With today’s awful news about righty Chad Bettis, the Rockies face a dilemma in the rotation. As Nick Groke of the Denver Post writes, the club had believed it was looking for one starter to step up in camp, but now it needs two. It was debatable already whether the club ought to have added a starter, but now the need is all the more apparent. A variety of youthful competitors are on hand, of course, along with 30-year-old southpaw Chris Rusin, who’s probably best suited for a return to the bullpen. While there’s plenty of interesting talent, the Rockies may feel a need to find more certainty as they seek to push toward contention.
Here’s more on a few pitching situations from around the game:
- Signed to provide the Rangers with depth, righty Dillon Gee may now be in position to take a spot in the Opening Day rotation with Andrew Cashner sidelined. As T.R. Sullivan of MLB.com writes, Gee says he feels healthy and likes the way he’s throwing. As he works back to full health following thoracic outlet surgery, Gee is also working to smooth out mechanical issues he identified in his work last year with the Royals.
- It’s a similar story for Kyle Kendrick, who’s importance to the Red Sox has risen with David Price’s health issues. Evan Drellich of the Boston Herald reports that the 32-year-old won’t have an opt-out opportunity until June 15th, which gives the club some flexibility, though it’s possible he’ll be needed earlier. As Drellich writes, the Sox are encouraged by Kendrick’s initial showing, with manager John Farrell noting that the team likes that he’s working off of his sinker and cutter rather than relying on the four-seam fastball. From Kendrick’s perspective, “I feel right with where I’m at with my stuff.”
- Mets righty Zack Wheeler is drawing some good reviews from his early showing on the mound, as Marc Carig of Newsday reports on Twitter. An “evaluator” tells Carig that Wheeler is showing a “smooth delivery” and that the ball is coming out of his hand well. That’s encouraging for the Mets, who have the depth to account for any further delays from the righty but no doubt want to see him contributing in the majors sooner than later.