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Rain could hinder Cubs' pitching plans

3/17/2012

PHOENIX – The Cubs will have to come up with contingency plans if Sunday and Monday weather forecasts come to fruition.

According to weather.com, rain will move into the Phoenix area late Saturday night with an 80-percent chance of rain Sunday and 30 percent chance of rain Monday.

Rain is also in the forecast in Las Vegas for Saturday (70 percent) and Sunday (50 percent). The Cubs have a game scheduled each of those days in Las Vegas against the Texas Rangers.

The biggest issue for the Cubs will be to make sure their pitchers get their necessary work. Jeff Samardzija and Chris Volstad are scheduled to start the games in Las Vegas, while Andy Sonnanstine is scheduled to start Sunday’s game in Mesa against the White Sox.

Getting back on schedule shouldn’t be too much of an issue as it would have been if Ryan Dempster and Matt Garza, the projected Nos. 1 and 2 starters to open the season, missed a day. Those pitchers have less of a cushion built into their schedules.

ESPNDallas.com reported that the Cubs and Rangers might come up with a plan together if any of the games in Las Vegas get rained out. The teams face each other again on Tuesday, although the Cubs will also be playing a split-squad game that day against the A’s.