Tyler Anderson gets relief work for Rockies; rotation could be in flux

Michel CooperLast Update : Friday 23 June 2017 - 3:32 AM
Tyler Anderson gets relief work for Rockies; rotation could be in flux

The Rockies began tweaking their rotation and bullpen Thursday.

The club optioned struggling right-hander reliever Carlos Estevez to Triple-A Albuquerque and reinstated left-handed starter Tyler Anderson off the disabled list.

Then Anderson pitched the ninth inning in relief in the Rockies’ 10-3 loss to Arizona. He struck out the side after allowing a leadoff walk.

“It was weird, getting loose … then there are couple pitching changes and then you end up throwing 45 pitches down there,” said Anderson, who had not pitched out of the bullpen since 2010 when he was at the University of Oregon.

Now the question becomes, what does the club do with Anderson for the long-term? He is officially listed as a starter, but he could also see time in the bullpen going forward.

“I’m sure we are going to do something, but I don’t know for sure what. But we have a lot of options, which is a good thing,” said Anderson, who said his swollen and sore left knee has fully healed.

Anderson said the Rockies have not told him what his role will be, but there could be tweaks in the rotation as the Rockies head to Los Angeles on Friday for a critical three-game series against the Dodgers.

“As far as a plan, things will become clear here over the next couple of days,” Black said, without divulging more.

Rookie left-hander Kyle Freeland is scheduled to face the Dodgers on Friday night, with veteran right-hander Tyler Chatwood in line to pitch Saturday night.

The Rockies are cognizant of overworking their young starting pitchers, Black acknowledged, so the team could be mixing and matching starters for the remainder of the season to preserve the arms of rookies Antonio Senzatela, German Marquez, Jeff Hoffman and Freeland.

“As time goes on, the players will tell us, though their performance, how we will handle this,” Black said. “We are going to do everything we can to ensure that physically they stay sharp, and mentally they stay sharp, as we go through the summer.”

Asked if the Rockies would consider completely shutting down one of their rookie starters this season, Black replied: “In theory, yes. But we might not let it get to that number (of innings).”

Black said he likes the idea that the Rockies could use as many as eight different starting pitchers, once Jon Gray and Chad Bettis are completely healthy and ready for big-league duty. Gary is scheduled to pitch his third rehab game with Triple-A Albuquerque on Saturday.

Footnotes. Black said that outfielder David Dahl, on the DL since the second game of spring training, is slowly getting better from his rib injury, but said there is no timetable for Dahl’s return. … Pat Valaika continues to perform well for Colorado as a pinch hitter. He hit an RBI double in the eighth inning and is now 8-for-23 (.348) with five doubles, one homer and five RBIs as a pinch hitter. … Arizona first baseman Paul Goldschmidt batted 3-for-5 with a homer and four RBIs. He has reached base in 61 of his last 63 games vs. the Rockies, with a .380 batting average.

Looking ahead

Rockies RHP Kyle Freeland (8-4, 3.42 ERA) at Dodgers LHP Alex Wood (7-0, 1.90), 8:10 p.m., ROOT TV, 850-AM

Wood was the best pitcher in the National League in May, including a dominating performance in a victory over the Rockies, in  which he struck out 10 and walked just one over six innings. After Wood dominated the Reds last week over eight innings, allowing just one run on four hits, he became the first Dodgers pitcher since Orel Hershiser in 1985 to win go unbeaten in his first 10 starts to a season. The Rockies are undefeated in the rookie Freeland’s two starts against the Dodgers. He is coming off a bend-but-didn’t-break outing against the Giants, with eight hits against him, but only one run. Nick Groke, The Denver Post

Saturday: Rockies RHP Tyler Chatwood (6-7, 4.08) at Dodgers LHP Clayton Kershaw (10-2, 2.61), 8:10 p.m., ROOT

Sunday: Rockies RHP German Marquez (5-3, 3.92) at Dodgers RHP Brandon McCarthy (6-3, 2.87), 2:10 p.m., ROOT

Monday: Rockies at Giants, pitchers TBA, 8:08 p.m., ROOT

Source: denverpost

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Michel Cooper