Padres rumors: Exploring options for No. 5 starter

Al Messerschmidt

The Padres continue to consider starting pitching options from outside the organization.

The San Diego Padres have essentially decided on the first four pitchers in their starting rotation. While they have several in-house candidates for the role of No. 5 starter, the Padres continue to consider options from outside the organization, according to Corey Brock of MLB.com.

When asked about the Padres being in the market for a starting pitcher, general manager Josh Byrnes told reporters that the team continues to send out scouts and speak with "a few clubs." San Diego isn't going to "add a body for sake of adding pitchers," says Byrnes. But he would be willing to take a serious look at an outside arm if "it was someone we felt was an upgrade."

At this point, the Padres are prepared to enter the regular season with a starting four that includes Edinson Volquez, Clayton Richard, Jason Marquis and Eric Stults. San Diego has several candidates on its current roster -- including Tyson Ross and Andrew Cashner -- vying for the final spot, along with a pair of players in camp on minor league deals -- Tim Stauffer and Freddy Garcia.

San Diego has been tied to pitchers throughout the offseason, but they've been most recently connected to Tigers right-hander Rick Porcello. Detroit has reportedly offered Porcello for Huston Street and Porcello for Luke Gregerson, but both deals were turned down by the Padres. While an agreement has yet to be reached, the sides continue to discuss a potential trade.

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