09/22/10 8:31 PM ET
Soto feels good after shoulder cleanup
By Carrie Muskat / MLB.com
"They didn't go in and repair anything and said every ligament and muscle looks great, and I'm really happy for that," Soto said.
The Cubs medical staff was pleased with the Cubs catcher's progress.
"They were really surprised today," Soto said, smiling. "I could move it all around -- it was pretty good today."
He bounced back from a down season in '09 to hit .280 this year with 17 home runs, 19 doubles and 53 RBIs. Soto was expected to begin baseball activities by Jan. 1.
"No doubt I'll be 100 percent by Spring Training and way before that, too," Soto said. "Our goal is to get it 100 percent as early as possible. I'm going to try to get ready as soon as possible so it's not a big deal."
The pain in his shoulder flared up during the Cubs' Aug. 2-4 series against Milwaukee. The Cubs medical staff said the problem could have been caused by an earlier hit on his shoulder when he was younger. The shoulder didn't bother him when he was throwing but when he was hitting.
Colvin heads home after release from hospital
CHICAGO -- Tyler Colvin was released from a Miami hospital Wednesday and headed to South Carolina, and Cubs manager Mike Quade said he hopes to see the rookie outfielder before the season ends.
Colvin has been hospitalized since he was struck in the chest Sunday by a broken bat. He was not able to fly, and his grandfather, Jerry Colvin, drove the outfielder home.
"I'd love to see him again before the season is over," Quade said Wednesday.
Cubs athletic trainer Mark O'Neal has been in touch with Colvin, as have several of his teammates. Catcher Welington Castillo called Colvin on Monday to apologize. It was Castillo's broken maple bat that hit Colvin.
"I feel really bad," Castillo said Tuesday. "I hope he's doing good and gets out of there real soon. I talked to him and he sounds real good. I said, 'I'm sorry.'"
Castillo said he has always used maple bats because the wood is harder and more durable but has never had one break and hit a player.
"You can't worry about it," he said. "You just have to keep playing."
Zambrano slated to face Padres in next start
CHICAGO -- Carlos Zambrano wanted to pitch Sunday against the Cardinals in the Cubs' home finale but instead will open the team's series Monday in San Diego.
The Cubs now have a six-man rotation, which has led to Zambrano's confusion over when his next start was. Tom Gorzelanny, sidelined since Sept. 1 after being hit by a line drive on his left hand, is starting Friday. Cubs manager Mike Quade clarified the order Wednesday.
"I don't know why we're having trouble figuring out these nine or 10 pitchers we've got," Quade said jokingly. "I have no doubt Z would love to pitch against St. Louis. I'd love to pitch against St. Louis. We'll run he and [Ryan] Dempster and that crew against San Diego."
Zambrano is 2-0 with a 2.03 ERA in four games (two starts) against the Cardinals this year and is 12-6 in his career. He beat St. Louis on Sept. 15, giving up one earned run on four hits over six innings.
Quade has kept the veteran pitchers in line to face the contending teams, like the Giants and Padres. Zambrano, Randy Wells and Dempster faced San Francisco this week and will open the four-game series in San Diego, which starts Monday.
Rookie Casey Coleman will start Saturday and Jeff Samardzija will go Sunday against the Cardinals.
With catcher Geovany Soto sidelined after undergoing arthroscopic shoulder surgery, Koyie Hill will be behind the plate for most of the remaining games, Quade said. Rookie Welington Castillo was expected to start when one of the youngsters like Coleman or Samardzija pitch.
Ricketts examining spring-complex options
CHICAGO -- Cubs chairman Tom Ricketts was in Mesa, Ariz., on Wednesday to determine whether a proposed site there can handle both a new Spring Training complex and a water park.
Speaking at a Mesa Rotary event, Ricketts said he didn't know how much land the Waveyard Park needed. The water park was originally to have filled the 125-acre site at the intersection of highways 101 and 202.
Mesa city manager Chris Brady said the city has dropped its original requirement that the water park developer include a resort and 200,000 square feet of stores and restaurants. Building only the water park will require 20-25 acres, Brady said. The Cubs will need about 100 acres.
The Cubs are campaigning for support of Proposition 420, which Mesa voters will consider Nov. 2. The measure allows the city to spend more than $1.5 million on a sports facility.
A stadium will cost $84 million, and the Ricketts family has said it will invest additional money on a privately funded entertainment complex. The team will focus initially on the baseball components of the development and then start working on the entertainment portion, Ricketts said.
The Cubs have outgrown their existing facility at HoHoKam Stadium and Fitch Park. Ricketts said a new complex would draw more fans and tax dollars to Mesa. He said he hopes the new "Wrigleyville West" will capture the atmosphere of Chicago's Wrigley Field.
"Everyone knows that it's a lot more than just going to a baseball game," Ricketts said. "Wrigley is a special place, it's a magical place. It's something that you just can't describe because it has that special feel. We want to get some of that feel in our Spring Training. We want to get some of that destination kind of feel to our Mesa facility."
Carrie Muskat is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.