05/06/12 10:04 PM ET
DeWitt designated for assignment
Cubs make room for Wood due to Garza's flu
By Carrie Muskat / MLB.com
DeWitt was designated for assignment by the Cubs on Sunday to make room on the 25-man roster for Travis Wood, who started the series finale against the Dodgers. Matt Garza was scheduled to start but had to be scratched because he was sick with the flu that has spread through the Cubs clubhouse.
Wood, acquired from the Reds last December in the Sean Marshall deal, was called up from Triple-A Iowa, where he was 1-3 with a 5.08 ERA in five games.
This is the second time this year the Cubs have designated DeWitt. He also was designated for assignment Feb. 6 to make room on the 40-man when the Cubs claimed infielder Adrian Cardenas off waivers from the Athletics. He rejoined the team Feb. 23 as a non-roster Spring Training invitee after clearing waivers.
In 18 games this year, DeWitt was batting .138 with one double and one RBI.
"Hopefully, he clears waivers and elects to stay with us," Cubs manager Dale Sveum said Sunday. "It's an unfortunate thing, and more than anything, it's because of the flu bug. It cost a guy a job in the big leagues. It was our only chance to do anything."
Garza, 2-1 with a 2.67 ERA in five starts, last pitched April 29 against the Phillies when he struck out 10 and gave up one hit over seven innings in the win. He is scheduled to open the Cubs series on Friday against the Brewers.
Stewart latest Cub to catch flu bug
CHICAGO -- Third baseman Ian Stewart was the latest victim of the flu bug that's been spreading through the Cubs' clubhouse and was available on a limited basis Sunday.
"It's one of those unfortunate things that a lot of teams deal with over the course of the year," Cubs manager Dale Sveum said Sunday. "Hopefully, we get [Stewart] back. It hasn't been a one-day thing with anybody, guys have been completely down and out."
Stewart was called on to pinch-hit in the ninth and singled with one out, eventually scoring the game-tying run. The Cubs beat the Dodgers, 4-3, in 11 innings.
"I asked Stew if he could go in the game, and he said, 'I'm a little dizzy and can't really see straight,'" Sveum said.
With the hit, Stewart upped his averaged to .204. He's hit safely in six of his last nine games and driven in a run in four of his last nine. Joe Mather started the game at third base.
"He doesn't deserve a .200 average," Sveum said of Stewart.
Jeff Baker was feeling better Sunday after also dealing with the flu that players claimed started with pitcher Scott Maine. At least, that was Baker's story. Maine was sidelined for two days last week in Cincinnati, then sent to Triple-A Iowa to make room on the roster for Kerry Wood, who was activated from the disabled list.
How do the Cubs avoid catching whatever is going around?
"As bad as these guys have been, you try to keep them away from the ballpark," Sveum said. "That's hard to do when they need to get treatment and medicine. The best you can do is stay away from them, don't shake hands or let them breathe on you. It's a tough thing that teams go through and we're going through it now."
Campana forced to dodge hungry birds
CHICAGO -- At one point in Sunday's game, Cubs center fielder Tony Campana appeared to be the target of some of the seagulls looking for food scraps.
The birds swooped down during the Cubs' game against the Dodgers, and Campana had to duck.
"There was a fan who threw a piece of pizza at me," Campana said. "I had to kick it away from me so the birds didn't eat me. They were all around me today."
The seagulls enjoy the fans' leftovers in the bleachers, and have discovered that they can find a good meal after day games. Sunday's game started late because of rain, so they arrived while play was still in progress.
"Sometimes I notice them," Campana said. "When the pitches are being thrown, they don't bug me."
He's seen the Alfred Hitchcock movie, "The Birds," right?
"Yeah, I have," Campana said, laughing. "They're all over the place out there. They get close to me, too. They aren't real scared of me. It's all fun."
Rookie Rafael Dolis so far is 2-for-3 in save situations, and 1-for-1 since taking over for Carlos Marmol. He has not walked a batter in his last six outings.
"The last three outs will be the hardest to get, no matter how good of stuff you have," Cubs manager Dale Sveum said Sunday. "You're basically making guys hit the ball and see what happens. The walks will end up killing you in any situation. That's why Mariano Rivera and Trevor Hoffman, they sustained everything for so long because they never walked anybody."
For example, since last June 5, when Marmol blew a lead in St. Louis -- which prompted Carlos Zambrano to declare "we stinks" -- the right-hander has walked 47 and given up 43 hits over 57 2/3 innings. In that same time frame, Rivera has walked six and given up 34 hits over 47 innings.
Chicago's Ian Stewart is one of five National League players to drive in at least 10 runs this season despite hitting under .200. Stewart, scratched Sunday because of the flu, was batting .196.
In his first start for Triple-A Iowa since being sent down Wednesday, Randy Wells gave up three runs on seven hits and two walks over five innings in a 7-3 loss to New Orleans on Saturday night. The I-Cubs gave up three runs in the fifth and four more in the sixth. Anthony Rizzo extended his hitting streak to 12 games, going 1-for-3 with a double.
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.