Inside Pitch: Cubs

The Sports Xchange provides detailed notes, quotes and more on the Chicago Cubs.

The Cubs have been scuffling and scrambling to find healthy bodies all weekend. No, the injury bug didn't bite them again. This time, it was a flu-like bug, and it has left manager Dale Sveum short in several areas.

Over the weekend, the Cubs were forced to scratch right-hander Matt Garza from starts on Saturday and Sunday, pushing him back to the end of the week.

Infielder Jeff Baker missed two games with the same illness, which claimed third baseman Ian Stewart for the start of Sunday's 4-3 rain-delayed victory over the Los Angeles Dodgers in 11 innings. Stewart had a ninth-inning pinch single, and he scored the game-tying run.

"Today, it's Stewart; he's down-and-out today," Sveum said. "It's just one of those unfortunate things that a lot of teams deal with during the course of the year. It happens to be going through us right now."

The Cubs brought left-handed pitcher Travis Wood up from Class AAA Iowa to start in place of Garza. Utility man Joe Mather, who started Saturday in center field, played third base Sunday.

Baker said he felt "awesome" despite looking pale and wan. In all the shuffling, the Cubs designated infielder Blake DeWitt for assignment to make room for Wood on the roster.


--1B Bryan LaHair extended his streak of reaching base safely to 24 straight games. He had had a big day, going 3-for-4 with a double and a walk. He's the first Cubs first baseman to reach in at least 24 in a row since Derrek Lee had a 30-game run in 2009. For the season, he has a hitting line of .390/.478/.779.

--LHP Travis Wood slogged through three long innings, throwing a total of 71 pitches before settling down against the Dodgers. Wood also had a double and a single as a batter. He wound up with 100 pitches over six innings of three-hit, three-run ball. "I felt good," he said. "My pitches were working. I didn't feel like I was nervous or anything. I was able to get some quick outs toward the end of the game, and we came back and won it."

--IF Blake DeWitt was designated for assignment before the game to make room for LHP Travis Wood. It's not the first time. Over the winter, the Cubs designated DeWitt but invited him to spring training as a non-roster man. He made the club out of spring training. Manager Dale Sveum said he hopes DeWitt clears waivers and can rejoin the organization at Class AAA (Des Moines) Iowa. "It's just kind of an unfortunate thing, more than anything just because of the flu bug, it cost a guy a job in the big leagues," Sveum said. "Our only chance to do anything (with the roster) was him. It's unfortunate that because of the flu bug, it cost somebody his job."

--CF Tony Campana is known more for his small-ball, but he lined a double to right-center in the bottom of the ninth to drive in the tying run. He was 2-for-4, both doubles, and is hitting .325. "I hit that one pretty hard," said Campana, who connected off reliever Javy Guerra. "I figured he was going to throw one right down the middle, and he did. I was able to hit it hard."

--RHP Jeff Samardzija came up as a pinch hitter in the 11th inning to bunt with runners on first and second with nobody out. Samardzija is a good bunter, but Dodgers pitcher Jamey Wright hit him with a pitch to load the bases, setting up a walk-off walk by RF David DeJesus. "It's not like I'm a hero or anything," Samardzija said. "More lucky than good."

BY THE NUMBERS: 2-for-15 and 12 -- The Cubs were 2-for-15 with runners in scoring position Sunday, and they left 12 runners stranded.

QUOTE TO NOTE: "I asked Stew if he could go in the game, and he said, 'I'm a little dizzy and can't really see straight right now.' That's what you deal with as much as anything. They're pretty much good enough to go up there and give you an at-bat. To spend a few innings in the field, they're just not strong enough." -- Manager Dale Sveum, on Ian Stewart, who could not start because of flu-like symptoms but who got a pinch single in the bottom of the ninth and scored the tying run.


--LHP Paul Maholm (sore left knee) left the May 4 game shortly after being hit by a comebacker. He didn't think the injury was serious.

--C Steve Clevenger (right oblique strain) went on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to April 26.

--RHP Marcos Mateo (ulnar neuritis in right arm) went on the 60-day disabled list April 4.

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