Lincoln out of 5th spot race
No shock here — Mike Lincoln is out of the fifth spot battle. Manager Dusty Baker told Lincoln this morning that he is going back to the bullpen. Lincoln posted a 11.37 ERA in his three starts.
“We’re starting to narrow it down,” Baker said. “We’re going back to have some meetings and try and determine who is who. It’ll probably go down to the wire, even if we have to use minor league games or ‘B’ games and things like that. As long as we get these guys their innings for endurance sake.”
That leaves Matt Maloney, Micah Owings Travis Wood, Justin Lehr, Kip Wells and of course Aroldis Chapman in the fifth starter race. 2009 first-round pick Mike Leake has been second-best behind Chapman but has no Minor League experience at all. Wells gave up four runs and four hits in two innings and didn’t help his remote chances. Justin Lehr has gotten no starts yet and no more than two innings of work. He worked two scoreless today.
In his latest outing (and first start), Chapman gave one hit and one run on a leadoff homer by Rickie Weeks with one walk and five strikeouts. Read about the start here.
Here is the breakdown of the battle:
Leake: 0.00 ERA, five scoreless innings and six strikeouts.
Wood: 1.29 ERA, five walks and six strikeouts.
Owings: 9.00 ERA in two games but is pitching vs. Indians tonight.
Lehr: 4.26 ERA through 4 games
Maloney: 6.75 ERA through 3 games, including one start, with 4 BB and five Ks.
Wells: 6.00 ERA in four games.
Chapman: 1.29 ERA, two walks and 10 strikeouts.
Based on what we’ve seen so far, Chapman and Wood should have the best chances.
Who do you like? I don’t do the “if the season started today” stuff because it doesn’t start today. Anything can happen between now and April 5, but it’s getting harder for me to imagine that Chapman doesn’t get the spot if he keeps this up.
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