Chicago Cubs manager Dale Sveum announced on Saturday that pitcher Matt Garza will make his long-awaited 2013 debut for the Cubs on Tuesday against the Pittsburgh Pirates. Sveum also said that Carlos Villanueva will move to the bullpen in order to make room for Garza in the starting rotation.
Garza has not pitched for the big league team since July of last season. He has made four rehab starts, his last on Thursday for the Triple-A Iowa Cubs, where he was simply dominant. Garza pitched six innings, not allowing a run, gave up two hits, did not walk a batter and struck out six.
With his dominance, it became obvious that Garza was ready to return.
Garza said that he hoped he did not have a pitch limit restriction, but Sveum made it obvious that would not be the case. “We probably won’t let him go beyond 85 or 90 pitches,” Sveum told the media according to the Chicago Tribune.
Garza appears to be very anxious that he is returning to the big leagues after a long time on the shelf. “I am excited. I am just happy I don’t have to go to rehab again … This actually means something. I can’t wait. It has been 10 months in the making so I am excited to get back out there.”
It will definitely be nice to see Garza pitch again for the Cubs. The rotation has been outstanding so far, and the addition of arguably their best pitcher can only help. With Garza returning, someone will have to be sent down or designated for assignment.
With Villanueva going to the bullpen, the most logical candidate is Shawn Camp, who has struggled mightily this year.