The Cubs today announced that they were placing right-handed pitcher Yu Darvish on the 10-day disabled list with the parainfluenza virus. While no corresponding move to add a player was made, Iowa Cubs starter Jen Ho Tseng was scratched from his start in Round Rock on Monday night.
Darvish has been a disappointment so far after signing a six-year, $126 million deal over the offseason. In six starts, Darvish is 0-3 with a 6.00 ERA. Whether or not this illness can explain any of that is unclear, but it is still early in Darvish’s Cubs career and he looks like a better pitcher than that and his underlying numbers are not that bad except for his walk totals.
That a player hits the disabled list with the flu is a new thing that has been made possible the past couple seasons with the DL going from 15 days to 10. Darvish will only miss one start because of this trip to the DL, assuming there are no complications.
Tseng, assuming he gets the call, has not been off to a very good start in Iowa this year. In six starts, he’s 0-4 with a 8.04 ERA. However, he is striking out over a batter an inning and his batting-average-on-ball-in-play and his stranding runners on base are way out of line with his career norms. His poor start to the season could simply be bad luck and bad defense in Iowa. Last year Tseng made two September appearances with the Cubs. One was a poor start against the Mets where he gave up five runs over three innings. The other was a three scoreless innings of relief against the Cardinals where he picked up his first major league win.