Hello all! Thanks for taking the time to read my first post.
Good news for the Cubs rotation yesterday, starting pitchers Andrew Cashner and Randy Wells continued their rehab by throw on flat ground. While the organization is unsure when they will return, there have been no major setbacks. Their replacements have struggled from the get-go. James Russell is 0-3 with an 11.17 ERA in his 3 starts, going no further than four innings in any of them. When the back end of the rotation can’t eat innings, the bullpen has a tendency to wear down, which could affect the team in the later months of the season. Casey Coleman was recalled from triple-A Iowa when Cashner went down, and is 1-1 with a 7.43 ERA. Bottom line– you can’t win without good pitching. The Cubs aren’t doing themselves any favors by sending out a middle reliever every fifth day. They just don’t have the offense to support the mediocre performances us fans have grown accustomed to.
We have seen just one start from the 24 year-old Cashner, but a productive one it was. Going into the 6th inning against the Arizona Diamondbacks with just one run allowed, Andrew needed to be removed due to a right shoulder injury. I saw good things throughout his starting debut. He kept walks to a minimum, allowing just one, and the only blemish on the otherwise impressive start was a 3rd inning home run by Ryan Roberts. Only time will tell if he can produce for Chicago in 2011, and even into the future.