Cubs’ Nico Hoerner begins rehab on Sunday – NBC Chicago

Nico Hoerner Begins Rehab Mission Sunday Originally Appeared On NBC Sports Chicago

For the first time, Nico Hoerner will dress for the Iowa Cubs.

Hoerner, who skipped the triple A on his way to the major leagues, will begin a rehab mission with Iowa on Sunday.

This is potentially big news for a Cubs squad that has struggled recently without the productive contact bats of Hoerner and Matt Duffy, who has been sidelined since May 25 with a bulging disc to his back.

Duffy, whose rehab has been slowed down after pushing the intensity too hard at times in recent weeks, is hoping to be back around the All-Star break, he said on Saturday. That could mean the July 16-18 series in Arizona.

Hoerner, meanwhile, could be back at the end of the current road trip. He’s been out since late May due to left hamstring strain he suffered until the first goal on May 25 against the Pirates.

The 24-year-old stepped up his baseball activities this week, including running bases and taking balls off the ground in Los Angeles.

“It has progressed well in the last few days,” manager David Ross said of Hoerner’s progress.

Hoerner and Duffy were instrumental in the Cubs’ offensive turnaround in May, with the latter gaining regular playing time after starting the season on the bench.

The Cubs ended a six-game streak last Sunday where all of their points came in solo or two-pointers.

Duffy said he felt “much better now”. He pitched on Friday and picked up sharply and will start working on the pitch on Sunday.

“We’re just going slow and closing the gap between the different things on the pitch a bit better,” he said.

With Hoerner, pitchers Trevor Williams and Justin Steele will begin their own rehab missions on Sunday with Iowa, and Dillon Maples is expected to pitch on Saturday. Ross said David Bote was not far behind.

“The guys are kind of starting to take that corner here before the all-star break,” Ross said.

“It’ll be good to have these guys a few games under their belt, get them back to good health, get them back into the lineup and have a few more days off to recuperate too, with the all-star break at come.

“It’s kind of good timing. A lot of these guys definitely missed it.”

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