Let the “San Diego Starting Rotation Shuffle” begin!
On Saturday night, Clayton Richard was scratched from his start in San Francisco due to an illness, and jack-of-all-trades starter/setup man Andrew Cashner had to fill in for him. To his credit, Cashner went 4.0 innings on short notice, struck out 5, and only gave up one mistake-pitch to Pablo Sandoval which resulted in the only 2 runs of the game.
Although Richard will likely return from his flu to make his next start, the same cannot be said for the 5th starter in San Diego’s rotation, Tyson Ross. Last week, I think we all remember how Ross sustained a left shoulder injury when he recorded his first big league hit. As much of an “NL Guy” as I am, it’s injuries like that which have made me progressively want to see the “DH Rule” in place in both leagues. But that’s another article entirely.
What made the injury even more unfortunate was because Ross appeared to be in line to notch his first victory on the 2013 campaign with the Friars. For now though, Tyson will be on the 15-Day Disabled List as he nurses his non-throwing shoulder, and it appears that Cashner is San Diego’s most logical choice to round out the back end of their starting rotation.
With Ross now sidelined, it will be interesting to see if the Friars use Andrew in a full-time starting role. I know that would definitely make sense for the team to do so, especially because it will give Cashner the extended chance to shine he failed to receive last year due to his injuries.
Last season, Casher did his best to fill in when injuries tore through the Padres’ starting staff last summer. To his credit, the fire-baller did an adequate job in his five starts during the 2012 season (0-1, 5.12 ERA, 23 to 3 strikeout to walk ratio). Unfortunately, a lat injury cut Cashner’s season short in July, and then he was shelved in September due to the same ailment.
With Casey Kelly, Joe Wieland, and Cory Luebke sidelined and/or rehabbing from with elbow injuries, the next two months could provide Cashner te perfect opportunity to “stick and stay” in the Friars’ starting rotation. Now that his lat issue and winter thumb injury are behind him, Bud Black might be wise to see what Cashner can do with some extended chances to shine until Ross returns.