Chatwood gets nod to start intrasquad game

Chatwood gets nod to start intrasquad game

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- Right-hander Tyler Chatwood, who underwent surgery to remove bone chips from his throwing elbow at the end of last season, but appears recovered, will make his first Spring Training start Thursday in an intrasquad game.

Chatwood, 24, went 8-5 with an eye-opening 3.15 ERA last season, but in just 111 1/3 innings. Chatwood threw another 34 innings at Triple-A Colorado Springs while waiting for his callup, and will have to show he can handle a heavy workload this season. Chatwood's career high total was 158 innings -- 142 in the Majors -- with the Angels in 2011 before he was traded to the Rockies.

Last season, the elbow chips and a strained hamstring limited his innings.

"My arm feels fine, and I think that's 100 percent," Chatwood said. "I might be a little bit behind as far as how sharp I like to be early in camp, but I think that's a matter of getting into games and getting adrenaline going."

The Rockies enter the Spring Training schedule with Chatwood penciled in as a key rotation component. It's the first time in his career that Chatwood has been depended upon that way, but he's approaching it as if he has to win a job.

"I think it's still pretty crucial," Chatwood said. "You want to show them why you feel you deserve a spot in the rotation."

Thomas Harding is a reporter for Follow him on Twitter @harding_at_mlb. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.