As before, note that the rankings that follow are only in regard to the players concerned making the 2015 rotation on Opening Day. So not included are Bronson Arroyo and Patrick Corbin, who will be showing up later.
- Josh Collmenter
Still has not allowed a run in Spring Training for over two years. Threw four shutout inninings of two-hit, no walk ball in his last Cactus League start on March 17, then kept his eye in on the 22nd by throwing five hitless innings and facing the minimum against the Brewers in a B-squad game. Two outings remain, and all looks set fair for our Opening Day starter.
- Jeremy Hellickson
Had a better start last time out, going four innings and giving up two runs on four hits, with a walk and four strikeouts. Seems to be trying to slide through spring training without being noticed, going by the lack of coverage and interviews with him. Given 2014 was a mix of ill health and poor performance, that probably isn't a bad move.
Rubby De La Rosa
Officially anointed the third starter yesterday, Chip Hale saying,"Rubby has proven enough to us." Hae added that they like the contrast in style between him and the likes of Collmenter and Hellickson, who are "more finesse pitchers." De La Rosa threw 5.2 innings in a B-game yesterday; according to Jody Jackson, he "Struggled early but then was lights out."
Still being paid $12 million this year, so you still know the team will give him every chance as a starting pitcher. Scattered seven hits, two walks and three runs over four innings last time out, but wasn't helped by his defense. Does have a GO/AO ratio of 4.00 this spring, which is encouraging. Less so is Cahill's K:BB ratio of 5:4 in eight innings.
- Chase Anderson
Only outing since last time was in a B-game versus the Angels on March 19, where he threw five innings, allowing four runs, one of which was unearned. Still likely the favorite to get the last spot, but with options left and De La Rosa now inked in to the rotation, not quite as a sure-cert as he was. He starts tomorrow versus the Padres, and a good outing will keep him in front.
- Daniel Hudson
Assured of a roster spot somewhere, Hudson does want a starting spot, but seems unconcerned as to when: "Whether that's this year or next year, whenever it's fine." He stretched out to three innings and 49 pitches in his last outing. He's likely to be on a pitch-count all year, maybe 90 tops, so is that enough, or will we be better going with a starter who doesn't have that restriction?
Being the only left-hander remaining may give him an advantage, and Ray has a K per inning in a dozen Cactus League frames to date. However, there have also been 13 hits and five walks, leading to a 5.28 ERA. He only lasted three innings on March 22, with a pitch count of 74. "Robbie was a little bit erratic," said Hale. "The stuff was there... The tempo of the game just wasn't very good."
- Allen Webster
Saw his last outing curtailed on Monday when he was unfortunately ejected for hitting a Dodger after only one frame - the umpires wouldn't even let him throw more pitches in the bullpen. Has been swatted around at a .372 clip this spring, and a K:BB ratio of 6:3 in 9.1 innings doesn't appear that impressive. May have to rely on those ahead of him stumbling, if he is to progress further.
"Archie, in my opinion, is not ready." Thus spoke Dave Stewart, prompting a reply Tweet, "That's interesting to hear! Just fuel to the fire!" It appears they squared it away, face to face, and Hale complimented Bradley on a spring where the walks are well down over last year (two in 11.1 IP). His velocity is too, though he's unworried: "If I can compete at 92-93-94, then I'm going to do it."
- Yoan Lopez
Remains in camp, so technically in the race, but it's really in name only now. Following a couple of good outings, Lopez struggled after his first inning last night, starting what turned into a 12-0 destruction by the Brewers, and has an 8.38 ERA In his 9.2 innings, with a K:BB ratio of 6:4. May be part of the next round of roster cuts.
- Randall Delgado
Out of options, Delgado will make the roster, but it's looking very unlikely to be in the rotation. After working three innings in each if his previous two outings, Delgado went backward, working just two frames on March 21, allowing two runs (one earned) on three hits, his pitch count dropping from 52 to 35. There's little chance of him being ready as a starter by Opening Day.
- Vidal Nuno, Andrew Chafin, Braden Shipley and Aaron Blair
Nuno and Chafin remain in camp, but with Delgado apparently dropping in to the long relief spot, their changes o making the Opening Day roster both rook a hit, unless the team opts to go with two long relievers. That's not impossible, since both men would also offer another left-handed option out of the 'pen, but would likely depend on Matt Reynolds not being deemed fit for Opening Day.