Rockies set to give spring standout Peter Lambert his first start

Feb 16, 2019; Salt River Fields, AZ, USA; Colorado Rockies manager Bud Black talks with pitcher Peter Lambert (78) in the bullpen during spring training at Salt River Fields. Mandatory Credit: Rick Scuteri-USA TODAY Sports

Originally rumored by MLB.com’s Thomas Harding and later confirmed by the Denver Post, the Colorado Rockies are set to give Peter Lambert his first shot.

Though the club has not officially announced the move, Lambert has already flown into Chicago from Triple-A Albuquerque. The youngster figures to start the final game of a three-game set with the Cubs.

For the Isotopes, Lambert has started 11 games this year and pitched to a 5.07 earned run average. In his last minor league start before his impending promotion, the youngster went six innings against Triple-A Reno and allowed four earned runs. He also struck out six and walked one.

Per MLB.com’s prospect rankings, Lambert is the franchise’s fourth-best prospect and leading hurler in their system. He would be the third-youngest starter to make his major league debut in franchise history at only 22 years old, per Elias.

In the spring, Lambert burst onto the scene for the Rockies. In 13.1 innings, he allowed five earned runs and looked to be on the fringes of making the Opening Day roster. After his demotion, he battled through early scuffles and has put things together in recent outings.

Lambert’s chance to join the Rockies comes on the heels of last week’s demotion of Kyle Freeland to Albuquerque. After constant struggles and a bloated 7.13 ERA to start the year, last year’s National League Cy Young contender was sent away.

Both Tyler Anderson and Chad Bettis also struggled early in the year, causing the former to undergo knee surgery and the latter to head to the bullpen. With limited options, the club’s hand has been forced to a degree to bring their top prospect to the majors.

Among the shuffling, the Rockies will also bump Jon Gray’s start to Saturday in an effort to cure his finger ailment:

To make room for Lambert, Mike Dunn was placed on the 10-day injured list with left shoulder inflammation. Harrison Musgrave was also transferred to the 60-day IL with a left flexor tendon strain.

According to the Athletic’s Nick Groke, Wade Davis is also inching closer to a return to the club, likely resulting in the demotion of Jairo Diaz:

The final news of the day came by way of Charlie Blackmon’s injury. On the 10-day injured list due to a strained right calf, the outfielder is headed to Albuquerque to start his rehab stint, with a return in the near future. In his stead, Raimel Tapia has handled leadoff duties, with David Dahl taking over in right field.

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