The Rockies got healthier in a hurry Wednesday.
Right-handed starter Tyler Chatwood, after just one rehabilation start, is back in the rotation and will start Saturday night’s game against Arizona. That gives Colorado a six-man rotation, at least for the short term.
More surprising is the quick return of first baseman Mark Reynolds. He came off the disabled list Wednesday just 16 days after undergoing surgery to remove a fractured hook of the hamate bone in his left hand.
Also on Wednesday the Rockies placed infielder Daniel Descalso on the paternity list.
Reynolds will be available to play in Wednesday’s split double header against the Dodgers at Coors Field. Rockies manager Walt Weiss made it clear, however, that Reynolds will be a limited participant for now.
“It’s not like I’m going to be running him out there every day,” Reynolds said. “He’s just starting to take batting practice. But it’s another body we can use. He can take an at-bat and he can certainly play defense. But I look at it as him playing (on a) limited basis.”
Reynolds, entering the final weeks of his one-year contract with Colorado, is hitting 283 with 57 runs, 23 doubles, 12 home runs, 50 RBIs and 38 walks in 106 games.
Chatwood, slowed by mid-back spasms, is coming off the disabled list for the second time this season. He made one rehab start for Double-A Hartford (Conn.) on Monday night, pitching 4 ⅓ innings, giving up two runs with one walk and three strikeouts. He threw 73 pitches, 40 for strikes.
“The plan was for me to make just one rehab start,” said Chatwood, who’s 10-8 with a 3.75 ERA in 22 starts. “I think it went well. I feel good and I didn’t miss that much time.”
Chatwood, who’s come back strong this season from his second Tommy John surgery, said he was never concerned that the back injury could become a chronic issue. He missed two starts in late June because of the injury and has missed three starts this time.
“I wasn’t that worried, I figured it was something all in my muscles … it was just spasms,” he said. “But it’s hard to go out there and pitch when you are focused on the back instead of making pitches and getting outs. But I didn’t ever think it was going to be chronic.”
Chatwood said his goal for the rest of the season “is to just to get back to where I was before I got injured.”
“That’s been the frustrating part, to break up my season, so now I just want to get back to where I was before I got injured,” he said. “When my back was hurt, I had trouble finishing pitches and wasn’t getting down in the zone. I was leaving too many pitches over the plate.”
Weiss said the rotation is flexible right now.
“We can alter the thing at any time, but it is going to be six (pitchers) for a cycle,” he said. “But there are going to be other factors involved. We are trying to protect certain guys — innings-wise.”
Also, the Rockies will add right-handed reliever Christian Bergman to their 25-man roster for the second game of Wednesday’s double header. Major-league rules allow clubs to go with 26 players in the second game of a split double header.