Monday, February 18, 2013

Matt Garza to get MRI; Tony Campana is now a Dback; Cubs Bunting Tournament Underway

Cubs starting pitcher Matt Garza suffered a mild lat strain during his first live batting practice session on Sunday at Fitch Park.  He will have an MRI to see how everything looks, but there's a good chance he will miss the start of the season.

Cubs starter Matt Garza will have an MRI to determine the extent of his lat strain (photo from Chicago Tribune)
The right hander was on the disabled list the last two months of the 2012 season with elbow soreness.  General Manager Jed Hoyer said, "The good news is his arm felt really strong.  It's unfortunate for sure and it's going to set him back a little bit.  But we're still really confident.  Our concern obviously was with the elbow injury that shut him down last year."

Since newly acquired pitcher Scott Baker is expected to start the season on the DL, that means that Travis Wood and Carlos Villanueva both have a good chance of starting the season in the rotation, even though manager Dale Sveum says he won't have to have his starting rotation pinned down until around March 20th. 

As expected, the Cubs traded outfielder Tony Campana to the Arizona Diamondbacks for minor league right handed pitchers Erick Leal and Jesus Castillo.  Both Leal and Castillo are 17-years old.  Hoyer said Leal is likely to pitch in the minors this year, while Castillo probably will pitch in the Dominican.  “Both of them we like a lot,” Hoyer said. “Both of them are projectable (as future major leaguers).  We did a lot of work with our scouts down in the D.R. and we feel very good about getting two projectable arms for Tony.”

Campana tweeted earlier today, "Thanks to the and fans for a great time and support... Really excited to get started with the ! "  It's too bad the Cubs didn't have a spot for the speedy Campy, who quickly became a fan favorite, but we wish him the best in Arizona.

On a lighter note, the Cubs second bunting tournament started today and bullpen catcher Andy Lane upset outfielder Dave Sappelt in the first round.  The competition has pitchers in one bracket and position players in another and has 64 players.  David DeJesus was the winner of last year's inaugural bunting tournament.

The bunting tournament field
Here are some photos from Spring Training:

First baseman Anthony Rizzo on photo day (photo from Chicago Tribune)

Alfonso Soriano and Jeff Samardzija on photo day (photo from Chicago Tribune)
43 more days until Opening Day!

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