Game Preview: Yohan Flande makes his major league debut

Doug Pensinger

First Eddie Butler, then Tyler Matzek, then Christian Friedrich, and now Yohan Flande. These pitching debuts are getting less and exciting.

Today Tyler Chatwood, err Jordan Lyles, uhh Christian Bergman, oh Yohan Flande will take the mound for the Rockies. It's getting difficult to keep this rotation straight.

Yes, Yohan Flande! The 28-year-old career minor leaguer (993.1 innings over nine seasons) who owns a 4.42 ERA for the Sky Sox in 2014 will become the 12th different starter for the Rockies this season, and he's really no. 13 on the depth chart because there's no way Dan Winkler would still be in Double-A if his season wasn't derailed by Tommy John surgery.

The lefty is pretty much your definition of Triple-A filler. He doesn't strike out many, walks his fair share (but nothing outrageous), and is extremely hittable as indicated by his 9.8 hits allowed per nine innings in 487 Triple-A innings. The exceptions should be low against an experienced St. Louis lineup.

This is where Jorge De La Rosa's seven innings last night become important. Even though he gave up five runs, he limited the number of innings the bullpen had to pick up, and if the Rockies are going to win this game, they're probably going to need some zeros from that branch of the pitching staff.

On the flip side, the Cardinals are also calling up a pitcher to make his major league debut. Marco Gonzales, who the Rockies actually picked but didn't sign in the 29th round of the 2010 draft, will start for the Cardinals. In terms of experience, this is very much a Drew Pomeranz (when he was called up) situation. The Cardinals took Gonzales with their first round pick in last year's draft, and after just 38.1 innings in Double-A, they're calling him up because of injuries in their rotation. This seems exactly like the type of move the Rockies get criticized for, but since this is the all knowing when it comes to pitching development Cardinals, we'll refrain from the same level of criticism.

Lineup wise, the Rockies have Corey Dickerson batting sixth today, which seems pretty foolish considering he has a 1.081 OPS. Overall though, this is a strong line up with lefty mashing Drew Stubbs batting second and Josh Rutledge making the start a third base. Wilin Rosario, who has nine hits in his last four games, will bat fifth.

The Rockies better hope it leads to a bunch of runs, because once again, the offense is going to have to carry the load.

Today's Lineups

Matt Carpenter - 3B C. Blackmon - RF
Matt Holliday - LF Drew Stubbs - CF
Matt Adams - 1B Troy Tulowitzki - SS
Jhonny Peralta - SS Justin Morneau - 1B
Yadier Molina - C Wilin Rosario - C
Allen Craig - RF Corey Dickerson - LF
Peter Bourjos - CF Josh Rutledge - 3B
Mark Ellis - 2B DJ LeMahieu - 2B
Marco Gonzales - LHP Yohan Flande - LHP
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