Taylor Buchholz: How can moving to the pen be moving up? With more outings like yesterday's stellar two inning, two K job with plenty of movement and deception on his pitches, Buchholz seems to have what it takes to get the attention of Hurdle and company, and to squeeze himself into the late inning, high leverage picture should something happen to Brian Fuentes. I'm not convinced that having LaTroy Hawkins as set-up man is a bad thing, but I'm pretty certain having him as closer could be. One better option for a replacement emerging in Buchholz has to be cause for celebration.
Troy Tulowitzki: He went one for three with a single, strikeout and key GIDP in a pretty big clutch situation, but just seeing him back in the starting lineup after Saturday's scare was great news.
Jeff Francis: Nobody seems to be stepping up and making a statement saying:
"I am your opening day starter. Grrr,"
which is unfortunate, as we kind of need one of those. Rodrigo Lopez gets another crack at it today, but right now it seems to be heading towards Aaron Cook as a kind of lukewarm ace. Francis settled down after a very rough first. More performances like his last three and two thirds innings would be nice, particularly if he can do something about that 2-9 GB-FB split.
Others of Note: John Mabry got a big double and some good press this morning, while Alex Gomez and Ryan Spilborghs sat on the bench enhancing his prospects for that last spot on the roster. I'm not sure what's happening with Cory Sullivan right now, Cory went zero for two yesterday, but his name hasn't popped up in trade rumors anywhere yet. Erick Almonte looks like he might be Todd Helton's emergency back-up before Joe Koshansky for right now, as his bat seems much more ready for primetime. He went one for two yesterday with a run scored, but he also had a throwing error.