Colorado Rockies: Who Takes The Rotation Spot of Chad Bettis?
There are two things that stand out about Chris Rusin in the battle for a rotation spot.
First, the 30-year-old Rusin is the elder statesman of the group.
Second, he has 49 career starts under his belt, by far the highest number of any of his competitors.
Those are the positives. However, there are some negatives that must be examined here as well.
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Rusin is currently nursing an injury and Bud Black has said there’s no real timetable for him to be back to a normal throwing routine.
“He’s getting better,” Black recently told Rox Pile. “We’ll start progressing him with some stuff in the weight room but he’s still a couple of weeks away from games.”
With Rusin still a couple of weeks away from game action, that will cut the time short before the start of the season. Can Rusin recover quickly enough to find his edge in limited spring training innings?
Also, there’s the fact that Rusin struggled last season as a starter yet was solid coming out of the bullpen. In seven starts, the southpaw went 1-4 with a 5.08 ERA. In 22 relief appearances, Rusin posted a 2-1 mark and 2.58 ERA. It’s a noticeable difference and one to keep in mind in this discussion.
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Last season, Rusin bounced back and forth between jobs. Under Black, it appears that Rusin will compete for a starting job while Jordan Lyles holds down the long reliever role. It could help settle Rusin into a better routine which could benefit his performance.