2014 Rockies spring training game No. 6: Juan Nicasio vs. Madison Bumgarner

Justin Edmonds

It's possible that Spring Training means more to Juan Nicasio than anyone else on the roster. No pressure.

It's never too early in the season or too fake of a baseball game to start hating the San Francisco Giants. While today's game is -- to borrow from another sport -- a "friendly" it is also a chance t take inventory of the potential weaknesses and flaws of a Nemesis.

Rockies fans may notice a friendly (or at least familiar) face batting fifth and playing right field for the bad guys! It's our old pal Tyler Colvin! Hopefully he is exactly as good for them as he was for us, otherwise he goes on the list that includes Marco Scutaro and Andrew Iguodala. Stupid bay area. Anyway...

As touched upon in the Rockpile this morning, the Dodgers appear to be the team to beat that no one expects to beat. So that makes the Giants (and the rest of the NL West) enemy number one for the Rockies road to success in 2014. Juan Nicasio takes the hill for the Rox in an attempt to outperform his contemporaries and win the fifth rotation spot.

Madison Bumgarner is on the bump for the Giants and should represent a nice challenge for our hitters to gauge themselves on.

How Nicasio pitches early in the season (including today) could go a long way toward determining his role on the team or his value as an asset. Nicasio is in pole position, it's his job to lose.

If Juan Nicasio can be more than just average, starting right now, he could solidify one of the best rotations the Rockies have ever had and keep everyone below him (Lyles, Gray, and Butler especially) on a more favorable timeline to reach the majors while getting the most out of their development.

It's possible that Spring Training means more to Juan Nicasio than anyone else on the roster. No pressure.

By the end of this season he could be the nationally known feel-good story of the summer or not on this roster. Go get 'em.

Juan Nicasio vs. Madison Bumgarner (1:10) Gameday link


Lineups


1. DJ LeMahieu 2B 1. Angel Pagan (S) CF
2. Brandon Barnes LF 2. Juan Perez LF
3. Nolan Arenado 3B 3. Brandon Belt (L) 1B
4. Wilin Rosario C 4. Buster Posey C
5. Matt McBride 1B 5. Tyler Colvin (L) RF
6. Kent Matthes RF 6. Tony Abreu (S) DH
7. Charlie Blackmon (L) CF 7. Adam Duvall 3B
8. Tom Murphy DH 8. Nick Noonan (L) 2B
9. Paul Janish SS 9. Ehire Adrianza (S) SS

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