3/9/2013 5:00 P.M. ET
Castro, Lillibridge close to returning from injuries
By Carrie Muskat / MLB.com
MESA, Ariz. -- Starlin Castro and Brent Lillibridge could both be back in the Cubs lineup on Wednesday, with Ian Stewart and Josh Vitters close to returning as well.
Castro has been sidelined with a tight left hamstring, and Lillibridge has a sore groin. Both were injured Feb. 27, and Friday's rain delayed some of the rehab work they were to do. The two were able to run on a back field on Saturday.
The Cubs have an off-day Tuesday before resuming play Wednesday against the Rockies.
Stewart and Vitters both have been sidelined since Feb. 21 with sore left quads, and both were able to run on Saturday. They could return at the end of the week.
The Cubs nearly added another name to the list when second baseman Darwin Barney landed awkwardly on his right shoulder trying to grab a line drive on Friday against the Reds. Cubs manager Dale Sveum said Barney was all right.
Prospects Baez, Soler impress in big league camp
MESA, Ariz. -- Although both Javier Baez and Jorge Soler have been impressive in their first big league spring camp, Cubs manager Dale Sveum said neither was expected to be called up in September.
Baez, 20, one of the Cubs' top prospects, hit a two-run home run in the first inning on Saturday off the Indians' David Huff. Soler has shown a lot of maturity for someone who hasn't played much.
"Soler has been impressive to where he just doesn't go up there swinging," Sveum said. "He's got a pretty good idea and lays off a lot of borderline pitches. Soler's poise in the outfield, for a guy who hasn't played a whole lot of games, it's pretty impressive how much poise he has."
The Cubs were expected to make more roster moves soon, possibly after a split-squad weekend series March 16-17. The regulars will be getting more innings.
"[Baez and Soler] have to go down and start playing every single day," Sveum said.
Could either get called up when rosters expand late in the season?
"I personally don't really see it happening in September," Sveum said.
MESA, Ariz. -- Defending champion David DeJesus and video staffer Nate Halm advanced to the final four of the Cubs bunt tournament with wins on Saturday.
DeJesus and Logan Watkins needed overtime to decide their match. Watkins scored 200 points in the overtime round, and DeJesus had 80 points with two bunts remaining. He successfully hit the 100-point mark, then scored a "40" to advance.
"Hey, kid, you're legit," DeJesus called to Watkins.
DeJesus now will face Edwin Maysonet, who beat Michael Brenly to advance. Maysonet needed 80 points with two bunts remaining and hit the 100 mark for a walk-off win.
In the pitchers bracket, Edwin Jackson beat Hisanori Takahashi, and Halm -- who grew up in Mahomet, Ill., and played college baseball at Miami (Ohio) -- topped Blake Parker. First-place prize money is $3,400, and the players are donating $1,000 to the family of Tom Pratt, a Cubs Minor League coach who passed away last year.
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.