Milwaukee Brewers right-handed pitcher Tyler Thornburg is playing out of his mind since he was called up on June 5. The Brewers did not know what to expect since he was underperforming in the Triple-A. However, it is clear that Thornburg deserves a spot in Milwaukee’s starting rotation next season after his stellar effort.
The 24-year-old has posted a 2-1 record with an impressive 1.47 earned run average, 34 strikeouts and a .228 opponent’s batting average in seven starts. His ERA and opponent’s batting average are the best on the team among starting pitchers. Overall, he is 3-1 with a 2.03 ERA and 48 strikeouts in 18 appearances.
Obviously, Milwaukee will have an open competition for their starting rotation in Spring Training. Several players did not get the job done in 2013, which means there needs to be some changes in 2014. Every single position will be evaluated with very few players considered safe for next year. Thornburg will get a shot to be a starter in the spring, but whether the Brewers actually give him a spot in the rotation will remain to be unseen until next year.
It would be foolish of the organization to declare Thornburg a starter for next season right now because nobody knows what the future holds. Milwaukee could make some trades or sign a starting pitcher in free agency, although it is highly unlikely. With that being said, it is a well-known fact that Thornburg, along with Kyle Lohse, Yovani Gallardo and Wily Peralta, should expect a spot among the starting five.
The way I see it, the only way Thornburg does not appear in the starting rotation is if he pulls a Mark Rogers. The 27-year-old had a backend rotation spot all wrapped up heading into this season, but a complete meltdown on the mound in Spring Training forced the Brewers to keep him in the minors all year.