Cubs move to shore up bullpen
They weren't eye-popping moves, but the Cubs did some back-of-the-roster maneuvering Monday.
To get some reinforcement for a beleaguered bullpen, they recalled right-hander Rafael Dolis from Class AAA Iowa. They also selected the contract of former White Sox outfielder Ryan Sweeney from Iowa.
Heading out was reliever Kameron Loe, who was designated for assignment, and outfielder Dave Sappelt, who was optioned to Iowa. The Cubs say they hope Loe clears waivers and heads outright to Iowa to work on his sinker.
"Obviously, our bullpen is a little beat up right now," said Cubs manager Dale Sveum. "We needed an arm. Sweeney is a guy we've been wanting to get up here anyway to balance out the bench and flexibility when we give Sori (Alfonso Soriano) days off and things like that. He's another guy on the bench that can hit and hit the ball out of the ballpark."
Sweeney, 28, had a line of .337/.396/.627 with 6 homers and 16 RBI at Iowa. He bats left-handed.
"Just get in there when I can get in there," he said. "In the National League, it's a little bit different, pinch hitting and stuff like that. There's more opportunities to get into the game."
Sweeney played for the White Sox in 2006-07. He also has played for Oakland and Boston, who released him at the end of spring training this year.
Pitcher Matt Garza had a good outing Monday in his rehab start at Iowa. He worked 3 innings, giving up 4 hits and 1 run while walking none and striking out three. He threw 54 pitches.
"I felt great," he told the Des Moines Register. "Any time you can walk off healthy in a rehab start and you have a pitch count going, it's always a success."
Garza has made 2 rehab starts, and he's likely to get 2 more as he comes back from a left-lat-muscle injury.
Stewart takes his time:
Third baseman Ian Stewart was optioned to Iowa on Friday after his injury rehab time ran out, but he did not play over the weekend as he is taking the full 72 hours players have to report for option assignments. Stewart injured his left quad early in spring training.
"Of course we're disappointed," said Cubs general manager Jed Hoyer. "Last year, we made a trade for him, and he had a lot of injuries he was dealing with. This year, we never even had him. The first swing of the first game of the intrasquad scrimmage. That's as early in the season as you can get. He hasn't really had a chance to help us, and obviously, he's struggled down at Iowa. There's certainly talent there. He has left-handed power. He's a good defender. Yeah, it's disappointing he hasn't been able to help us."
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