Doing the math, it's hard to envision Cubs starting pitcher Yu Darvish returning to the active list before the all-star break.
"I don't know," manager Joe Maddon said Sunday. "He's feeling better. He's going to throw again (Monday) here. We're just going to keep building off of it. I think we'll know more by the end of this coming week exactly what we think regarding hopefully being able to lay out a plan of getting him back. But we're not at that point."
Darvish has been on the 10-day disabled list, effective May 23, with right-triceps tendinitis. He was on the DL in early may with a flu-like illness. He has been playing catch off flat ground recently but has yet to throw from a mound. He will have to do that at least a couple of times, and then the Cubs will send him out on a minor-league rehab stint to get him stretched out.
The Cubs signed Darvish to a six-year, $126 million contract on the eve of spring training. So far, Darvish has been a huge disappointment, going 1-3 with a 4.95 ERA in 8 starts.
It's a first-half showdown:
The Cubs open a three-game series Monday night at Miller Park against the Milwaukee Brewers. It's a late first-half showdown between the two top teams in the National League Central.
Joe Maddon didn't want to get too far ahead of things.
"We've done decently against them this year so far," said Joe Maddon, whose team is 7-1 against Milwaukee. "The significance is Monday's game. We have to take care of Sunday first. I think the best way to approach when you're playing really good teams within your division is to not get too farsighted.
This is the micro time, man. It's about Monday. Then it will be about Tuesday. Then it will be about Wednesday. Always the trap is to get caught in the macro moment. Don't do it. Just don't do it."
Soccer stars surprised with honor:
The Cubs had relief pitcher Luke Farrell surprise a couple of high school soccer stars Sunday.
St. Edward's (Elgin) AJ Franklin and Wheaton Warrenville South's Paige Miller received 2017-18 PepsiCo Showdown MVP belts. The two were identified as the top high school boys and girls soccer players in the 16th Annual PepsiCo Showdown, the largest high school soccer tournament in the U.S.
Franklin and Miller were selected out of nearly 200 high schools and 5,000 players for the honor. Franklin will play at Marquette in the fall, while Miller has committed to Northwestern.
Sunday with Sister Jean:
Sister Jean was back at Wrigley Field. Sister Jean Dolores Schmidt, chaplain for Loyola University Chicago men's basketball team, attended mass with Wrigley Field employees in the stands and then visited with Joe Maddon in his office. Sister Jean, 98, gained national fame during Loyola's run to the Final Four in March.
"I gave her one of our paintings, and I signed it for her," Maddon said. "Quite a sweetheart."
Last week, Maddon had a visit from football Hall of Famer Joe Namath.