Left-hander Christian Friedrich went five innings for Triple-A Colorado Springs, giving up two runs in five innings, a serviceable start but not much more. Friedrich has now made four starts on the season.
The good? There's many. A 2.59 ERA, 21 strikeouts in 24 1/3 innings, only one home run, four walks and 16 hits allowed. Definitely a lot of positives. Friedrich has been a very pleasant surprise. He looks like a completely new man after two down seasons at Double-A Tulsa.
So any concerns? Yes. Friedrich has had two outstanding starts of one combined earned run allowed in 14 1/3 innings and two average ones (combined 5.40 ERA).
Focusing on his progress, Friedrich bears closer attention. I had come to the conclusion after last season he was going to be a reliever and spot starter but maybe there was more life and development in Friedrich.
|Christian Bergman excelling again in 2012|
Batters are hitting but .207 against him, he hasn't allowed a home run in 32 innings and although he will turn 24 in early May, he's looking like he is in line for a Double-A call-up later this season.
Asheville right-handed starter Chris Jensen, a Rockies top-10 pitching prospect entering the season, threw six innings of one-run ball. His ERA is now 3.76 and like Friedrich, he flashes impressive starts around rough outings. Consistency is called for but the talent is there.
These three pitchers, in addition to Alex White at Triple-A and Double-A star Edwar Cabrera give the Rockies talent, depth and hope for internal solutions to their pitching needs.