Phillies Notes: Pettibone likely to start Saturday

Phillies pitcher Jonathan Pettibone pitched for the Lehigh Valley IronPigs in a rehab game on April 1, 2014. (Ron Tarver/Staff Photographer)
Phillies pitcher Jonathan Pettibone pitched for the Lehigh Valley IronPigs in a rehab game on April 1, 2014. (Ron Tarver/Staff Photographer)
Posted: April 11, 2014

Ryne Sandberg said he knows who will start Saturday for the Phillies, but he was not ready to reveal the decision Wednesday. All signs, nonetheless, point to Jonathan Pettibone's earning the promotion.

David Buchanan was eliminated from contention when he threw 93 pitches Tuesday for triple-A Lehigh Valley. He would have to start Saturday on short rest, and Sandberg said that is not an option. The other possibility is Jeff Manship, who is the long man in the Phillies bullpen.

But Manship threw 13 pitches in a scoreless inning of relief Wednesday.

"He's a luxury right now in the bullpen with two or three innings as a possibility," Sandberg said. "He's a length guy. He's that guy in our bullpen right now."

Pettibone's regular turn is Saturday. The 23-year-old righthander was inactive for much of spring training because of a recurrence of shoulder pain. He pitched five innings and allowed three runs in his first start for Lehigh Valley.

The Phillies could need a rotation replacement for just two starts - Saturday against Miami and April 17 against Atlanta. Cole Hamels could slide into that spot April 22 in Los Angeles.

Pettibone made 18 starts for the Phillies in 2013 and posted a 4.04 ERA. He is on the 40-man roster, which is full.

Lincoln falls

If Pettibone is recalled, the Phillies will have to demote a relief pitcher. Brad Lincoln had pitched just twice in the team's first seven games and appears to be low on the depth chart. (His only two appearances came with the Phillies facing large deficits.) He allowed three runs in mop-up duty Tuesday.

Lincoln does not have options remaining, so he must clear waivers before he is sent to the minors. The Phillies traded catcher Erik Kratz and minor-league reliever Rob Rasmussen to Toronto for Lincoln in December.

Because of that, Lincoln came to camp with a guaranteed job. He bounced between the majors and minors last season.

Righthanders B.J. Rosenberg and Justin De Fratus each have options left, but Sandberg has trusted them in more important situations so far. Manship is also out of options.

Extra bases

Cody Asche did not start after committing an error and misplaying a few other balls Tuesday. Sandberg said he suffered a minor hamstring injury but should play Thursday. He spent time with four coaches before Wednesday's game on extra infield work. . . . Seth Rosin, a righthanded pitcher the Phillies lost in last winter's Rule 5 draft, was designated for assignment by Texas. If he clears waivers, the Rangers must offer him back to the Phillies for $25,000. Rosin, 25, pitched three scoreless innings against the Phillies last week and earned his first major-league win last Wednesday.

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