D-backs’ Torey Lovullo to handle rotation spot dilemma when, if it arises

Apr 15, 2023, 7:23 PM

Drey Jameson #99 of the Arizona Diamondbacks delivers a first inning pitch against the Milwaukee Br...

Drey Jameson #99 of the Arizona Diamondbacks delivers a first inning pitch against the Milwaukee Brewers at Chase Field on April 12, 2023 in Phoenix, Arizona. (Photo by Norm Hall/Getty Images)

(Photo by Norm Hall/Getty Images)

Drey Jameson has impacted four victories on the mound for the Arizona Diamondbacks this season with three in the bullpen and one start.

His scoreless four-inning outing on Wednesday against the Milwaukee Brewers spearheaded a 7-3 victory after he took over for the injured Zach Davies (oblique) in the starting rotation.

“We knew quickly that this buildup would happen, he’s gonna be extended from (54 pitches) … up to 75 in his next start, and the next thing you know he’s gonna be fully loaded,” D-backs manager Torey Lovullo told Arizona Sports’ Burns & Gambo on Friday.

“He’s gonna be healthy and strong and firing fastballs for the rest of the year.”

Davies is on the 15-day injured list and is expected to miss multiple weeks, so what happens to the rotation when he comes back?

Lovullo does not want to get too far ahead of himself, focused on the day-to-day.

“It’s hard to predict that far in the future. I ask these guys to stay in the moment, be preset today,” Lovullo said.

“[I’m] unable to predict what could happen, knock on wood that we don’t have any more injuries but that may be a possibility. You cannot get enough starting pitching … we love the depth, we want to get Zach heathy, when we get there, we’ll cross that bridge.”

Arizona is three cycles through the starting rotation after Saturday, the most recent producing the strongest performances.

Four of five starters allowed four earned runs in 23 combined innings this past go around, excluding Madison Bumgarner’s five runs allowed in five innings on Friday — which all came in one inning.

Zac Gallen pitched a shutout seven-inning gem on Monday, Merrill Kelly tossed six hitless frames before a tough seventh inning on Tuesday and rookie Ryne Nelson threw six frames of one-run ball on Saturday.

Arizona’s starters were fifth in the National League in ERA over the last five games at 3.27.

The D-backs held a competition in spring training between its young arms for the final rotation spot. Nelson grabbed the role and Jameson entered the bullpen for the interim.

If everything goes to plan over the next several weeks, the D-backs will have quite the decision to make once again, this time with a less clear placement for whomever ends up on the outside looking in.

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