PITTSBURGH -- Shaun Marcum said Saturday will be "just another start," though it's been a long time in the making.
"Two months too long," he said.
The Brewers formally activated Marcum from the 60-day disabled list on Friday, and he will return to the rotation on Saturday at PNC Park. It will be Marcum's first Major League start since June 14 at Kansas City, when he developed stiffness in his surgically-repaired right elbow.
Marcum expected at the time to miss one start. He wound up missing more than two months.
After making three rehabilitation starts for Class A Wisconsin, Marcum will be able to throw about 90 pitches on Saturday. There was some discussion of bringing him back to the big leagues after two Minor League starts, but manager Ron Roenicke and other club officials convinced Marcum to pitch one last time. He wound up throwing 71 pitches on Monday.
Was that mostly to benefit Marcum, or the team?
"Both," Roenicke said. "I thought it would benefit him, and when we talked to him, I think he understood that. ... It's an important time for him to pitch well. He's a free agent after the season, and I think that's a time he needs to show people he can pitch. We all know he can pitch -- I've been watching him for a team and a half. The guy can pitch
. But to stay healthy and to do well so everybody else sees you, I think that's big for him.
"Now, for us, it also helps because we're getting more innings from him now. I also think that extra game allows him to pitch better for us that first time out. We're trying to win as many games as we can. We don't want to concede anything. I know that certainly the numbers are stacked well against us, but we're still going to go out and try to win every game we can."