From the Cubs Media Department:

The Chicago Cubs today activated left-handed pitcher Ted Lilly from the 15-day disabled list and optioned right-handed pitcher Jeff Samardzija to Triple-A Iowa.

Lilly will make his first start of the 2010 season tonight in Milwaukee.  He was placed on the disabled list on April 4 (retroactive to March 26) to continue his recovery from a left-shoulder arthroscopic debridement procedure performed November 3 by Dr. Lewis Yocum.

A 2009 All-Star, Lilly returns to the Cubs rotation after going 12-9 with a 3.10 ERA (61 ER/177.0 IP) in 27 starts a season ago.  Since joining the Cubs prior to the 2007 campaign, Lilly leads the club with 44 wins, a .629 winning percentage and 509 strikeouts in that span.  Overall, he is 44-26 with a 3.70 ERA (242 ER/588.2 IP) in 95 starts with the Cubs.

Lilly made two minor league appearances as part of his rehab process, combining to go 1-0 with a 1.64 ERA (2 ER/11.0 IP) with 13 strikeouts and two walks.  His most recent appearance took place Monday with Single-A Peoria, when he limited Burlington to one run on three hits and one walk in 7.0 innings, fanning nine.  Lilly threw 88 pitches in that final tune-up.

Samardzija is 0-1 with an 18.90 ERA (7 ER/3.1 IP) in four relief appearances with the Cubs this season.

I’m curious to see what role Samardzija will be used in down in Iowa. If you want him to be a member of the bullpen in the Majors, give him a chance to learn that role in the minors.

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Joe Aiello is the founder of View From the Bleachers and one of the lead writers as well as host of VFTB Radio. Growing up in Chicago, he fondly remembers attending games in the bleachers before that was the popular thing to do. Currently Joe resides in North Carolina with his wife and three kids. Connect with Joe via Twitter / Facebook / E-mail