Thursday, August 6, 2009
GM: Happ to remain in rotation
PHILADELPHIA -- J.A. Happ isn't going to the bullpen to make room for Pedro Martinez.
"Happ's not going anywhere," general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. said Thursday. "He deserves to stay in the rotation. He's pitched very well. He's probably been our most effective starter."
Happ tossed a four-hitter against the Colorado Rockies and struck out 10 for his second career shutout Wednesday night. The rookie left-hander is 8-2 with a 2.74 ERA in 26 games. He's 6-2 with a 2.80 ERA in 14 games as a starter. Happ began the season in the bullpen before replacing an ineffective Chan Ho Park.
"We still haven't made a decision, but it's not out of the realm of possibility that six guys could pitch in our rotation," Amaro said.
If not, who might go?
Reigning AL Cy Young Award winner Cliff Lee, World Series MVP Cole Hamels and Joe Blanton have the first three spots locked up. That leaves 46-year-old Jamie Moyer as the odd man out.
Moyer leads the staff with 10 wins but has a 5.55 ERA. The Phillies, however, have insisted Moyer isn't suited for the bullpen. Moyer signed a $13 million, two-year contract last December after helping the Phillies win the World Series.
It's uncertain when Martinez will join the Phillies. The three-time Cy Young Award winner struck out 11 in six innings in a rehab start at Double-A Reading on Wednesday. Martinez has made three rehab starts since signing a one-year contract last month and proclaimed himself ready to go.
"I think he can get major league hitters out with his stuff," Amaro said. "I know it was a Double-A club, but when you have no walks and 11 punchouts, that's good in Little League."