Cubs manager Dale Sveum said everything went well with Ryan Dempster on Saturday, and the injured starter will throw off a mound Monday as he works his way back from a strained right lat muscle.
Chris Volstad will start Tuesday's game in Atlanta, Sveum also announced. The right-hander acquired from Miami for Carlos Zambrano in the offseason hasn't pitched in the majors since May 17 and posted a 7.46 ERA in eight starts with the Cubs. But Volstad has pitched better as of late in the minors, and calling him up made the most sense for the Cubs.
"His last outing and even the outing before were pretty positive," Sveum said. "It's logical, it's his day, and he's done a good job the last couple outings."
Volstad struck out seven without allowing a walk or home run in seven innings against Round Rock, Houston's Triple-A affiliate, on June 28. In eight Triple-A starts with Iowa, Volstad has a 4.44 ERA, but his strikeout and walk numbers have improved from the ones he put up with the Cubs.
It's another chance for Volstad to prove himself to the Cubs, and his manager has something targeted for him to succeed.
"It's just mainly getting through an inning, when a little trouble comes up is what he had trouble with," Sveum said. "He had as many shutout inning as anybody, he just couldn't solidify those big innings with one run. It's always multiple-run innings.
"The way he threw the ball the other day, his ball's really sinking and he's getting a lot of quick ground balls and efficiency. Hopefully we can see the same thing."
The news wasn't as good for Ian Stewart, who hasn't seen any improvement in his sore left wrist. Both Sveum and general manager Jed Hoyer hinted that the third baseman may need to go under the knife.
"It's a strong likelihood, is a fair way to characterize it," Hoyer said of Stewart having surgery. "He may be able to avoid it, but to this point we've tried to exhaust every option to avoid it and it may well end up with surgery. It's been frustrating for Ian and it's been frustrating for us."
Stewart has been on the disabled list since June 13 and is hitting .201.292.335 with five home runs this season.