GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Rookie left-handed pitcher Drew Pomeranz, named the fifth starter in the rotation, showed Saturday that he'll be ready whenever the Rockies need him.
The Rockies will not need him until April 15 against the D-backs at Coors Field. If he pitches the way he did Saturday -- when he held the White Sox scoreless for six innings on four hits in the Rockies' 3-1 victory -- he'll be worth the wait.
It was a mechanically-sound outing for Pomeranz, who struggled with consistency in his previous outing, against the Angels. Pomeranz had not pitched in a Cactus League game for 13 days because of a right glute strain, and when he took the mound, he was spinning too far away from home plate during his windup. Some quick pointers from his bullpen catcher before Saturday's game corrected the problem.
He dominated Saturday -- using all his pitches, including a curve that buckled the knees of White Sox leadoff hitter Alejandro De Aza -- despite the fact the injury has not fully healed.
"It was a little tight, but obviously nothing that was affecting me," Pomeranz said. "I was just trying to get ahead of hitters."
Rockies manager Jim Tracy said Pomeranz's fastball was moving at 93-94 mph, with "movement in the hitting area."
Pomeranz, 23, obtained last year from the Indians as part of the trade for former ace Ubaldo Jimenez, will pitch in the final Cactus League game against the Mariners on Wednesday. He will pitch in a Minor League game on April 10 wherever the weather is best. His entire time outside of the rotation, however, will be spent with the Rockies doing his between-starts program.
Not only will Pomeranz not throw in a Major League game for a few days, but he'll likely be skipped at several points. The Rockies want to limit his innings, although they have not announced a specific number. Last year, his first season of pro ball after the Indians drafted him in the first round out of Ole Miss in 2010, he threw a total of 119 1/3 innings, including 18 1/3 with the Rockies (2-1, 5.40 ERA).
"I want to pitch, no getting around that," Pomeranz said. "But I think they've got a plan to try to limit my innings this year. This is one of the ways for me to be able to pitch if we make the playoffs. I don't want to use them up and feel like they need to set me down when I need to pitch."