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Saturday, April 3, 2010
No. 5 Starter Watch: Athletics still thinking

Count the A's among those teams that just have too many starting pitchers with a claim on the rotation. Or maybe not; we'll check back in a few months. Anyway, the Athletics are back in the chilly Bay Area, and yet the battle for the No. 5 slot still rages. Chace Bryson:

Tough choice, as neither of them have been close to acceptable as major leaguers.

Cahill's HR/9 last season was higher than his strikeout-to-walk ratio, which is 1) really hard to do, and 2) even if you could do it, you really wouldn't want to.

Gonzalez showed the big arm he's always had, but also walked five hitters per nine innings. Which, again, is really not good.

I'd be inclined to give the job to Cahill, if only because a) he struck out a lot more hitters in Triple-A (though, granted, he walked a lot more, too), and b) Gonzalez obviously needs to fix one thing, and his performance this spring doesn't suggest that he's fixed it.

This is one of those spring-training "battles" that will probably be forgotten within a month or two. Given the injury histories of Dallas Braden, Ben Sheets, and Justin Duchscherer -- plus the youth of Brett Anderson and whoever gets the No. 5 spot next week -- there should be plenty of work to go around. Last year, 10 different Athletics started more than five games. (What? You've already forgotten Clayton Mortensen?)