We're closing in on the final week of Spring training and unfortunately we still have no clue what our rotation will look like.
1. Clayton Richard - It's safe to say that Richard is going to play a pivotal role in the rotation. We're relying on him for a lot of innings. He'll get us a good amount of quality starts.
2. Edinson Volquez - Like Richard we're relying on him for a lot of innings and a lot of starts. He didn't look overly impressive in the WBC, but he's never looked overly impressive in the MLB so no need to be alarmed. Volquez is what he is, a guy who will consume a lot of innings over the course of the season.
After Volquez we enter sort of a great unknown.
3. Jason Marquis - I think Marquis will be in the opening day rotation. In the year 2013 that's a little sad for the state of our franchise when you really think about it. It keeps me up wondering how a team once built on pitching can go into opening day with a guy who a 35 year old journeyman with a career 3.6 ERA as a pivotal part of our rotation. But he'll be there, and if he makes his starts he'll eat innings so... I guess he's alright for one more year on our roster if our aspirations are to "build for tomorrow."
4. Eric Stults - He's not young but his upside is worth holding down a rotation spot this year. Until Tuesday he hasn't looked good in Spring, but he looked good enough late last year to earn a rotation spot, and if it's worth anything I'm sure a lot of us will be more excited when he goes to the mound in April than the three pitchers above him. After April, it's anyone's guess. Plus he's a lefty.
Now on to the exciting part...
5. Andrew Cashner - God, I hope he's in our April rotation. I know you want to bring him along properly but he's going to be 27 by seasons end. We need to find out what we have in him and getting a full season under his belt will be the one move that could actually benefit our rotation long term.
6. Tyson Ross - He's probably the favorite for the 5th spot and he's doing well this Spring. I'd rather see him in the rotation than Marquis. He's young and he's been hot lately. If does well Friday consider him a lock.
7. Freddy Garcia - If he makes the rotation we might as well join an independent league. There's no need to have Garcia and Marquis in the starting rotation unless everyone else is really, really hurt.
8. Tim Stauffer - Still young enough to become serviceable, but they gotta be thinking bullpen as his future, right?
9. Cory Luebke - Had his setbacks this month, hopefully we see him in the majors in September.
What do you guys think? What do you want to see? How far away do you think our rotation is from being competitive? It's funny how things have changed since 2010. Back then our infield lacked hope but our pitching was promising. Now our infield shows promise while our pitching seems like a cross your fingers and pray that Cashner, Ross, and Luebke pan out sort of thing.