08/20/12 8:59 PM ET
Sveum to evaluate two catchers rest of the way
By Carrie Muskat / MLB.com
"The jury's still out, so to speak," Sveum said Monday. "We have quite a few games left to evaluate both of them and the game calling."
The Cubs opted to trade Geovany Soto to the Rangers in July and go with the two young catchers. Castillo entered Monday's game against the Brewers batting .275, while Clevenger was hitting .222. Castillo has thrown out four of 19 attempted basestealers, while Clevenger has thrown out four of 36.
"We obviously know with Castillo, the bottom line is he's one of the better throwers in the game already," Sveum said. "The other parts of the game [are what] he has to improve on and get better on, as well as swinging the bat. He's got the ability to be a prolific hitting catcher."
Castillo has been bothered by some soreness on the outside of his foot, which might have been caused by new shoes. He was in the lineup on Monday.
Rusin arrives in Milwaukee, set for debut
MILWAUKEE -- Chris Rusin may have had the easiest travel schedule of all the young Cubs starters. The left-hander, who will make his Major League debut on Tuesday against the Brewers, caught an 8 a.m. CT flight Monday from Des Moines, Iowa, to Milwaukee, and headed straight for Miller Park.
"It's a dream come true -- I've dreamed about this as a little kid and it finally happened," said Rusin, who will be officially added to the roster on Tuesday.
The Cubs' fourth-round pick in the 2009 First-Year Player Draft, Rusin was 8-8 with a 4.59 ERA in 24 starts at Triple-A Iowa, striking out 87 over 133 1/3 innings. He got off to a solid start, posting a 2.63 ERA in his first five games, but struggled in June. He's rebounded, and in his last three starts, Rusin has given up four earned runs over 18 2/3 innings.
"I just had to sit down and watch some video and figure some things out, and we did," he said.
His last outing was Wednesday against Tucson, and he threw six scoreless innings, giving up four hits in the win.
"It's no different than pitching in Triple-A," Cubs manager Dale Sveum said. "You still have to make your pitches."
Rusin, 25, will likely be backed up by several of his former Iowa teammates who have already been promoted to the big league team.
"You see people going in and out, and people moving up and down," he said. "It's all about timing, I think. When you get your chance, make the most of it, and that's what I'm going to try to do tomorrow."
Josh Vitters started at third on Monday, and will likely get more playing time than Luis Valbuena in the final weeks of the season as the Cubs continue evaluating the young players on the roster.
"Valbuena got hot and was really swinging the bat, but my priority is to get Vitters quite a few at-bats," Cubs manager Dale Sveum said. "[Vitters] is here for a reason."
Vitters, the Cubs' No. 1 pick in the 2007 First-Year Player Draft, was 3-for-33 (.091) in his first 10 games.
Newly acquired left-handed pitcher Alex Hinshaw, claimed off waivers from the Padres, was expected to join the Cubs on Tuesday. He went 1-1 with a 4.50 ERA in 31 relief appearances this season.
"He's a left-handed guy with a good arm, and we'll evaluate him for the next 40 days or so," Sveum said.
Brooks Raley, who picked up his first Major League win on Saturday against the Reds in his third Major League start, is expected to make another start this Saturday against the Rockies. The rest of the rotation will stay the same, with right-hander Chris Volstad, winless in 24 starts, still in the mix.
The Cubs will have a lot of decisions to make in the offseason about the starting five.
"Going into any winter, that's the first priority -- to address the rotation, see what's out there, what you have in your system," Sveum said.
Matt Garza continues to rehab his right elbow, and will likely be re-evaluated after an X-ray in early September. Garza was placed on the disabled list on Aug. 7 with a right elbow stress reaction.
The Cubs are interviewing candidates this week for the farm director's job, vacated by last week's dismissal of Oneri Fleita. Among the candidates are Brandon Hyde, the Cubs' Minor League field coordinator; Alex Suarez, the team's player development/international scouting coordinator; and Kurt Kemp, former Braves farm director, who is now a scout with the Pirates.
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.