Matt Szczur was placed on the 15-day disabled list Tuesday because of a mild right hamstring strain and Ryan Kalish called up from Triple-A Iowa. Szczur was injured during a double steal attempt Monday night in the fifth inning. He was on third base when David Ross, who was on first, broke for second. Szczur headed home, then stopped as the throw came in and started again, which is when he injured the hamstring. He told the media in Pittsburgh that he didn’t think the injury was too severe. He underwent an MRI on Tuesday. Christian Villanueva was transferred to the 60-day DL to make room on the 40-man roster for Kalish.
Also, Jason Heyward was not in the Cubs’ lineup Tuesday for the second straight game, nursing a sore wrist.
— Carrie Muskat
Willson Contreras hit his first home run of the season in Iowa’s 5-1 loss to Nashville. Pierce Johnson took the loss, giving up four runs over three innings. Arismendy Alcantara had two hits, and has hit safely in 13 of 19 games so far. Felix Pena struck out four over two scoreless innings in relief.
Tennessee split a doubleheader at Biloxi, losing 3-2 in the first game and winning the second, 4-1, in extra innings. Tyler Skulina started the first game and gave up zero earned runs over five innings. Mark Zagunis hit a game-winning home run in the eighth of the second game and Kelly Dugan added a pinch-hit, two-run homer. Victor Caratini had two hits in the second game. Corey Black picked up his second save in Game 2.
Myrtle Beach beat Winston-Salem, 3-2, in 11 innings. Yasiel Balaguert hit his third home run, a two-run shot in the first. He has three multi-RBI games in his last six games. Jake Stinnett started and gave up one run — unearned — over five innings.
Carson Sands gave up three hits over six scoreless innings in South Bend’s 3-0 win over Wisconsin. Sands struck out four. Eloy Jimenez had two hits, including a double, and a stolen base. Jesse Hodges had two hits and on RBI.
Jake Arrieta takes the mound Tuesday night for the Cubs in Game 2 of their series against the Pirates. No Jason Heyward for the second straight day. He’s dealing with a sore wrist, which first bothered him in Arizona in early April. Here’s Tuesday’s lineup:
On Monday, Arrieta was named NL Pitcher of the Month for April after going 5-0 with a 1.00 ERA. He’s the first Cubs pitcher to win each of his first five starts in a season since Greg Maddux started 5-0 in 2006.
The weather interfered with all four Cubs affiliates games.
Drew Rucinski gave up four runs over five innings in Iowa’s 4-3 loss to Colorado Springs in the first game of a doubleheader. The second game was postponed because of inclement weather. John Andreoli had two hits, one RBI and a stolen base. Willson Contreras hit two doubles.
Tennessee’s game at Biloxi was postponed because of rain. The game was to be made up Monday night as part of a doubleheader.
Myrtle Beach’s game against Salem was postponed because of bad weather, and was to be made up as part of a doubleheader in early June.
South Bend’s game at Cedar Rapids was cancelled because of rain. The South Bend Cubs return home Monday against Wisconsin.
Kris Bryant tested his right ankle early Sunday, and was pronounced good to go in the Cubs’ series finale against the Braves. Bryant suffered a mild ankle sprain last Thursday while running the bases. He admitted he didn’t tape his ankle prior to the game, something he normally does.
“The baseball gods are telling me to continue to tape my ankle,” Bryant said.
He started in left field Sunday, mainly because manager Joe Maddon wanted to get Tommy La Stella into the game.
How did the injury happen?
“I had a really bad angle going into second, so I tried to make up for it coming around second and cut the corner a little too tight and the ankle went the other way,” he said. “It wasn’t terrible. I’ve dealt with a lot worse.”
— Carrie Muskat
Kris Bryant tested his right ankle Sunday morning, and was pronounced ready to go for the Cubs’ series finale against the Braves. Bryant will start in left field. Here’s the lineup:
La Stella 3B
*Bryant admitted his ankle wasn’t taped on Thursday when he hurt his ankle running the bases. He says he’ll get it taped Sunday.
Iowa’s game against Colorado Springs was postponed because of rain. The two teams will try to play a doubleheader Sunday.
Paul Blackburn gave up four hits over five scoreless innings in Tennessee’s 2-1 loss to Biloxi. Mark Zagunis had two hits and Jeimer Candelario, playing first base, had one RBI.
Erick Leal gave up four runs over five innings in Myrtle Beach’s 4-3 loss to Salem. Daniel Lockhart had one RBI.
Adbert Alzolay gave up one run over five innings in South Bend’s 5-1 win over Cedar Rapids. Daniel Spingola extended his hitting streak to 13 games, going 2-for-4. Donnie Dewees had three hits and one RBI. Eddy Martinez drove in two runs.
Last year, the Cubs wore pajamas on the flight back from Los Angeles and players could wear shorts to Miami. The first theme trip this year will be Sunday when they travel to Pittsburgh for a three-game series, and it will be what manager Joe Maddon called “a minimalist zany suit trip.”
“It’s not your typical Hugo Boss thing, not Italian cut by any means,” Maddon said Saturday. “Mine will feature tulips.”
In Spring Training, Maddon was surfing the Internet for ideas, and found a website that featured very unique suits. Some are camouflage colored, some are harlequin patterned. Maddon bought two — the tulip suit and a leopard print.
“Being a Layfayette [College] leopard, I thought it was appropriate,” he said.
Catcher Tim Federowicz, called up from Triple-A Iowa on Friday, may borrow the leopard print suit. He didn’t have time to shop.
There’s more to the theme trip than just wearing the outrageous outfit on the team plane.
“If you’re seen at any time without part of your suit on, it’s a $100 fine — unless you’re working out,” Maddon said. “Like going to the ballpark, in the hotel, going out for Starbucks in the morning, if you’re seen without any part of the suit — [you could wear] the coat, tie, pair of pants, shoes, socks, some method or form of the outfit. If you’re seen without it, it’s a [$100].”
The money will go to the Cubs clubhouse guys.
The reason for the theme?
“Part of it was that we never get dressed up,” Maddon said. “We’re going to get dressed up with this suit. I didn’t want it to be a conventional suit. And I found these. … It was my weird mind working.”
So, heads up Pittsburgh.
— Carrie Muskat
Saturday’s game between the Cubs and Braves at Wrigley Field was postponed because of the forecast for inclement weather throughout the day. No make-up date was set. The two teams do have a mutual off day July 7 when the Braves return to Chicago to play the White Sox. Fans are encouraged to retain their tickets from Saturday’s postponed game to use for the rescheduled contest.
*John Lackey will start Sunday in the series finale against the Braves. The Cubs did tweak the rotation against the Pirates, and will have Jason Hammel, Jake Arrieta and Jon Lester go in the three-game series, which starts Monday. Kyle Hendricks is now pushed back to Thursday and will open the Cubs’ series at Wrigley against the Nationals.
*The postponement does give Kris Bryant an extra day to receive treatment for a sprained right ankle suffered Thursday. Manager Joe Maddon said he would wait and see whether to start Bryant on Sunday. Bryant was on deck to pinch-hit on Friday.
— Carrie Muskat
Saturday’s game between the Cubs and Braves was postponed because of inclement weather. No make up date was announced.
The two teams do have a mutual off day July 7 before Atlanta starts a three-game series against the White Sox at U.S. Cellular Field.
The Cubs and Braves will close this series on Sunday. John Lackey will start for the Cubs and Julio Teheran will go for the Braves.