Darvish, who has been sidelined by triceps and elbow injuries, shook his arm as he left the field after striking out Great Lakes’ Romer Cuadrado with a 95-mph fastball for the last out of the first.
When Darvish warmed up for the second, he threw six pitches and winced on each one. Miguel Amaya, who caught Darvish’s rehab start for South Bend on June 25, walked to the mound and summoned manager Jimmy Gonzalez and a trainer. After a short discussion, Darvish walked to the dugout.
Darvish, who turned 32 on Thursday, signed a $126 million, six-year contract with Chicago in February. But he has made just eight starts in his first year with the Cubs, going 1-3 with a 4.95 ERA.
The Cubs began the day with an NL-best 71-51 record, but their rotation is looking a little thin. Mike Montgomery was placed on the 10-day disabled list on Friday with left shoulder inflammation, and Tyler Chatwood has struggled in his first year with Chicago after signing a $38 million, three-year contract over the winter.
The Cubs were optimistic about a possible return for Darvish after he threw about 55 pitches in a simulated game on Tuesday. But that optimism was likely wiped out by Sunday’s rehab appearance.
Darvish allowed a first-pitch single and issued a walk to his first two batters, and then retired three in a row. He totaled 19 pitches, 10 for strikes.
In his June rehab start for South Bend, Darvish allowed one run and three hits in five innings. His fastball reached 94 mph, but he complained afterward that his arm got tired as the outing went on.