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Wash sticking with Alexi Ogando for Thursday

4/17/2013

CHICAGO -- With Wednesday’s matchup between the Texas Rangers and Chicago Cubs postponed by rain, manager Ron Washington has decided to skip starter Justin Grimm and stick with Thursday’s planned starter, Alexi Ogando.

“He’s been pitching extremely well,” Washington said of Ogando. “(He’s) still trying to find the command of the fastball; once he finds that he should get even better. It’s nice that he’s able to throw his secondary stuff for strikes. But his bread and butter is always going to be the command of his fastball.”

Ogando has a 1.08 ERA in his three starts this season, striking out 17 and walking only five in his 16 2/3 innings of work.

Washington said his rotation going forward after Ogando on Thursday would be Yu Darvish pitching Friday, followed by Nick Tepesch, Grimm and Derek Holland opening the series against the Los Angeles Angels on Monday. Washington said that skipping Grimm was more about keeping his other pitchers on schedule -- Darvish and Tepesch had already been pushed back -- than a commentary on Grimm’s performance.

The weather for Thursday’s game isn’t expected much better than Wednesday, but Washington was unsure what his plan would be if there was another postponement.

“What we’ll end up doing is we haven’t looked that far,” Washington said with a smile. “But Yu’s going to throw Friday. Maybe we’ll skip Tepesch and insert Ogando (on Saturday). I didn’t get a scenario as to if we get rained out tomorrow.”

It appears that the Cubs will try their hardest to get tomorrow’s 1:20 game in despite the inauspicious forecast. Both May 6 and May 9 have been discussed as possible makeup dates for Wednesday’s rainout.