Jake Arrieta gives club best chance to win in rotation, says Kapler

Jake Arrieta to pitch through pain for now
Jake Arrieta has had a rough go of things lately, and now it's become evident he's pitching with a bone spur in his throwing elbow. That's bad news for a pitching staff in desperate need of an anchor behind ace Aaron Nola.

Manager Gabe Kapler said on Wednesday though that he's going to keep Arrieta in the rotation.

"He's having a harder time getting extended the way he normally does, especially on that curveball. This is limiting his ability to throw the ball where he wants to throw it," Kapler told SportsRadio 94WIP on Wednesday. "All of that said, Jake is a competitor, and for the Phillies, it's always worth considering if Jake at 85 percent of himself is a better option than what we have at Triple-A."

Arrieta entered June with an ERA just below 4.00. He now enters the second half of the season with a 4.67 ERA after having surrendered five runs in four of his last seven starts and a 7.71 ERA over his last three outings.

Arrieta is scheduled to pitch on Sunday in the finale against the Nationals. From there, a further decision will be made if he should remain in the starting rotation.

Arrieta's injury, combined with the lack of steadiness from the back end of the rotation, is the Phillies biggest weakness as we sit here now less than three weeks from the trade deadline.

If Arrieta stumbles or the pain gets to be too much, the Phils lack an internal option that's Major League ready and able to pitch in a potential push for a playoff spot.

For many reasons, this weekend series with the Nats is crucial for the Phillies.
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Follow Patrick on Twitter: @PGordonPBR

BY PATRICK GORDON
Managing Editor
pgordon@philadelphiabaseballreview.com

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