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Cubs designate DeWitt for assignment

Published: Monday, May 7, 2012 2:06 p.m. CDT

The latest dire victim of the Cubs' clubhouse virus is third baseman Ian Stewart, which made infielder Blake DeWitt the latest indirect victim.

Here's the way DeWitt found himself designated for assignment by the Cubs for the second time in six months:

Sunday starter Matt Garza contracted the flu, so Travis Wood had to be summoned from the minors for a one-time start. That meant the Cubs needed a vacated roster spot and .138 hitter DeWitt was the odd-man out.

He went through the same process in early February but cleared waivers and was re-signed.

"Hopefully he clears waivers and stays with us," manager Dale Sveum said. "It's unfortunate, because of the flu bug it costs somebody his job. But hopefully he stays in the organization."

Part II: The Cubs will need to fill DeWitt's backup infield spot when the Braves visit Monday and Wood is, presumably, sent back to Triple-A Iowa. The leading candidate appears to be Adrian Cardenas.

When Cardenas was claimed off waivers from Oakland in February, it was DeWitt who was designated for assignment to clear roster space.

A former No. 1 pick of the Phillies, Cardenas, who bats left-handed, has spent four years at Triple A and is hitting .319 with seven doubles and 17 RBIs in 26 games for Iowa.

Sick bay report: Garza and infielder Jeff Baker were back in the Cubs' clubhouse Sunday, although both were weakened by their bouts with flu.

Stewart had recovered enough by late Sunday to deliver a pinch-single and score the tying run in the ninth inning.

"Stewart was about as sick as you could get and came up with a huge hit," Sveum said. "I asked him if he could go into the game and he was like, 'I'm a little dizzy and can't really see straight right now.'

"That's what we had to deal with, guys able to get up and give you an at-bat but not to spend a few innings in the field."

The trick has been to keep the bug from continuing to spread.

"As (sick) as these guys have been, you try to keep them away from the ballpark," Sveum said, "but that's hard to do when they need to get treatment and medicine."

Extra innings: Anthony Rizzo had his 12-game hitting streak ended Sunday at Iowa, although he did walk twice. He is hitting .364 with 25 RBIs in 28 games. ... Randy Wells lost for Iowa on Saturday and is 1-1 with an 8.38 ERA. ...Lefty Gerardo Concepcion, signed after leaving Cuba, is 0-3 with a 18.90 ERA at Class A Peoria.

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(c)2012 the Chicago Tribune

Visit the Chicago Tribune at www.chicagotribune.com

Distributed by MCT Information Services

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