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posted: 7/5/2011 6:06 PM

Cubs shuffle around 4 pitchers

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Associated Press

WASHINGTON -- The Cubs' pitching carousel continued Tuesday when they made roster moves involving four hurlers and used their 10th different starter this season.

The Cubs purchased the contract of Ramon Ortiz from Triple-A Iowa to start Tuesday night's game against the Washington Nationals. Ortiz last pitched in the majors on May 19, 2010, for the Los Angeles Dodgers.

Ortiz was 6-3 with a 4.26 ERA for Iowa. He was needed because Carlos Zambrano is on the disabled list with a sore back.

Four of Chicago's five starters from the opening day rotation have been on the disabled list this season. The last time the Cubs needed 10 starters before the All-Star break was in 2006.

Ortiz became the second starter in as many days to fill a sudden hole in the rotation. On Monday, Casey Coleman was recalled from Iowa and started against Washington because Ryan Dempster was recovering from an abdominal ailment that had him hospitalized in Chicago over the weekend.

Cubs manager Mike Quade said Dempster is still day-to-day with a stiff lower back but the team is "hoping he can answer the bell" for his next scheduled start Saturday against the Pittsburgh Pirates.

Also Tuesday, the Cubs placed right-handed reliever Marcos Mateo on the 15-day disabled list with a sore elbow. Mateo left in the 10th inning of Monday's game after he apparently injured himself on a ball-four pitch to Jayson Werth.

Mateo was flown to Chicago and had an MRI on Tuesday, but the team doesn't expect to have the results for another day or two.

The Cubs also flip-flopped the move they made Monday, recalling reliever Chris Carpenter from Iowa and optioning Coleman to the Triple-A club.

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