4/1 Lilly preps for next spring start

If you’re still in Mesa on Easter Sunday, you can watch Ted Lilly pitch at Fitch Park. The lefty will make his next start at 7 a.m. CT (9 a.m. Arizona time). It will be his third start and he was expected to throw about 60 pitches.

“Now it’s just a matter of getting my pitch count up and stamina,” he said Thursday, “to make sure I can get through longer innings and be prepared so when I come back at some point, maybe not my first start or two, be able to throw 100 plus pitches and feel good about it.”

Counting Sunday, Lilly has three starts before he will be cleared to join the Cubs rotation. That would put him back with the big league team about the third week of April.

He will not be in Atlanta where the Cubs open the regular season on Monday.

“This is definitely not the way I’d like to draw it up,” said Lilly, who could only watch as his teammates packed their gear bags at HoHoKam Park. “All things being considered, just the fact that I’m healthy at this point and throwing the ball without any pain, I consider myself pretty fortunate. I’m definitely not going to complain about anything. I’m lucky as it is.”

— Carrie Muskat

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