Roach to start for #Cubs Saturday

Donn Roach will make his first big league start since May 18, 2014, when he takes the mound Saturday for the Cubs in place of lefty Tsuyoshi Wada, who is still bothered by some cramping in his left shoulder. Roach, 25, who the Cubs claimed off waivers in November from the Padres, was 7-1 with a 2.29 ERA in 14 starts at Triple-A Iowa. He appeared in 16 big league games last year with San Diego, compiling a 4.75 ERA.

There are no “alarms going off” regarding Wada’s shoulder, manager Joe Maddon said. The lefty had to leave his last start after two innings because of the cramping. He has not undergone an MRI. The Cubs say there’s nothing structurally wrong. Wada did play catch on Friday at Busch Stadium.

“The thing about Wada is that we’re still not 100 percent sure where that is right now — I don’t know how bad he is,” Maddon said. “He’s doing better. It’s not awful. We’re just concerned that it’s not progressing to the point where we have a definite answer.”

A corresponding roster move will be made Saturday, and it would most likely be a pitcher, Maddon said.

“We really can’t lose any more bench players right now,” Maddon said.

Roach will have a tough assignment, having to face the Cardinals, who boast the best record in baseball.

“That’s why I play the game — it’s fun,” Roach said.

— Carrie Muskat

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