The Chicago Cubs have suspended Scott Baker's throwing program, according to Patrick Mooney of CSN Chicago, shutting down the right-hander due to elbow inflammation.
Bleed Cubbie Blue: The 2013 Cubs By The Numbers
The Cubs sent Baker for an MRI exam after he experienced soreness in his elbow during his recent spring training debut. The 31-year-old allowed three runs on three hits with two walks and no strikeouts while only recording one out. He's been diagnosed with elbow inflammation for the time being, but he'll be evaluated further by a team doctor in the near future.
Baker is returning from Tommy John surgery, a procedure he underwent last April. Tommy John usually carries a recovery period of 12 months, so the Cubs had hoped the veteran would be able to return early into the 2013 season. They were confident enough in his rehab process that they signed him to a one-year, $5.5 million contract this winter, that also includes up to $1.5 million in incentives.
Baker last appeared in the majors in 2011, posting an ERA of 3.14 over 23 appearances -- including 21 starts -- for the Minnesota Twins. He owns a career ERA of 4.15 with a strikeout-to-walk ratio of 3.44 over seven seasons in the majors.