Yu Darvish Comeback SZN is off to an inauspicious start, but things could've been a lot worse.
With Opening Day just over a week away, Darvish was removed early from his spring start Tuesday afternoon.
Before Darvish could finish his fifth inning of work, Cubs training staff, manager Joe Maddon and pitching coach Tommy Hottovy came out to the mound to investigate the pitcher's hand.
It turned out to simply be a blister issue on the ring finger of his pitching hand:
Blister on right ring finger for Darvish
— Mark Gonzales (@MDGonzales) March 19, 2019
Cubs nation can breathe a collective sigh of relief. Blisters can be tricky, but that would obviously be a better outcome than anything related to the bone bruise or elbow surgery Darvish had over the winter.
There's also good news in that Darvish doesn't plan on peeing on the blister, despite his teammates' suggestions:
Darvish felt it on last pitch, slider, didn't feel need to push it & hurt something else while compensating for that. Will treat w cream & laser, play catch tomorrow to see how it feels & bullpen Thurs. Some teammates recommended, but he will not pee on blister, Moises-style
— Sahadev Sharma (@sahadevsharma) March 19, 2019
The 32-year-old came to Cubs camp this spring looking like a totally different pitcher after the stress of last season. He was in good health and able to let it go freely on the mound while also conducting media sessions in English and seeming more at ease off the field.
After signing a 6-year, $126 million deal with the Cubs last February, Darvish managed to pitch only 40 innings across 8 starts before hitting the disabled list Memorial Day weekend with what was initially ruled as a triceps injury.
Darvish has 14 strikeouts in 12 innings this spring.