Globe iconLogin iconRecap iconSearch iconTickets icon
news

MLB News

Gallardo's focus shifts to bullpen ... for now

MLB.com @AdamMcCalvy

GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Yovani Gallardo started some of the biggest games in recent Brewers history, but if he is to win a second chance with the team, it's looking like bullpen or bust.

Milwaukee manager Craig Counsell said Monday that Gallardo, who had been competing for one of the two open spots in the starting rotation, was being pulled out of that race and would make his next few Cactus League appearances in shorter relief stints. The Brewers have two openings in the bullpen.

GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Yovani Gallardo started some of the biggest games in recent Brewers history, but if he is to win a second chance with the team, it's looking like bullpen or bust.

Milwaukee manager Craig Counsell said Monday that Gallardo, who had been competing for one of the two open spots in the starting rotation, was being pulled out of that race and would make his next few Cactus League appearances in shorter relief stints. The Brewers have two openings in the bullpen.

"How we're constructed now, that's kind of where we're looking at him," Counsell said. "But I will tell you that could change. That's not in stone."

Gallardo has a 6.75 ERA and a 2.13 WHIP through four Cactus League appearances while working, at the urging of the Brewers, on altering his pitching style to rebound from two down years with the Orioles and Mariners. Counsell has praised Gallardo's commitment to the project.

:: Spring Training coverage presented by Camping World ::

Asked whether a move to relief would change anything for the 32-year-old right-hander, Counsell said, "I don't think so. He's going to pitch in shorter stints. … He's not going to try any harder to get outs. In shorter stints, you don't have to go through the lineup multiple times. He may have an opportunity to go max effort a little bit more."

Gallardo returned to the Brewers on a non-guaranteed contract with a $2 million base salary and $2 million more available in incentives for both starting and relief work. If the Brewers opt to release Gallardo before Opening Day, they would owe only a quarter of his base salary.

With Gallardo out of the running for the rotation, the primary competitors are left-handers Wade Miley and Brent Suter, and right-handers Junior Guerra and Brandon Woodruff.

"Part of this is we have a lot of choices still, and at two weeks away from leaving Phoenix, we have to cut that number down and get to a point that's manageable for the rest of spring," Counsell said. "We have to make decisions."

Adam McCalvy has covered the Brewers for MLB.com since 2001. Follow him on Twitter @AdamMcCalvy and like him on Facebook.

Milwaukee Brewers, Yovani Gallardo