Tracy sets remainder of starting rotation

Tracy sets remainder of starting rotation

Tracy sets remainder of starting rotation
SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- Much of the news surrounding the Rockies pitchers Friday revolved around 49-year-old Jamie Moyer securing his spot on the staff.

But Colorado manager Jim Tracy set the entire rotation in his pregame media session, opting to begin the season with four starters. That means highly touted prospect Drew Pomeranz will begin the season in the Minors.

As expected, Jeremy Guthrie gets the ball for the season opener Friday in Houston. He'll be followed by Moyer and righties Juan Nicasio and Jhoulys Chacin -- who will start the home opener on April 9 against San Francisco.

Because of an off day on April 10, the Rockies will hold Pomeranz out until April 15. The club optioned Pomeranz to Triple-A Colorado Springs on Friday.

Pomeranz, who was acquired last season from the Indians in the Ubaldo Jimenez trade, will still throw on April 10, but the location is to be determined.

"We can get his work in on the 10th, and then he'll rejoin the club," Tracy said. "He'll leave the club on the 9th to pitch on the 10th and then after he pitches, he'll rejoin the club to do his work with us in preparation for his start."

Tracy announced his decision to go with Guthrie last week, and he praised Guthrie's strike-throwing ability again on Friday. Guthrie's efficiency combined with Nicasio's velocity made Tracy comfortable putting Moyer, a crafty lefty with questions about his durability, between them in the rotation.

As for Nicasio, Tracy had nothing but good things to say about the righty, who hit 97 mph on the radar gun Thursday. More importantly, Tracy said, has been the development of his changeup and slider.

"He has shown us better secondary stuff with some of the starts he's taken this spring," Tracy said. "Now, if that continues to play itself out, how much better can this kid get as we go along?"

Chacin, who started for Colorado on Friday, earned the No. 4 spot and a date with the Giants in the Coors Field opener.

Guillermo Moscoso, who was beaten out by Moyer for a rotation spot, was also optioned to Triple-A before the game. Tyler Chatwood and Alex White remained on the big league roster, likely in competition for a bullpen spot.

Catcher Wilkin Castillo and outfielder Andrew Brown, neither of whom are on the club's 40-man roster, were reassigned.