Initially, this question was, "Who will be behind Guthrie in the 2012 rotation?" But he was dealt to the Colorado Rockies last week for pitchers Jason Hammel and Matt Lindstrom, removing the one certainty from the current hodgepodge. Hammel will fit in somewhere, and so should Taiwanese left-hander Wei-Yin Chen and right-hander Tommy Hunter. Still, all five spots are technically up for grabs, with an arm's-length list of hopeful arms battling: newcomers Tsuyoshi Wada and Dana Eveland and holdovers Jake Arrieta, Zach Britton, Brian Matusz, Alfredo Simon, Chris Tillman and Brad Bergesen. Then there is Armando Galarraga, a 30-year-old veteran who signed a minor league deal this winter. He's best known for pitching a near-perfect game in 2010, but in 2008, he won 13 games with the Detroit Tigers. He has the best big league resume of the current candidates, and he could be released in March if he has a rough spring. Here's another example of the jigsaw puzzle that manager Buck Showalter is assembling in camp: Two potential favorites for Opening Day starter, Arrieta and Hunter, also have minor league options remaining and could be sent to Triple-A Norfolk. Arrieta is coming off elbow surgery, so the club will be careful with him. "Big Game" Hunter is a bulldog and wouldn't be intimidated by the Opening Day assignment, but he has made just 55 major league starts in his career. Britton also is a bit of an uncertainty as he comes back slowly from lingering shoulder inflammation. Clearer now?
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