Cubs recall Kyle Ryan, place Shelby Miller on injured list

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Tim Stebbins
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Cubs bullpen moves: Ryan added, Miller to injured list originally appeared on NBC Sports Chicago

The Cubs bullpen gained a third lefty on Friday with southpaw Kyle Ryan recalled from the South Bend alternate site.

Ryan’s addition corresponded with right-handed swingman Shelby Miller hitting the 10-day injured list (retroactive to April 22) with a low back strain.

Ryan’s 2021 season was delayed as he spent the first few weeks of spring training on the COVID-19 related IL. He joined camp at the end of February but didn’t appear in any games before the Cubs optioned him to Triple-A in late March.

The 29-year-old was also delayed from the start of 2020 summer camp after testing positive for COVID-19 while at home before camp opened.

With both delays in mind, the Cubs wanted to give him ample time to prepare for the season. Manager David Ross said the Cubs noticed a drop off when Ryan pitched in back-to-back days last season, along with a velocity decrease.

“We wanted to make sure we did right by him, as well as us, to set him up to build his arm back up sufficiently so he could help us out,” Ross said Friday of Ryan.

Ross said Ryan threw one inning Wednesday in South Bend but has stretched out to contribute multiple innings. The club also is comfortable using him vs. lefties and righties.

Ryan threw two shutout innings on Friday, allowing a hit and one walk.

“It’s a really valuable piece down there when he’s right,” Ross said. "He showed that a couple of years ago."

Ryan finished 2019 with a 3.54 ERA in a team-leading 73 appearances.

Miller, 30, has made three appearances since the Cubs added him from South Bend last week. He’s allowed seven earned runs on seven hits and five walks in two innings. He didn’t give up a run in his most recent outing.

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