Yu Darvish was scratched from Thursday’s scheduled start after feeling a little under the weather and heading to the doctor’s office — he clarified that it was not the hospital — for precautionary testing. Everything came back clean and he was feeling well enough to pitch Friday, so the Cubs had him throw three simulated innings in order to maintain his regular schedule.
It’s even more difficult to take anything away from a sim game than it is from a regular spring start, especially when they’re doing things like putting runners on second, but Darvish struck out six with one walk. He also gave up a two-out home run to Steven Souza Jr. that drove in a runner who had been placed on second after Darvish retired the first two batters.
MLB.com’s Jordan Bastian tracked the whole outing in his personal shorthand, including a running tally of pitches and strikes. In the end, Darvish registered nine swings and misses on 47 total pitches, with just the one hit allowed.
The Darvish sim game details ? pic.twitter.com/1pN0Ol0SoN
— Jordan Bastian (@MLBastian) March 6, 2020
If you’re wondering about the four outs he had to record in the second frame, it was a matter of wanting to get him to a prescribed pitch count. Same goes for the two outs in the third, at which point he’d logged enough throws to call it a day. Knowing the outing was scheduled for three innings, we can reasonably assume the max pitch count was set at 50.
Darvish remains on track to be ready for Opening Day, but David Ross has yet to announce his decision for that first game in Milwaukee.