When could Wells and Cashner return?

LOS ANGELES — Cubs pitchers Andrew Cashner and Randy Wells headed to Arizona on Wednesday to continue their rehab there and both could be facing batters next week. — Carrie Muskat

So let’s say they begin facing batters on Monday, May 9th. They get their 4 days off and go back out to face some hitters again on May 14th. If all goes well we might see a rehab start or two at that point.  Since they pitch different days in the big leagues, we’ll say Wells gets a rehab start on May 19th and Cashner on May 20th.

If they each made only one rehab start their next available day to pitch would May 24th and May 25th. Here’s how the pitching may work out the rest of the month:

4th: Carlos Zambrano
6th: Matt Garza
7th: Casey Coleman
8th: Ryan Dempster
10th: Zambrano
11th: Garza
12th: Coleman
13th: Dempster
14th: 5th starter
15th: Zambrano
16th: Garza
17th: Coleman
18th: Dempster
19th: 5th starter
20th: Zambrano
21st: Garza
22nd: Coleman
24th: Dempster
25th: Zambrano
26th: Garza
27th: Coleman
28th: Dempster
29th: Wells
30th: Cashner
31st: Zambrano

If they do 2 sessions facing batters in Arizona and then two rehab starts they’d be on schedule to start the 29th and 30th. I gave them the second rehab start because the Cubs don’t have the 5th starter’s spot due up after the 19th. it’s possible we could see Wells return on the 27th, but I think it’s most likely we’ll see the two start on the 29th and 30th at home vs the Pirates and then the Astros.

6 to 8 weeks seemed a reasonable estimate for their return at the time of their injuries and a return on those two days would put them right at 8 weeks.