MILWAUKEE _ The Cubs sent Jeff Samardzija to Iowa this evening when they activated Ted Lilly to pitch against the Brewers tonight at 6:10. The earlier game time is a good thing with slow-working junkballer Doug Davis going for Milwaukee.
One thing the Cubs won’t do with Samardzija is put him in Iowa’s starting rotation. They’ll keep him in the pen. In the past, the Cubs have had Samardzija start in the minor leagues only to recall him to relieve at the big-league level. His numbers in 4 games for the Cubs were 0-1 with an 18.90 ERA and a 3.30 WHIP.
“We’ve got a lot of starting pitching here,” Lou said. “For him to get back quickly, out of the bullpen probably would be the easiest way.”
What does he have to do?
“Work on making better pitches, that’s all,” Lou said. “His command needs to improve. That’s probably the biggest (thing). Go down there and pitch out of the bullpen in the late innings to get him more prepared for this here.”
We’ll have more from pitching coach Larry Rothschild online and in the paper.
Against Lilly, Ryan Braun is 7-for-16 with 2 homers. Prince Fielder is 8-for-18 with a homer. Hart is 5-for-18 with a homer. Against Davis, Byrd is 8-for-21. Baker has a pair of homers. Nady is 7-for-21 with 2 homers.
The Cubs need Ramirez to pick it up. He’s 0-for-16 on the road trip. Theriot has a three-game hitting streak as does D-Lee, but he’s only 3-for-18 on the trip.
CASTRO WATCH: Last night, Starlin Castro extended his hitting streak to 10 games by going 3-for-4 with a double, a triple, 3 runs and 3 RBI for Class AA Tennessee. He’s hitting .489 (22-for-45) during the streak. For the season, his line is .426/.455/.705 for an OPS of 1.159. He has 6 doubles, 4 triples, 1 homer and 15 RBI.
Andrew Cashner pitches for Tennessee tonight.