Interesting column from Jerome Solomon on Russ Ortiz. It's your feel-good story of the day, but within the story we get an inference that Brandon Backe probably isn't going to get a shot at the rotation any time soon.
Cooper, on Ortiz:
"He’s pitched much, much better than he did as a starter. He’s more consistent in the strike zone. He’s had some great outings. He’s probably still not happy. He understands it; he doesn’t like it. … When there’s an opportunity, he’ll probably get it."
"Now I think I can throw as well as I ever have; the way I feel right now. The fastball is there, it’s got life on it. The other stuff’s working, too. So I feel good out there. I know myself best, and I know if I’m feeling as well as I have, I’m going to do well and contribute. That’s the way I feel right now. That’s the way I felt through the spring and this whole year. Now when I get an opportunity to pitch, I’m where I need to be to be successful. When I go in there I feel like I’m going to do well every time. It’s not going to happen every time, but that’s how I feel. It’s working right now."