It sounds like Chipper Jones may soon get his wish.
Jason Heyward will begin a minor league rehab assignment tonight with Triple-A Gwinnett, reports David O’Brien of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. It’s a rather surprising turn of events considering that Heyward just swung off a tee for the first time on Friday.
It’s not clear how long Heyward will spend in the minors, but O’Brien speculates that he could be back as soon as Wednesday or Thursday. It could just be a coincidence, but the Gwinnett Braves have a scheduled off-day on Wednesday. Either way, he’s close.
Heyward has been sidelined since May 22 with right shoulder soreness. The 21-year-old outfielder was batting .214/.317/.407 with seven homers and 14 RBI over his first 161 plate appearances before landing on the disabled list.
Bad news for the Cubs’ Yu Darvish: The right-hander is headed back to the disabled list with right triceps tendinitis, the team announced Saturday. It’s the second such assignment for Darvish this season, but the first time he’s been sidelined with arm issues. Neither the severity of his injury nor a concrete timeframe for his recovery has been revealed yet, but the move is retroactive to May 23 and will allow him to come off the DL by June 2, assuming all goes well.
Prior to the injury, Darvish went 1-3 in eight starts with a 4.95 ERA, 4.7 BB/9 and 11.0 SO/9 through 40 innings. Needless to say, these aren’t the kind of results the Cubs were hoping to see after inking the righty to a six-year, $126 million contract back in February, though the circumstances affecting his performances appear to have largely been out of his control. He missed a start in early May after coming down with the flu and has struggled to pitch beyond the fifth inning in five of his eight starts to date.
The Cubs recalled left-hander Randy Rosario from Triple-A Iowa in a corresponding move. Rosario has yet to amass more than five career innings in the majors, but has impressed at Triple-A so far this year: he maintained an 0.97 ERA, 2.8 BB/9 and 6.1 SO/9 through 19 1/3 innings in 2018. As for Darvish’s next scheduled turn in the rotation, Tyler Chatwood is lined up to take the mound when the Cubs face off against the Giants in the series finale on Sunday. A starter for Monday night’s game has yet to be determined.