Extra bases

• Cubs reliever James Russell has yet to appear in a game this spring. He said Tuesday it was because of his allergies but manager Rick Renteria said the lefty is going through a "dead arm" phase, which Russell has dealt with in the past.

Russell is coming off his second straight season in which he appeared in 70-plus games. Renteria wasn't worried about the lefty, who threw on the side Tuesday.

• Looking ahead, James McDonald will make his first Cactus League start on Friday against the Angels in one of the Cubs' split-squad games. Edwin Jackson will get his second spring start in Mesa against the Indians. McDonald gave up six runs on three hits against the Angels in his first outing last Friday.

Carrie Muskat is a reporter for MLB.com. She writes a blog, Muskat Ramblings, and you can follow her on Twitter @CarrieMuskat. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.