minor-league deal.

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Posted on: April 6, 2011 11:42 am

Cubs putting pair of starters on DL

By C. Trent Rosecrans

Andrew CashnerOn Tuesday, Andrew Cashner made his major-league debut, allowing just three baserunners and a run through 5 1/3 innings. On Wednesday, he made his debut on the major-league disabled list with a strained rotator cuff.

Oh, and Cashner isn't the only one. Randy Wells is also headed to the DL with forearm strain.

Neither will throw for two weeks, Cubs general manager Jim Hendry said, but neither will need surgery (via CSNChicago.com's Patrick Mooney on Twitter).

Cashner and Wells pitched well the last two days. Cashner left with a 4-1 lead that the bullpen blew before a comeback victory against the Diamondbacks on Tuesday, while Wells picked up the win on Monday, allowing six hits and a run in six innings.

Cubs manager Mike Quade said he won't have either for the next three or four weeks, but did say, "This could be a lot worse."

It could, but it's not real good right now.

Casey Coleman will be called up from Triple-A Iowa to join the Cubs' rotation.

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Posted on: April 4, 2011 5:30 pm

Cubs win in front of lowest attendance since '02

By Matt Snyder

Sure, there are outliers, but usually when you watch a game involving the Cubs and Wrigley Field, it's a rarity to see more than a few empty seats. As you can see from the background of the picture here, it was a veritable ghost town in Wrigley Monday afternoon.

The paid attendance was actually 26,292, so there were thousands and thousands of no-shows. The 47-degrees and 23 m.p.h wind likely contributed to the decisions of so many people to skip out on the game. Even so, the paid attedance was the lowest figure since September of 2002. (Paul Sullivan of Chicago Tribune via Twitter)

The few who did show up saw a Cubs victory. Randy Wells served up a home run to Willie Bloomquist to open the game, but the Diamondbacks didn't score again the rest of the game. A solo home run for Alfonso Soriano tied the game in the third and a bases-loaded sacrifice fly from Carlos Pena in the fourth tied it up. The Cubs added two insurance runs in the eighth before Carlos Marmol bounced back from Sunday's blown save to lock it down in the ninth. It took Marmol a second to get himself into gear, too. He walked the first batter he faced and then went 2-0 to Kelly Johnson. He then settled in and didn't allow a baserunner the rest of the way.

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Posted on: March 25, 2011 3:11 pm
Edited on: March 25, 2011 5:33 pm

Cubs likely to rid themselves of Silva soon

By Matt Snyder

As the last days of spring training pass by, it's becoming increasingly likely that Carlos Silva will not appear in a Cubs uniform in 2011. Randy Wells has been named the fourth starter in the rotation. Jeff Samardzija, Andrew Cashner and James Russell have made the team, which leaves just one open roster spot. The smart money is on Cashner making the rotation as the fifth starter, which leaves the last roster opening for a long reliever. Braden Looper, Marcos Mateo and Casey Coleman are in the mix with Silva. (Chicago Tribune via Twitter)

The Cubs were reportedly hoping for some trade interest after Silva's last outing -- his first good one of the spring -- but there's nothing going on that front. (Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com ) In fact, the Cubs are willing to eat "a considerable amount" of Silva's $11.5 million salary this season just to get rid of him. (New York Post )

I don't even understand how it's a discussion -- and maybe it isn't. Silva was 2-6 with a 6.15 ERA and allowed opposing players to have an .858 OPS last season from June 12 on. He's been horrible this spring, in addition to complaining about not having a starting rotation spot handed to him and getting in a fight with a teammate -- the mild-mannered Aramis Ramirez.

The Cubs have money. Plus, trading Milton Bradley for Silva last offseason actually saved the team $5 million. The main reason for the deal was to get rid of Bradley. That happened and anything Silva gave the team last season was gravy. It's over now, so it's time to move on from the initial mistake, which was the multi-year signing of Bradley.

It's time to let the extremely promising Cashner enter the rotation and let someone worthwhile occupy the middle relief role. Whether it's a seasoned veteran like Looper or a youngster, either option is better than an albatross like Silva.

UPDATE: Well, so much for that. The Cubs have cut Braden Looper -- who plans to retire -- and Silva has made the team, barring any last-minute changes. (Chicago Sun-Times via Twitter)

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The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com