Lamb behind schedule after back surgery

Young lefty underwent procedure in December

Lamb behind schedule after back surgery

CINCINNATI -- One of the young pitchers expected to compete for a spot in the Reds' rotation is unlikely to be 100 percent when Spring Training begins next week.

It was revealed recently that left-hander John Lamb underwent disc surgery on his back in December.

"John Lamb is a little bit behind schedule," Reds manager Bryan Price said on Monday on MLB Network's High Heat. "So he'll be competing for a job, but [he] probably won't be ready until the middle of the month of April."

High Heat: Bryan Price

Lamb, 25, was one of three lefty pitchers to arrive on July 26 from the Royals in the trade for ace Johnny Cueto. He made his big league debut for Cincinnati in August.

In 10 Major League starts, Lamb went 1-5 with a 5.80 ERA after going 10-2 with a 2.67 ERA over 20 starts at the Triple-A level.

While right-handers Anthony DeSclafani and Raisel Iglesias are expected to be locks at the top of the rotation, there will be three open spots until the return of veteran Homer Bailey from Tommy John surgery.

Among the candidates for rotation spots besides Lamb are Jon Moscot, Michael Lorenzen, Cody Reed, Robert Stephenson, Keyvius Sampson, Brandon Finnegan and Jonathan Sanchez.

Mark Sheldon is a reporter for Read his blog, Mark My Word, follow him on Twitter @m_sheldon and Facebook and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.