Brewers may opt to skip Fiers' next start

Brewers may opt to skip Fiers' next start

MILWAUKEE -- The Brewers were still mulling their options Sunday for aligning the starting rotation through off-days on April 11, 15 and 25. The first decision will come later this week, when the Brewers have the option of skipping No. 5 starter Mike Fiers in the wake of his poor season debut on Saturday night.

The team's first turn through the rotation did not go well. Only Kyle Lohse logged a quality start, and through five games, Brewers pitchers ranked last in the National League with a .333 opponents' batting average.

"There's not a sense of urgency, but I never want to start off this way," manager Ron Roenicke said. "I guess I would like them to get locked in as soon as we can, but it's not a time to panic and worry about what we're doing.

"The only thing that comes up is all of these off-days and whether we should skip somebody in the rotation to keep the other guys more on line. Not because we don't like our fifth starter, but just because we're trying to figure out what helps the other guys."

Roenicke and pitching coach Rick Kranitz generally have kept their five starters in line, bumping everyone back when the team encounters off-days. But they were working with a much more experienced starting rotation over the past two seasons than the one the Brewers are featuring in 2013.

Lohse's schedule could be particularly impacted by the decision. He is scheduled to start Wednesday against the Cubs, and if the Brewers opt to keep all five pitchers in line, Lohse would not pitch again until April 17 -- seven days later.

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.