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Collmenter aims to stay in rotation

PHOENIX -- Josh Collmenter is back in the starting rotation and he intends to stay there.

"I take it in stride and I'll do whatever I can with the team to help out," Collmenter said. "It's obviously nice to come back to the rotation. It's something not a whole lot of guys get to do once they are sent to the bullpen. To be able to go back and forth really helps out."

Collmenter, who has not started a game for the D-backs since 2012, will make his season debut as starter against the Mets on Monday. He's allowed two runs in eight innings during four appearances out of the bullpen this season.

"I've done it plenty of times so it's not a big deal," Collmenter said. "Preparation is pretty much the exact same. Any time I go out there I usually get to throw multiple innings. Now, I just know the exact day I'm going to pitch. It's really the only thing that changes."

Collmenter made 11 starts for the D-backs in 2012 but his best year as a starter came in 2011 when he went 10-10 with a 3.38 ERA in 24 starts. He has relied heavily on his fastball and changeup but might have to incorporate his curveball more to keep hitters off balance.

He threw four innings of relief against the Giants in his last outing to help prepare him for the shift. He expects to throw 90 pitches Monday.

"Everything is pretty much scripted [as a starter] and you know exactly when you are going to throw," he said. "The bullpen is fun because you get that burst of adrenaline, but it's definitely fun to have both sides of the coin and know how to do both. "

The D-backs made room in the rotation for Collmenter by moving Randall Delgado to the bullpen. Delgado lasted just 3 1/3 innings in his start Thursday night. He pitched only four innings against the Rockies in the previous start.

"We just didn't feel Randall in his starts was improving," D-backs manager Kirk Gibson said. "He was having a hard time with his third pitch, which is his curveball, and I just felt team-wise we needed to get more length out of our starting pitchers and we didn't see that happening soon enough with Randall and at the same time, we thought Randall might benefit from going to the bullpen where there's not so much pressure of going through the lineup three times."

As for Collmenter, he's 1-1 with a 4.50 ERA in six appearances/one start in 18 career innings against the Mets.

"Who knows for how long, but I want to be a part of this rotation and hopefully, get things turned around here," he said.

Jesse Sanchez is a national reporter for Follow him on Twitter @JesseSanchezMLB.
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