JUPITER, Fla. -- Last year at this time Mike Matheny was announcing Shelby Miller as the team's 5th starter despite the fact his competition, Joe Kelly, had a better spring statistically.
Now Carlos Martinez knows Kelly felt.
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Despite having a significantly higher ERA (Kelly's 6.28 compared to Martinez's 1.76) in spring training, it's Kelly who wins the job in 2014.
"I'm excited to be a starter," Kelly said. "I'm ready to go. I'm going to go out there and compete every single day and try to do my best to help the team win."
But the 25-year old knows his work has just begun. He can't afford to struggle during the season. This announcement just means he gets the first crack at starting.
"The same guys who start the season (in the rotation) are rarely the same guys who end the season (there because of) injuries, not pitching well, everything. We have a lot of talent. I have to go out there and perform every single start," Kelly said.
Adam Wainwright will pitch Opening Day on March 31st against the Reds. Kelly said he will pitch the 5th game of the season. That will be April 5th in Pittsburgh.