Owings has his health in return

Owings has his health in return

MESA, Ariz. -- The Cubs put a hurting on Micah Owings Saturday, but Owings' health held up, and that was success enough for the Diamondbacks.

Owings was scratched from his scheduled start Monday due to soreness behind his right shoulder, something he'd occasionally felt before, and Arizona did not want to exacerbate it. In his return to Cactus League action at HoHoKam Park, Owings yielded five hits, three walks and four runs in 1 2/3 innings.

"Arm felt great, body felt pretty good," Owings said. "I'll take that."

The poor showing on the mound, Owings said, was due to some mechanical issues that left him feeling out of sync.

"I think I was a little quick on my front side, kind of carrying the ball a little bit, coming across my body," Owings said. "It's something I'm going to resolve quickly."

Manager Bob Melvin said the soreness Owings experienced earlier this spring was nothing to be concerned with going forward.

"You know, to an extent, everybody goes through something like that in Spring Training," Melvin said.

Owings, last season's National League Silver Slugger at his position, was slotted seventh in the Diamondbacks' lineup Saturday, but he never got a chance to lift his lumber.

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Owings walked two in a scoreless first inning, and in the second, the Cubs chipped away with four singles, a double and a walk. Melvin lifted Owings with two out, two on and a 4-0 deficit because Owings had reached his pitch count of 50.

"You could see [Owings] was struggling with his fastball," Melvin said. "[But] his velocity was there, and he was using all his pitches."

While Owings did not get to bat, he was nonetheless pleased to be slotted there in the lineup.

"It's an honor, and it's something that [Melvin] is playing with," Owings said, "but I'm really going to focus on the mound [rather than the plate]."

Mark Thoma is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.