Interim Diamondbacks manager Al Pedrique is on the verge of making his first adjustment to the pitching rotation, as Arizona’s starter for Thursday at San Francisco is to be determined.
That would be Andrew Good’s turn in the rotation, but he appears headed back to a bullpen role. Pedrique said the “first option” for the assignment is Elmer Dessens, the former No. 3 starter banished to the bullpen in May.
In his last eight relief appearances — most recently, 3 2/3 scoreless innings against the Twins on Saturday — he is 0-1 with a 1.42 ERA.
“I would say that he is our first option,” Pedrique said. “I liked the way he pitched aggressively, getting ahead in the count. And his body language on the mound showed me he is a lot more confident out there.”
Good, meanwhile, said he is having numbness in his right hand stemming from elbow surgery he underwent in the offseason. He wore a brace on the hand after Sunday’s game.
However, Good does not think that led to his struggles in Saturday’s start, when he allowed three home runs in 2 1/3 innings.
“I just didn’t feel like I had that extra pop I usually have,” Good said.
In other news:
Catcher Robby Hammock is scheduled to undergo an MRI exam on his surgically repaired left knee at the All-Star break.
“Hopefully, it will put his mind at ease,” trainer Paul Lessard said.
Reliever Oscar Villarreal (right flexor strain) had another encouraging bullpen session on Sunday. He will have at least one more bullpen before pitching batting practice.
Catcher Brent Mayne (back strain) starts a rehabilitation assignment as Class AAA Tucson today.
After 463 managerial wins in the minor leagues, Pedrique on Sunday got his first win in a stadium with an upper deck.
After the final out against Minnesota, he got a hug from Arizona hitting coach Rick Schu, then got the baseball from Randy Johnson, who threw a complete game.
“It meant a lot,” Pedrique said. “For a future Hall-of-Famer to remember that it was my first victory and give me the ball, it was great. He is a true professional.”
Sunday was the day of Steve Sparks’ regular between-starts side session, so Pedrique had the knuckleballer available out of the bullpen if Johnson got into early trouble. Sparks could be on call on future side-session days, the manager said.
“That might be something we do any time we’ve used the bullpen a lot,” Pedrique said. “If his health’s OK, Sparky is the best guy to do that.”
For Arizona, Saturday has become a day to not even get out of bed.
The D-Backs’ loss to Minnesota two days ago was their ninth straight on Saturday. They are 1-12 on that day this season, with the lone victory at Philadelphia on May 1.