After Scott Baker's last rehab start, where he said he didn't feel his velocity was there, the Cubs said they'd wait and evaluate the next move.
The next move has now been made:
There's no indication whether Baker will get any more starts beyond this one; after Sunday's game, the Cubs' seven subsequent games are all against contending teams (three at the Reds, four at the Pirates).
Scott Baker to start Sunday for #Cubs with Travis Wood sliding back to Monday at Cincinnati.,— Bruce Miles (@BruceMiles2112) September 6, 2013
Baker last pitched in the major leagues September 24, 2011 with the Twins, and last started a game August 8, 2011 for Minnesota against the Red Sox. He made eight rehab starts at various levels in the Cubs system this year, compiling a 5.46 ERA and 1.517 WHIP in 29⅔ innings. He walked 10, struck out 16 and served up six home runs.
Those numbers aren't good, but that's pretty much spring training for Baker, who made just one spring appearance before leaving with a "setback." The photo above is Baker warming up before that appearance, which was on St. Patrick's Day (thus the green cap). Here's the boxscore from that game.
It's surely worth seeing what Baker has, if anything; that way the Cubs can have a better idea of whether to put him in the mix for the rotation in 2014 by re-signing him. Baker is nearing the end of the one-year, $5.5 million contract he signed with the Cubs last offseason, so he'll be a free agent.