7/9/2013 7:56 P.M. ET
2012 pick Almora offers advice to '13 draftee Bryant
By Carrie Muskat / MLB.com
CHICAGO -- Albert Almora was one of the last first-round picks from the 2012 First-Year Player Draft to sign. He has some advice for Kris Bryant, who was the Cubs' No. 1 pick in June this year, and is still unsigned.
"Just have fun," said Almora, the Cubs' 2012 No. 1 selection who was at Wrigley Field on Tuesday, an off-day for the Class A Kane County team. "This game can be taken away from you any day. Just play every day like it's your last and have fun doing it."
Almora knows about that. He broke a hamate bone in his left hand in Spring Training and didn't join Kane County until May 22.
What about his negotiations last year?
"It's something that was crazy in my life, and something I'll never forget," he said. "I'm just happy I'm here and in a great organization like the Cubs."
Almora, who was batting .353 in 38 games with Kane County, is enjoying his time with the Cougars.
"I love it, we have great fans," the 19-year-old outfielder said. "We haven't been doing too well, and [the fans] still come out. I love playing in front of those guys. It's a great place to be."
Wood could pitch in All-Star Game on side day
CHICAGO -- Travis Wood may get a chance to pitch in the All-Star Game after all.
Manager Dale Sveum said Tuesday that the left-hander, who will be the Cubs' sole representative in the July 16 game at Citi Field, could pitch one inning or face one batter, depending on what National League manager Bruce Bochy needs.
Wood is scheduled to pitch Sunday night against the Cardinals, the last game before the break. The All-Star Game is the following Tuesday, which would be his side day.
"It will all depend on how Sunday goes," Sveum said about how much Wood can pitch for the NL team. "Bochy can use him for a left-handed hitter. It's going to be a side day anyway. I've got no problem with him pitching one inning, or 20 pitches. He goes all out on his side days anyways."
On Monday, Sveum said Wood most likely would not pitch in the game because of his regular-season start on Sunday night, saying that would be a good showcase for the left-hander.
Wood, who tossed his Major League-leading 17th quality start Tuesday night against the Angels at Wrigley Field, may also try to lobby with Bochy for at least one batter.
"That's all Bochy -- he has control over that," Sveum said.
The 84th All-Star Game will be televised nationally by FOX Sports, in Canada by Rogers Sportsnet and RDS, and worldwide by partners in more than 200 countries via MLB International's independent feed. ESPN Radio and ESPN Radio Deportes will provide national radio coverage of the All-Star Game. MLB Network and SiriusXM also will also provide comprehensive All-Star Week coverage. For more information, please visit allstargame.com.
Injury roundup: Bogusevic probable for Cards series
CHICAGO -- Brian Bogusevic, sidelined since July 4 with tightness in his left hamstring, could be back in the Cubs lineup in time to face the Cardinals on Thursday.
"He's pretty close," Cubs manager Dale Sveum said of Bogusevic, who was batting .290 before he was injured. "It looks like the way things have gone the last couple days, by the Cardinals series on Thursday, he should be ready to play in a game. I think he's at the point where he can pinch-hit and stay on the bases instead of using a pitcher to pinch-run before."
Catcher Welington Castillo also was feeling better after being scratched from Monday's game because he was feeling ill due to dehydration.
David DeJesus, on the disabled list since June 15 with a sprained right shoulder, was making progress, and able to hit in the cage and throw.
"It's getting there," DeJesus said Tuesday. "There are some movements that are like, 'oh,' [and it reminds me] something happened. I have to keep it tight."
He's tinkering with his hitting now.
"We're trying to find a swing that doesn't bother it but still not make a whole new swing out there," he said. "We have to find what works best."
Scott Baker, rehabbing from Tommy John surgery on his right elbow, threw four innings in his fourth simulated game on Tuesday in Mesa, Ariz. If all goes well, the next step for the right-hander could be a Minor League game. Baker could join the Cubs in a month if he continues to progress.
• Matt Garza said Monday he would like to stay with the Cubs and sign an extension. Does manager Dale Sveum get involved in the negotiations?
"It's always nice to have a guy like that around," Sveum said of Garza, "but unless I'm asked my opinion on it, that's Theo and Jed's territory, so I just leave that up to them and the ownership."
That would be Theo Epstein, Cubs president of baseball operations, and general manager Jed Hoyer. Have they asked Sveum for his opinion?
"No," he said.
• On Monday, Alfonso Soriano became the first Cubs player with two extra-base hits and two stolen bases in a game since Glenallen Hill did so June 29, 1994.
Soriano entered Tuesday's game batting .381 over his past 10 games and with 385 career home runs.
"He's closing in on 400 home runs, and he's had one heck of a career up to this point," Sveum said of the veteran. "You can't take anything away from his character and what he means to some of the younger players, if they're paying attention and watching the way he does things. It's pretty special to have a guy like that on the team."
Soriano has hit six home runs in his past 10 games, including two on Saturday, to reach 177 homers with the Cubs. He ranks 12th on the franchise's all-time list.
• Right-hander Shawn Camp, who compiled a 7.04 ERA in 26 games in relief, cleared waivers and was given his unconditional release on Tuesday. Camp had been designated for assignment on July 3.
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.