The Rundown: Soler Beginning Rehab in AAA Today, Wada Heads to DL, Cubs Have Talked to Mets About LHP Jon Niese

If you, like me, are excited by the news of RHP Neil Ramirez returning to the Cubs, you’re also probably pretty happy about the injury progress of another key Cub. Jorge Soler is beginning his rehab in Triple-A today.

Before last night’s game, Joe Maddon wouldn’t say how many games it would take for Soler to be ready to come back to Chicago, but it doesn’t sound like it’ll be too long.

The Cubs certainly need him back, as the offense has taken a nosedive over the past week. It has been a tough stretch of games, but not all that surprising considering the Cubs had to face the Dodgers and Cardinals.

Hopefully, with the team getting healthier and some lesser competition coming up, things will get better.

Wada to DL

To make room for Neil Ramirez’s long-awaited return to the Cubs, Tsuyoshi Wada was placed on the 15-day disabled list.

Wada left last Monday’s game with a cramped shoulder, but it apparently still isn’t feeling right. Saturday night’s starter, Donn Roach, will move to the bullpen for now.

The Cubs won’t need a fifth starter for a while, so there’s a chance Roach could get the call again. He only lasted 3.1 innings in his first Cubs start.

Other notes

* The Cubs have had talks with the Mets about LHP Jon Niese, according to Ken Rosenthal. Not the most exciting name, but he would probably be an upgrade of the current fifth starter spot. Niese was actually pretty decent the past few years, but has a mediocre 4.12 ERA (4.39 FIP) this season. I’m thinking the Cubs will try to get more of an impact pitcher to bolster the rotation this year — someone like Scott Kazmir, for example.

* First-round pick Ian Happ yesterday hit his third home run for the Eugene Emeralds. Not sure how much longer he’ll stay at that level before being moved up to South Bend.


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