Notes: Mound beckons Marshall, Wood
Piniella aims to break camp with 12 pitchers; DeRosa at No. 2?
MESA, Ariz. -- Sean Marshall is about one week behind the other Cubs pitchers so he can continue to strengthen his left shoulder, while Kerry Wood is expected to throw off a mound on Monday after his hot tub incident.
"When last season ended, I had a lot of wear and tear," Marshall said Friday. "I took about a month off, and they said I needed some [physical therapy]. I'm about a week from getting back on the mound. I feel a lot better than I did at the end of last year."
The problem was his rotator cuff, but the situation was never severe enough for Marshall to consider surgery.
"I'm a little behind schedule, but I feel my hard work this offseason will pay off and my shoulder will get back to full strength or even better than it was last season," Marshall said. "I should be able to catch up with these guys by the time games start."
Wood arrived in camp in shape, but with a bruised right side after falling out of his hot tub last Monday. Cubs athletic trainer Mark O'Neal told manager Lou Piniella that Wood had "bumped up his intensity" on Friday, but Piniella didn't like that wording. Wood has had enough bumps and bruises.
"The bottom line with Kerry is we think he'll be throwing off the mound Monday," Piniella said.
Pitch counts: Piniella said he expects to break camp with 12 pitchers.
"We're playing a lot of games early in the year, we go to the [West] Coast where you're not going to get rained out," Piniella said of the Cubs' April schedule. "Also, I don't like the idea of whoever our fifth starter is to pitch all spring and then sit. We'll stay in rotation as much as possible when the season starts so everybody gets their innings in."
Still to be determined is who will be the long man in the 'pen. Left-hander Neal Cotts will be stretched out this spring. Someone asked if Mark Prior was a candidate for a relief role.
"I didn't say that," Piniella said. "We are going to have to find somebody who can go long. We need somebody out there who can pitch some innings out of the long spot. I don't know who that's going to be."
Second to none: The No. 2 hole is up for grabs this spring. Alfonso Soriano will lead off, Derrek Lee will hit third and Aramis Ramirez fourth, but those are the only set spots. Mark DeRosa could fit into the No. 2 spot.
"It'd be a nice place to hit -- ahead of Derrek Lee and behind Soriano," DeRosa said Friday. "You'll see a lot of fastballs in that two-hole."
"His style of hitting is very conducive to the No. 2 hole, and also the sixth and seventh holes," Piniella said. "That's what I envision. With the two-hole, we have a young man in the leadoff spot who can steal 45 bases, so we need to find somebody who can work the count a little bit so Soriano can run. That's something we have to look at in the spring."
Early bird: Outfielder Cliff Floyd is in Cubs camp, eager to get to know his new teammates. He underwent surgery last October to fix a bone spur that was running against a tendon in his foot.
"I know the way I feel right now ... I really feel better than I've ever felt in terms of my feet, in terms of my legs, in terms of what I can do, in terms of hitting, in terms of throwing," he said.
He was upset to read comments from pitcher John Thomson, who said Floyd's defense was "a little shaky."
"For me, defense has been my No. 1 thing for a long time," Floyd said. "I read that [comment by Thomson] and I thought to myself, 'I could've called a couple people and blasted him back.' At this point in my career, the only person he hurt was my mom and dad's feelings. From what I've seen, he's not one of the greatest pitchers in the game, so it didn't affect me in terms of my pride. I wish him the best of luck. Hopefully his luck will change in Toronto. It didn't change in the National League."
Floyd, who grew up a Cubs fan and still has plenty of friends and family in the Chicago area, has taken steps already to avoid any problems regarding tickets. Anyone interested should call his parents. He's designated three to his father, three to his mother, and they can decide who gets seats at Wrigley Field.
History lesson: Wood's tub incident is not a first for the Cubs. On June 18, 1956, lefty Paul Minner was sidelined after slipping in the bathtub of his New York hotel room. He hurt his neck. Initial X-rays showed Minner had suffered a slight concussion. A second set of X-rays revealed he had a displaced vertebra in his neck. A third set, done eight days after the fall, showed he had suffered a hairline fracture at the top of his spine.
He was confined to a New York hospital until June 27, when he was flown to Chicago and hospitalized. Minner wore a head-to-hip cast until early December, which was two months after he was released by the Cubs. He tried to come back with the Pirates in 1957, but never pitched in another Major League game.
Extra bases: If Carlos Zambrano has an arbitration hearing Feb. 20, he'll be the first Cub to do so since Mark Grace in 1993. Grace asked for $4.1 million, and the Cubs countered with $3.1 million. The Cubs won the case. The last Cub to win in arbitration was Shawon Dunston in 1990. He won a $1.25 million contract; the Cubs had offered $925,000. ... Coach Ivan DeJesus is working with the pitchers on their bunting. ... Minor League pitcher Jeff Samardzija did get his hair trimmed on Thursday after Piniella suggested it. ... WGN Radio broadcaster Ron Santo stopped by Fitch Park to check on the team. Santo is up for induction into the Hall of Fame via the Veterans Committee, which will release its vote Feb. 27. ... Among the early arrivals were Matt Murton, Tyler Colvin, Eric Patterson and Angel Pagan.
Carrie Muskat is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.