Quade opts for trio of long relief pitchers

Quade opts for trio of long relief pitchers

SURPRISE, Ariz. -- The Cubs don't have a designated long relief pitcher, but manager Mike Quade will rely on James Russell, Marcos Mateo and Jeff Samardzija for that role.

Quade finalized his bullpen on Saturday, naming Mateo to the last opening. The right-hander was called up last season for the first time, appearing in 21 games and posting a 5.82 ERA.

This winter, he pitched for Estrellas in the Dominican Republic and went 2-0 with a 2.40 ERA in 12 games.

Instead of designating one pitcher, Quade said he expects Russell, Mateo and Samardzija to be able to throw 40 pitches in a game and go at least two innings. Russell and Samardzija have both started in the past.

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The other pitchers in the 'pen -- Kerry Wood, Sean Marshall, and John Grabow -- will most likely be used for one inning or a specific situation.

"That's very manageable to me coming out of the chute," Quade said of the setup. "Barring something really going south, I think that works best."