Persistent soreness puts Cubs lefty Tsuyoshi Wada’s next start in doubt

SHARE Persistent soreness puts Cubs lefty Tsuyoshi Wada’s next start in doubt

Tsuyoshi Wada’s shoulder injury might be more than routine cramping, and the Cubs are looking into alternatives for Saturday’s scheduled start in St. Louis if the left-hander isn’t able to make the start.

That could mean a Cubs debut for Class AAA right-hander Don Roach (7-1, 2.29 for Iowa) or one of the two former rotation guys in the bullpen: lefty Travis Wood or right-hander Edwin Jackson.

“There’s still some soreness right there,” Cubs manager Joe Maddon said. “We’re not prepared yet to say yes or no on the next start. We’re going to wait probably just a little while longer to evaluate all that. From what I was told it was better, but we want to be very certain about that.”

Wada, a Tommy John surgery “graduate” who opened the season on the disabled list with a groin injury, left Monday’s start in the third inning because of what was believed to be cramping in the shoulder.

He played catch Tuesday and reported normal day-after soreness. He briefly played long toss again Wednesday.

Maddon and other team officials said Wood and Jackson are in the conversations for a possible start in Wada’s place, although Maddon on Tuesday talked up Wood’s value in his bullpen role and downplayed Jackson’s readiness to provide enough innings to be considered rotation depth.

Roach, 25, was acquired in November off waivers from San Diego. He debuted with the Padres last year, making 15 relief appearances and one start (three innings). He last pitched for Iowa on Saturday.

Right-hander Jacob Turner, who briefly was in the Cubs’ starting rotation mix before an elbow injury derailed his spring training, had the elbow “flare up” during his minor-league rehab stint at AA Tennessee, team president Theo Epstein said.

He hasn’t pitched in 10 days.

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