Guzman's Rehab Slowed

Cubs pitching prospect turned brief big league starter/reliever Angel Guzman has not faced hitters in a live game since July 7 when he tossed one shutout inning in the Arizona Rookie League.

Guzman was 0-1 with a 3.56 ERA in 12 games with Chicago before going on the disabled list with a strained right elbow in June. He struck out 26 and walked nine in 30 1/3 innings, making three starts with the team.

Since then, Guzman has been in Mesa, Ariz., at the Cubs Spring Training and rehab facilities. To date, his only appearance in a live game in Arizona was against San Francisco Giants minor league hitters three weeks ago.

"He's still a little bit tender and we're trying to take the proper measures," Cubs Director of Player Development Oneri Fleita said of Guzman.

The 25-year-old Guzman is now in his eighth season with the Cubs. Signed as a minor league free agent in 1999, the right-hander was once the club's top pitching prospect before he was slowed by injuries.

Guzman underwent shoulder surgery midway through the 2003 season when his prospect status peaked, then made only a handful of appearances over the next two years. He made his big league debut in 2006.

The Cubs feel Guzman still has a bright future ahead of him – it may not be with them – in spite of another injury plagued year.

"We still think (he does)," Fleita said. "When he's ready, he'll tell us."

Fleita also did not put a timetable on when Guzman, who logged 131 2/3 innings a year ago, might return this season, if at all.

"At this point, his rehab has just gone a little slower than we'd hoped. But he's down there working hard," Fleita said.

"I'm sure that in due time, we'll get him out of Arizona."

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