Updated: September 24, 2012 6:25AM
MESA, Ariz. — If pitchers Randy Wells and Carlos Silva were hoping their fortunes in the starting rotation would be announced sooner than later, a reality check came Monday.
Cubs manager Mike Quade said he intends to stretch the calendar as long as he can before announcing not only who will fill the two vacancies in the rotation, but also who will fill out the bullpen.
“No, it doesn’t become necessary until the calendar says it’s necessary given the way you’re structuring things,’’ Quade said after a 14-13 victory over the Los Angeles Angels.
“It’s not imminent as far as I’m concerned. We get through Vegas, get through the off day, get through, say, the 20th of March, then we thinned the herd a little bit. Now you get real serious as far as looking at that.’’
There’s a reason behind prolonging those decisions. Quade wants to keep camp as competitive as possible for as long as possible.
“You keep guys pitching,’’ he said. “We don’t know what’s going to happen. I mean, God forbid, we have three guys [go down] . . . I kind of hope for the best but anticipate the worst, so we need to keep everyone pitching and see how this plays out. As long as time allows you to stretch guys out and keep them competing, the better.’’
Quade isn’t concerned with easing his players’ minds.
“We’ve got a lot of decisions to make — the back two [starters] and some bullpen stuff — so there is a lot of reason for people to come out and get in some work.’’
A lot to learn
Growing pains are to be expected in camp, and the coaching staff is not immune. Entering his first full season as third-base coach, Ivan DeJesus got Marlon Byrd nailed at the plate in the fourth inning Monday, leading to some pull-no-punches comments from Quade.
“It’s spring training for everyone,’’ Quade said. “I think [DeJesus] probably pulled the trigger a little bit soon. I’ve done that plenty of times myself. In a different scoring situation, maybe you take a shot — but we were down.
“Ivan hasn’t done a lot of this, and we’ll sit down and talk and see what he was thinking, in a bunch of situations. It’s a real good situation for me because I can tell him firsthand when I see something, and I know the difficult situations.
“These things all need to get worked out. Ivan’s got a lot of work to do as far as just getting comfortable over there. I know I did. It willbe fine.”