Garza Getting MRI, May Miss Start of Season

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By Paul Sullivan, Tribune reporter2:36 p.m. CST, February 18, 2013

MESA, Ariz. — Chicago Cubs starter Matt Garza will receive an MRI in the next day or two after suffering a mild left lat strain during his first live batting practice session on Sunday.

Garza, who was sidelined the final two months of the 2012 season with elbow soreness, will be backed up in his rehab.

“The good news is his arm felt really strong,” general manager Jed Hoyer said. “It’s unfortunate for sure and it’s going to set him back a little bit. But we’re still really confident. Our concern obviously was with the elbow injury that shut him down last year.”

It’s too early to know, but Garza could be on the disabled list at the start of the season. The Cubs now have to determine how long a rest he’ll need before starting up again.

“We’re not going to rush this guy, that’s for sure,” Hoyer said.

With Scott Baker expected to start the season on the DL, both Travis Wood and Carlos Villanueva could start out in the rotation. That’s one reason why the Cubs added starting pitching depth in the off-season.

Ryan Dempster suffered a right lat tightness last June and spent time on the 15-day disabled list.

“I want to know why these injuries crop up,” Hoyer said. “It seems to happen to a couple players on every team every year. Better (to happen) in mid-February than mid-March.”

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