Cubs’ Kerry Wood, Reed Johnson are out of service
BY GORDON WITTENMYER firstname.lastname@example.org July 26, 2011 10:52PM
Ryan Braun slides as shortstop Starlin Castro makes the pivot to first on a double play in the third inning. | Scott Boehm~Getty Images
Updated: October 29, 2011 12:37AM
MILWAUKEE — The Cubs opened their 10-game road trip short two players, including setup man Kerry Wood, who remained in Chicago on Tuesday receiving IV fluids because of flu-like symptoms.
Wood, who participated in the six-hour Ron Santo charitable golf tournament Monday, also was unavailable to pitch Sunday because of ‘‘aches and pains,’’ manager Mike Quade said.
Wood showed up Tuesday for the Cubs’ bus ride to Milwaukee but ‘‘was puking his guts out really bad,’’ Quade said. ‘‘We’ll take a look at him [today].’’
Wood’s issues Sunday resulted from pitching the equivalent of four innings while warming up repeatedly in recent days without going into a game, Quade said. He last pitched Wednesday, the final inning of a 9-1 loss to Philadelphia.
It’s unclear when Wood will rejoin the team, much less be available to pitch.
Meanwhile, outfielder Reed Johnson was still iffy with what seemed to be an issue with his chronic back problems. Quade said Johnson, who also sat out Sunday, was ‘‘a little stiff and sore’’ but sidestepped repeated queries about whether it was his back.
‘‘I didn’t ask,’’ Quade said.
Johnson, who was not available to the media before the game, apparently is day-to-day.
With the non-waiver trade deadline four days away and a half-dozen Cubs veterans on the block, Quade knows he could be in full-blown player-development mode in the final stretch of the season.
But, he said, ‘‘I haven’t thought about that. . . . I think we’re trying to develop with the group that we’ve got, and if you wound up with a younger mix, then there would be even more of it.
‘‘No matter what the mix is roster-wise, we’re here to win baseball games.’’
Aramis Ramirez’s first-inning home run was his 232nd as a Cub, breaking a sixth-place tie with Hall of Famer Gabby Hartnett on the club’s all-time list. Ryne Sandberg is fifth at 282.
◆ Ramirez’s blast also was his ninth first-pitch homer of the season, most in the majors.
◆ Wood’s absence doesn’t change any bullpen roles, Quade said, but leaves the Cubs with one fewer late-inning option. Quade still had the use of swingman Rodrigo Lopez for one more day Tuesday before Lopez would be off-limits as he prepares for Saturday’s start in St. Louis.
◆ The last time Tuesday’s Cubs starter, Ryan Dempster, lost to the Brewers was May 9, 2009, in Milwaukee.
◆ Left-hander James Russell hasn’t allowed a run this month in 11 appearances.