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Order for back of rotation still up in the air

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- Cubs manager Dale Sveum said they're still looking at matchups to determine how the starting pitchers will line up for the opening week of play.

Jeff Samardzija will kick things off April 1 against the Pirates and be followed by Edwin Jackson. Scott Feldman may start the third game, but that could change. Feldman has faced Pittsburgh twice in his career, and given up six runs on 14 hits over 7 2/3 innings. Carlos Villanueva and Travis Wood round out the rotation.

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Samardzija will tune up with a 10 a.m. "B" game in Surprise, Ariz., on Wednesday against the Rangers. It's a long drive.

"If he wants to pitch, that's where he has to go," Sveum said, laughing.

The Cubs play the Rangers in Surprise on Wednesday. Why not have Samardzija start that game?

"He wanted to go and get his work in," Sveum said. "It's perfect because he's just going to go and throw 15, 17 pitches an inning. He'll go four innings, then [Blake] Parker will pitch two innings."

Carrie Muskat is a reporter for MLB.com. She writes a blog, Muskat Ramblings, and you can follow her on Twitter @CarrieMuskat. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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