LOS ANGELES -- Cubs pitchers Andrew Cashner and Randy Wells both threw off the mound in the bullpen on Monday for the first time since going on the disabled list and are making good progress.
Cashner, sidelined since April 6 with a strained right rotator cuff, threw 20 pitches, while Wells, out since April 5 with a strained right forearm, threw 15.
"I threw really well today and had a lot better command than I thought I would," Cashner said. "I threw great, everything's good and threw fastball, changeup and I'm looking forward to getting back up there.
"For me, it's just getting back in the groove of things and getting back on the mound. I've been stretching it out and it's been feeling good."
The next step will be another bullpen session on Wednesday and then Cashner will report to Arizona to face hitters at extended spring training.
Because of off-days, the Cubs don't need a fifth starter after Monday until May 14. One option could be veteran Doug Davis, who signed a Minor League contract with the team. He was scheduled to start Thursday for Class A Daytona in Tampa. Todd Wellemeyer, bothered this spring by a sore right hip, could pitch Thursday for Triple-A Iowa.
Cubs voice Brenly recalls emotions from '01
LOS ANGELES -- The news of Osama bin Laden's death was well received by Cubs television analyst Bob Brenly on Monday.
Brenly, who was Arizona's manager in 2001, recalls scrambling to figure out how to handle the interruption in the baseball season after the attack on Sept. 11, 2001.
Playing in the 2001 World Series was an emotional event Brenly will never forget.
"I've said it many times, I've never been prouder to be a part of Major League Baseball than I was then," Brenly said. "We get all carried away and it consumes our lives on a daily basis, but the reality is we're just a distraction, we're entertainment and it was never more needed than it was that year. For the Series to go the way it did, the Yankees winning those three at Yankee Stadium, I think everything played out as good as could be expected under those circumstances."
Brenly was proud of how his D-backs team handled the situation, too.
"We had all those veteran players and they all knew how to handle themselves and they all knew the right things to say and do," he said. "We took a bus out to ground zero when we were in New York and it was strictly optional and I think 20 of the 25 guys went. We put on hard hats and talked to rescue workers. Rescue workers were getting their cellphones out and calling their kids -- 'Here's Randy Johnson, here's Curt Schilling, here's Luis Gonzalez.' For the couple hours we were down there, hopefully it gave them a little breather from what they were going through."
Brenly's son, Michael, was 14 at the time and the D-backs' bat boy. While the players were signing autographs for the rescue workers, Michael asked his dad if he had an extra Sharpie pen.
"He took off his hard hat and had some of the firemen sign his helmet," Brenly said of his son. "He still has it hanging in his room at home. I'm pretty proud of that."
Cubs manager Mike Quade was Oakland's first-base coach in 2001 and the Athletics played the Yankees in the first series in Yankee Stadium after the attacks on 9/11.
"It was surreal," Quade said. "I made a point to stop by the mayor's box to thank [Rudy] Giuliani for all he did. There's no crying in baseball, but that was one tough day to come back. It hurt. The people who were most closely involved in keeping us together as a country did a heck of a job."
Sore shoulder keeps Baker out of Cubs' lineup
LOS ANGELES -- Cubs infielder Jeff Baker was not available Monday because of a sore left shoulder he aggravated on the last play of Sunday's game.
It's not clear how Baker injured his shoulder, but he was limited to pinch-hitting duties on Sunday. Baker grounded into a double play to end the game against the D-backs and collided with first baseman Juan Miranda.
Cubs manager Mike Quade wanted Baker in the lineup Monday and Tuesday against the Dodgers because they were starting lefties Clayton Kershaw and Ted Lilly. Baker is batting .480 against left-handers.
"I'll be real careful with him the next couple days," Quade said.
Carrie Muskat is a reporter for MLB.com. She writes a blog, Muskat Ramblings, and you can follow her on Twitter @CarrieMuskat. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.