Cubs

Chatwood set back, return this season unlikely

Cubs

Cubs right-hander Tyler Chatwood (right forearm strain) recently experienced a setback in his rehab that seems to rule him out for the rest of the regular season, if not the playoffs.

“I’m not saying there’s not a scenario where we’re in the World Series and he’s in the bullpen,” Cubs manager David Ross said. “Things can change from now until then, but right now he’s on the shelf for a little bit.”

Chatwood, who the Cubs placed on the injured list two weeks ago, had progressed to a “touch-and-feel” bullpen session late last week.

“I think he was trying to push himself to be back as soon as he possibly could,” Ross said, “with knowing the time frame of which the season is squeezed into and where he was at, feeling good, and then trying to get that next gear. It just wasn’t there.”

The Cubs plan to reassess Chatwood’s status later this week, Ross said.

Chatwood claimed the fifth spot in the Cubs rotation back in Spring Training. Then, a thumb injury to José Quintana and a cautious approach to Jon Lester’s throwing program during the MLB shutdown bumped Chatwood up to the No. 3 slot during opening week.

But after a strong pair of starts early in the season, Chatwood’s year has been plagued by injuries. He also spent a week and a half on the injured list in August with a mid-back strain.

The Cubs received more positive news on Quintana’s progress this week. Quintana (left lat inflammation), who also went on the IL about two weeks ago, threw a bullpen on Monday.

 

“It went really well,” Ross said, “really good feedback.”

Quintana is scheduled for a light bullpen session Wednesday and a simulated game later in the week, according to Ross. He may be ready to return as a reliever later in the season.

When Quintana worked back from his thumb injury earlier in the year, the left-hander made two relief appearances, each three innings apiece. His next outing was expected to be a start, but instead he went back on the IL.

Quintana’s role after returning from injury this time will depend on how quickly he can build up his pitch count and where the Cubs lack depth.

Since Quintana’s last appearance, the Cubs have reinforced their bullpen by acquiring two lefties at the trade deadline: Josh Osich and Andrew Chafin.

Chafin, who is on the 10-day IL with a sprained finger on his left hand, is scheduled to throw a sim game on Wednesday, according to Ross.

“We’re running in on the back of the season and some time where obviously games are going to matter, performance," Ross said, "and then also postseason thoughts are starting to get in there.”

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