Wacha, Garcia back on the mound 4 days before games begin
PHOENIX, AZ - SEPTEMBER 26: Michael Wacha #52 of the St Louis Cardinals delivers a first inning pitch against the Arizona Diamondbacks at Chase Field on September 26, 2014 in Phoenix, Arizona. (Photo by Norm Hall/Getty Images) By Norm Hall
JUPITER, Fla. (KMOV) -- Now that the calendar has flipped to March that means Grapefruit League play is set to begin shortly. Indeed, the first game on the schedule is this Thursday "at" the Miami Marlins - who, of course, share the Roger Dean Stadium complex with the Cardinals.
Starters for those games have neither been decided nor announced. Historically, someone in the running for the rotation but not necessarily a favorite has drawn that assignment. Last year it was Carlos Martinez. The year before it was Trevor Rosenthal.
The smart money is on someone like Marco Gonzales for Thursday's tilt against the Marlins but, again, nothing has been decided nor announced.
Today in camp live pitchers practice (formerly known as live BP) resumes after taking the last couple days off. Both Michael Wacha and Jaime Garcia are on the schedule to throw. These are two of the biggest story lines in spring training as they work their way back from injuries which interrupted their 2014 seasons.
Wacha and Garcia have both been on the mound here in Jupiter so far and reports have been they both feel extremely strong and healthy at this point. That's all well and good, of course, but the biggest test of all isn't in March. It's going to come in the regular season and how they both respond to the rigors of throwing 100 pitches every five days.
Major League pitchers Seth Maness, Matt Belisle, Randy Choate and Kevin Siegrist are also on the docket to throw along with minor leaguers Tim Cooney, John Gast, Zack Petrick, Mike Mayers and NIck Greenwood.