Cubs’ Garza throws 2 2-3 innings in rehab start
PEARL, Miss. (AP) — Chicago Cubs pitcher Matt Garza pitched 2 2-3 innings in his first rehabilitation start, giving up one run, one hit and two walks for Double-A Tennessee against Mississippi.
The 29-year-old right-hander threw 42 pitches, three short of his limit, on a soggy afternoon after a 1½-hour rain delay.
Garza cruised through the first inning, needing just seven pitches to get three outs. In the second, he walked the first two batters before giving up a run-scoring single to Braeden Schlehuber.
He retired the first two batters of the third inning before being pulled for a new pitcher. His fastball ranged from 89 to 92 miles per hour for most of the outing and he threw 17 balls and 25 strikes.
Garza didn’t talk with the media after the game. Tennessee pitching coach Jeff Fassero said Garza had to take a flight back to Chicago for a workout, but was pleased with his outing, especially considering the wet field didn’t make for ideal conditions.
“He didn’t have great command, but he hasn’t been on the mound for a while,” Fassero said. “He was going mostly with his fastball and change-up with a few sliders mixed in. It wasn’t bad. If you take away the walks he was good. As long as he comes out without too much soreness, it was a good day.”
Garza last pitched for the Cubs on July 21, missing the rest of the season with an elbow injury.
He came to spring training healthy but stopped pitching in mid-February after pulling a muscle in his back while throwing batting practice. His first rehab assignment was scheduled for last week, but that was delayed when he felt some soreness in his arm.
Fassero said Garza would likely have “two or three” more outings in the minor leagues before rejoining the Cubs later this month.
Garza has pitched seven seasons in the big leagues for the Minnesota Twins, Tampa Bay Rays and Cubs. He has a 57-61 career record.
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