Kyuji Fujikawa headed back to disabled list with forearm strain

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Kyuji Fujikawa already had one stint on the disabled list this season due to a right forearm strain, but now he’s facing another extended absence with what’s believed to be the same injury.

Fujikawa was placed on the 15-day disabled list today after he was forced to leave Sunday’s outing against the Reds. Paul Sullivan of the Chicago Tribune reports that the Japanese right-hander is scheduled to undergo an MRI tomorrow and the Cubs are “cautiously optimistic” that he’s dealing with the same injury. However, it’s worth noting that Fujikawa told Japanese media yesterday that he felt a “snap” in his elbow while pitching to Joey Votto.

Fujikawa, 32, has compiled a 5.25 ERA, two saves and a 14/2 K/BB ratio over his first 12 innings in the big leagues. The Cubs brought him on board over the winter with a two-year, $9.5 million contract.

Masahiro Tanaka to throw off a mound this weekend

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Earlier this month Yankees starter Masahiro Tanaka strained both of his hamstrings while running the bases in an interleague game against the Mets and was sent to the 10-day DL. Today it was announced that the beginning of the end of most DL stints for pitchers — throwing off of a mound — is in Tanaka’s immediate future.

Tanaka is scheduled to throw off a mound Sunday, which will be his first real (well, fake real) pitching action since the June 9th injury. Assuming the session goes well, Tanaka is expected to return to the Yankees’ starting rotation sometime in early-to-mid July. With the All-Star break coming the week of July 16, it would not be hard to imagine the Yankees giving him a few extra days to get right.

Tanaka is 7-2 with a 4.58 ERA and a K/BB ratio of 73/19 in 72.2 innings on the season.