Doubts about pitching on rise after weekend

April 9, 2012

Going into spring training, the Padres had doubts about their starting pitching.

Mat Latos and Aaron Harang departed over the winter, and right-hander Dustin Moseley and left-hander Clayton Richard would be returning from season-ending surgeries performed last summer, although Moseley's operation was to his non-pitching shoulder.

The team's hopes rose during spring training, as the five projected starters right-hander Tim Stauffer, lefty-hander Cory Luebke, right-hander Edinson Volquez, Moseley and Richard made every start without a hitch.

However, things have suddenly unraveled.

In a span of a week, the Padres lost two-fifths of their rotation to the 15-day disabled list.

First, the presumptive season-opening starter, Stauffer, was shut down the final days of spring training and ultimately lost to the disabled list on Opening Day with an elbow strain. An MRI showed no ligament damage.

Then, Moseley suffered a right shoulder strain Saturday while pitching against the Dodgers.

The Padres are now scrambling to fill out, given the club's offense, their expected area of strength.

Right-hander Anthony Bass, who opened the season in the bullpen, will fill one of the two slots either April 12 or 14. The other spot will likely go to either Casey Kelly or Joe Wieland, both of whom are with Class AAA Tucson. Both are right-handers currently not on the 40-man roster, so the promotion will necessitate another move.