Ryan Dempster hospitalized, scratched from start

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CSNChicago’s Patrick Mooney reports that Ryan Dempster was hospitalized on Saturday and stayed overnight undergoing tests and taking IV fluids.  Although he was released Sunday, he’s been scratched from his next scheduled start.

The Cubs will call up Casey Coleman to take his spot Monday against the Nationals.

Besides fighting a stomach virus, Dempster has also been troubled by soreness in his hip and back.  He’ll lose one start prior to the All-Star break as a result of the maladies, but the plan is for him to return sometime this week, perhaps as soon as Wednesday.

The Nationals have to be pleased by the turn of events.  Coleman has a 7.32 ERA in his eight starts in the majors this season.  The Cubs were already planning on promoting Ramon Ortiz to start in place of the injured Carlos Zambrano on Tuesday.  It will be the season debut for Ortiz, who had a 6.30 ERA in two starts and 14 relief appearances for the Dodgers last season.

Jeff Samardzija to undergo MRI on right shoulder

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Giants starter Jeff Samardzija will undergo an MRI on his ailing right shoulder, according to NBC Sports Bay Area. The right-hander struggled in a minor league game on Wednesday, surrendering a pair of home runs and hitting a batter. Overall this spring, Samardzija has given up 15 runs (13 earned) on 17 hits (six homers) and seven walks with seven strikeouts in 11 innings.

This may mean Samardzija won’t be ready for the start of the regular season. Derek Holland would likely replace Samardzija in the rotation. Holland had been competing for the No. 5 spot in the Giants’ rotation.

Samardzija led the National League in losses last season with 15, also posting a 4.42 ERA with a 205/32 K/BB ratio in a league-high 207 2/3 innings. Since becoming a starter, Samardzija has been able to avoid injury, making 32 or 33 starts in each of the last five seasons.