The Cubs may be getting some reinforcements soon...even after Kyle Schwarber heads back to the minor leagues.
Several players from the Cubs' Opening Day roster are on the mend, including Jorge Soler, who is out of his walking boot and with the team on their current road trip.
Soler, nursing an ankle injury, took batting practice before Friday's game against the Twins in Minnesota. Soler was sidelined June 1 after stepping on the first base bag awkwardly in Miami.
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Mike Olt began a rehab assignment Friday night in Double-A Tennessee. Olt broke his wrist after he was hit with a pitch and has been out since the second week of the season.
With Kris Bryant now up in the big leagues and looking like he belongs, there won't be much playing time at third base to be had for Olt. So will he see time at other positions as he rehabs his injury?
Cubs manager Joe Maddon admitted he's not sure what the plan is for Olt at this time, though the 26-year-old slugger does have an option left and can remain in the minor leagues without having to pass through waivers first.
"I have not had that discussion. I don't know what the gameplan is," Maddon said before Friday's game in Minnesota. "That's not an edict for me. Of course, you'd like to see him play more than one position, but I don't know what the exact plan is beyond him healthy."
Hard-throwing reliever Neil Ramirez is also on the road back after shoulder discomfort. He tossed a perfect inning of relief Wednesday with Double-A Tennessee.
"I guess Neil threw the ball well," Maddon said. "That's good. ... We got a bunch of good little things going on right now."
Ramirez is 1-0 with a 3.00 ERA in five games (three innings) for the Cubs this season, but hasn't pitched with the team in more than two months (his last appearance was April 15).
He had a 1.44 ERA and 1.05 WHIP in 50 games last season while working his way into a late-inning role during his first big-league season.
On top of all that, right-hander Jacob Turner is also on the mend, making two rehab starts with Double-A Tennessee so far while working back from an elbow injury suffered in spring training.
Turner has given up just two runs in nine innings so far and threw five shutout innings Sunday for the Smokies.
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The Cubs traded for Turner last year when the Marlins placed him on waivers and he struggled to the tune of a 6.49 ERA in eight games (six starts) down the stretch in Chicago.
But he's still only 24 and was a former Top 20 prospect after the Detroit Tigers took him ninth overall in the 2009 Draft. As the Cubs try to solidify the back end of their rotation, maybe Turner could find a way into the Cubs' plans once again.