The Padres rotation — like other parts of the roster — came with some surprises. As Dennis Lin of the Athletic tweets, Joey Lucchesi is going to take the ball for the team’s second game of the season. And while veteran righty Tyson Ross didn’t open the season on the active roster, he’s expected to be added in short order, Kevin Acee of the San Diego Union-Tribune adds on Twitter. Acee notes that there’ll be some competition early in the season to see who’ll be able to stick as a long-term piece in the unsettled rotation mix, noting that Lucchesi has a chance to stay if he performs well.
Lucchesi, 24, was a fourth-round pick in the 2016 draft and will be the first pitcher taken that season to appear in the Majors. He ranks ninth in a stacked Padres farm system according to both MLB.com and Baseball America, having turned in a combined 2.20 ERA with 9.6 K/9, 2.1 BB/9 and 50 percent ground-ball rate in 139 innings between Class-A Advanced and Double-A last season.
More from the NL West…
- Justin Turner is moving closer to swinging a bat, but he’s not yet been cleared to do so, reports Andy McCullough of the L.A. Times. The Dodgers’ third baseman was diagnosed with a nondisplaced fracture in his wrist late in Spring Training after being hit by a pitch, and Turner tells McCullough that he was initially projected to require two to three weeks of rest before being cleared to swing at all. McCullough writes that Turner will be out until at least May, though his exact timeline remains rather nebulous at present. Turner says that upon being diagnosed with the fracture, he was told the recovery could take anywhere from four to 10 weeks depending on how his wrist responds. “There really is no timetable,” says Turner.
- The Diamondbacks may not need to fill in for outfielder Steven Souza for quite as long as had been feared, as Zach Buchanan of The Athletic reports on Twitter that Souza’s pectoral strain is progressing better than anticipated. That’s promising near-term news for the D-backs, but the team’s long-term outlook remains subject to quite a lot of uncertainty, as Buchanan explores in a subscription piece. The key question, perhaps, is whether the organization can find common ground on a second extension with Paul Goldschmidt. As Buchanan explains, there’s no real indication at this point whether that’ll take place, though CEO Derrick Hall does tell him that “neither side feels an urgency” to explore a new deal at the moment.