Barry M. Bloom, of Diamondbacks.MLB.com, reports the Arizona Diamondbacks have moved pitcher Max Scherzer into their rotation. Scherzer will remain in the rotation until further notice. He will make his first start Monday, May 5, against the Philadelphia Phillies.
Scherzer is considered one of the team's top pitching prospects. He started four games for Triple-A Tucson this season, posting a 0-0 record and a 1.17 ERA. He struck out 38 batters and walked only three batters in 23 innings. He held opposing batters to a .146 batting average. Scherzer made a sparkling debut in relief April 29, pitching 4 1/3 perfect innings while striking out seven batters.
Last season, Scherzer pitched for Single-A Visalia and Double-A Mobile. He went 2-0 with a 0.57 ERA in three starts for Visalia with 30 strikeouts and two walks in 17 innings. He did find it a bit tougher at Double-A, going 4-4 with a 3.91 ERA in 14 starts. The right-hander struck out 76 batters and walked 40 batters in 73 2/3 innings.
Scherzer is taking the place of pitcher Edgar Gonzalez, who had previously taken starting pitcher Doug Davis' spot in the rotation since Davis is on the 15-day disabled list because he is receiving treatment for thyroid cancer. Davis has been out for a few weeks because of surgery and various therapies, but he has targeted Friday, May 9, as his return date. Scherzer has better long-term value than Davis, so if Scherzer excels in his starting role, he could stay in the rotation and force the team to make a decision on Davis.
Scherzer is a tremendous young pitcher that should be picked up in all deeper leagues because he has a high ceiling. In shallower leagues, owners should try to find room for him on their roster. He would be a great pickup regardless of his future rotation status because of his exceptional strikeout totals in the minor leagues.
About Tim Piotrowski
Piotrowski has been a Hot Off the Wire analyst since 2007.
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