The Cubs’ unsuccessful half-season search for reliable starting pitching at the end of their rotation took another sharp turn today when veteran left-hander Doug Davis was given his unconditional release to make room for second baseman Darwin Barney’s activation from the disabled list.
The move comes one day after Davis was knocked around by the lowest-scoring team in the majors during a 13-7 loss to the San Francisco Giants.
Signed as a free agent in early April following successive injuries to Nos. 4-5 starters Randy Wells and Andrew Cashner, Davis went 1-7 with a 6.50 ERA in nine starts for the Cubs.
Six Cubs pitchers who have worked in the fourth and fifth rotation spots this season have combined to go 4-18 with a 6.98 ERA in 31 starts. The team is 8-23 in those games.
That doesn’t count the ``sixth-starter’’ performance of Rodrigo Lopez in a second-game loss to the Giants in Tuesday’s doubleheader. Lopez (0-2) got the loss after going 4 2/3 innings in the 6-3 decision.