Sick and mired: Cubs put struggling Yu Darvish on 10-day DL with flu
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Just when the Cubs found a one-night cure for what has ailed their hitting, their $126 million starting pitcher got sick enough to land on the disabled list.
The Cubs on Monday put struggling right-hander Yu Darvish on the 10-day DL after he was diagnosed with the flu. The team said he had felt ill since the weekend series in St. Louis.
‘‘It’s one of those things where you don’t know if he’s going to start feeling better or not,’’ manager Joe Maddon said. ‘‘I talked to him before the game, and it still wasn’t good. So we’ve got to make up our mind.’’
Darvish (0-3, 6.00 ERA) was scheduled to start Tuesday against the Marlins after the Cubs snapped a five-game losing streak with a 14-2 rout in the series opener.
The DL move is retroactive to May 4, making Darvish eligible to return when the Cubs play the Braves in a makeup game next Monday.
‘‘The 10-day DL permits a lot of stuff,’’ said Maddon, who will add a healthy pitcher Tuesday but said he’s still working on covering Darvish’s start and suggested it might be a bullpen day.
Darvish has been one of the biggest disappointments for the Cubs in the first few weeks of the season, failing to complete five innings in four of his six starts.
Baez leaves with groin injury
Second baseman Javy Baez left the game in the seventh inning because of groin tightness, and his status for the rest of the week is unclear.
He appeared to suffer the injury after fielding a wide throw at second in the fifth and stretching his leg awkwardly behind him to touch the base with his foot. He stayed in the game into the seventh before leaving with the trainer.
‘‘There’s no sense to leave him in the game there,’’ Maddon said.
Baez, who will be examined again before the game Tuesday but isn’t expected to play, hit his 10th home run earlier in the game, a three-run shot that gave him a major-league-leading 32 RBI.
Bats bust out
Until the Cubs broke out in their four-homer rout, they had scored three runs or fewer in 10 of their previous 11 games.
In fact, until Kris Bryant hit a two-run homer in the first, the Cubs hadn’t had a homer with a man on base since April 20. They had hit 13 solo homers since.
Baez added his homer in the third before slumping Ian Happ added a two-run shot in the fourth and three-run blast in the seventh.
Happ hit his first homer right-handed and his second left-handed, becoming the first Cubs player to homer from both sides of the plate in a game since Dioner Navarro in 2013.
It was a big-league first for Happ.
“Then [hitting coach] Chili [Davis] told me he did it 12 times,’’ Happ said. ‘‘I’ve got a long ways to go.’’
Mazzoni up, Farrell down
Because back-to-back extra-inning games in St. Louis taxed the bullpen, the Cubs optioned right-hander Luke Farrell to Class AAA Iowa and recalled right-hander Cory Mazzoni, who pitched a scoreless ninth in relief of Kyle Hendricks (3-2).