Spring training position battles
A daily rundown of the MLB competitions for playing time in March and April
Cincinnati Reds: Fifth starter
Another strong outing for Chapman: Are the Reds merely postponing the inevitable by not proclaiming Aroldis Chapman as their fifth starter? In his third outing and first start of the spring, Chapman allowed one run and struck out five over three innings in the Reds' 5-2 loss to the Brewers on Wednesday.
Outside the organization, it looks like a no-brainer. "He's their best pitcher," a National League scout told the Cincinnati Enquirer. "How can they think about starting him in the minors?"
The competition for the final rotation spot was reduced by one when Mike Lincoln was sent to the bullpen, leaving Micah Owings, Travis Wood, Justin Lehr and Matt Maloney. Like Chapman, Wood and 2009 first-round pick Mike Leake also are having strong springs.
"We're starting to narrow it down," manager Dusty Baker said via MLB.com. "We're going back to have some meetings and try and determine who is who."
To see more position battles -- including analysis on the Buster Posey experiment -- you must be an ESPN Insider.
MORE MLB HEADLINES
- Sources: White Sox snag LaRoche for $25M
- Report: Red Sox offer Sandoval 5 for $95M
- Ibanez among 3 finalists for Rays manager
- Dodgers go to familiar well, get Rays' Peralta
MOST SENT STORIES ON ESPN.COM
2010 Position Battles
Need to know the latest on MLB position battles? Insider has you covered. Check here every day for updates.