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Cubs to shut down Samardzija after Saturday start

Associated Press

9/7/2012 6:11:47 PM

PITTSBURGH -- The Chicago Cubs are shutting down starting pitcher Jeff Samardzija following Saturday's start against the Pittsburgh Pirates.

The 25-year-old Samardzija is 8-13 with a 3.91 ERA in 165 2-3 innings this season, the former Notre Dame receiver's first as a starter. Manager Dale Sveum says Samardzija will be replaced in the rotation by right-hander Jason Berken, claimed off waivers from the Orioles on Friday.

Samardzija's start Saturday will be his 28th of the season, the highest on the team. His innings total this season is nearly double his previous career high, set last year when he 8-4 with a 2.97 ERA while working exclusively out of the bullpen.

Sveum pointed to the accumulation of innings -- including the 20 Samardzija tossed in spring training -- as the main reason behind the team's decision.