MESA, Ariz. -- National League Cy Young Award winner Jake Arrieta is on schedule to throw his bullpen on Sunday, and the Cubs will have a better idea after that as to whether the right-hander can make the Opening Day start on April 4.
Arrieta had to exit his last outing on Thursday after throwing 34 pitches to seven batters in one-third of an inning because he was having trouble gripping the ball. He had applied Super Glue to a small blister on his right thumb, and the glue created a slick surface. The blister never opened.
Athletic trainer PJ Mainville told Cubs manager Joe Maddon that he expects Arrieta to be ready for the season opener against the Angels.
"[Mainville] thought it was a lot better almost immediately the next day," Maddon said. "Let's just see what happens. ... As of right now, it seems to be pretty good."
Arrieta is on schedule to start Tuesday against the Athletics, which would be his last tuneup before the regular season begins.
Carrie Muskat is a reporter for MLB.com. She writes a blog, Muskat Ramblings. You can follow her on Twitter @CarrieMuskat and listen to her podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.