MILWAUKEE -- Brewers left-hander Chris Narveson will begin the season in a long-relief role, a precautionary move, manager Ron Roenicke said, to aid Narveson's comeback from last year's shoulder surgery.
That means the team's five-man starting rotation is set: Yovani Gallardo, Marco Estrada and Wily Peralta are tentatively scheduled to start against the Rockies from Monday-Wednesday, leaving Kyle Lohse and Mike Fiers to pitch the first two games of the following series against the D-backs, though not necessarily in that order. Lohse is coming off a severely abbreviated spring, so the Brewers will monitor his next bullpen session before finalizing his spot.
Narveson will not start Saturday's exhibition finale as originally scheduled, Roenicke said.
"We want to back off him a little bit," Roenicke said. "He's fine. He'll probably 'piggyback' Lohse when he makes that first start."
Narveson had surgery last May 1 to repair a torn labrum and torn rotator cuff in his left shoulder. He has not had any setbacks, Roenicke stressed.
The left-hander was having a solid Spring Training before he allowed six earned runs on eight hits and five walks in 3 2/3 innings against the A's on March 25. That happened to be the same day the Brewers signed Lohse, giving them the luxury of moving one projected starting pitcher to long relief.
"He's OK, but he's been really pushing through this thing in Spring Training, through the surgery," Roenicke said. "In the long run, it's probably going to help him to limit his innings at the start."
Adam McCalvy is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Brew Beat, and follow him on Twitter at @AdamMcCalvy. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.