"Lindstrom today, holy [cow], the ball out of his hand; it's got some life to it," Cooper said. Of Mitchell Boggs, he said: "The first time I'm actually seeing him close. Hey, I see what he's doing here. I kind of like it. Oh, knuckle curve."
Cooper added that fifth starter candidate Felipe Paulino is throwing without restrictions after surgery last September to remove a cyst from his shoulder. Paulino and Boggs, to some extent, would qualify as new members of the "Coop can fix him" club, a previously injured or struggling group that Cooper takes great pride in helping turn things around in Chicago.
"I like guys like that; we've done well with that," Cooper said. "If you do well with enough of those, it gives you a chance to keep your job.
"My goal is, I don't care who you are or how many years you're playing. Scotty Downs, I'm looking for you to have the best year you've ever had. I want you to have a career year with us, under my watch. Win. Keep your job, because I like being the pitching coach. We don't succeed on all of them, but I think we've done a pretty good job with it. And I do like those guys."
Scott Merkin is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Merk's Works, and follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.