Walt Weiss' focus is on options, not absorbing information entering his second spring in charge.
Speaking from Scottsdale, Ariz., Weiss said Wednesday that he's leaning strongly toward hitting all-star Michael Cuddyer second in his lineup and the expected shift of Carlos Gonzalez to center field is not a certainty.
As for batting Cuddyer second, Weiss revisited his past as a Rockies' player when Ellis Burks hit in the No. 2 hole. Adding power and the reigning batting champion in that spot is appealing.
"It is very likely. It reminds me of when we had Ellis there," Weiss said. "I talked to (Cuddyer) about it this winter. I like the idea of having such a powerful hitter there when the lineup turns over. Cuddy is a proven run producer."
Weiss will also consider hitting Gonzalez second but ruled out employing him in the leadoff spot. Cuddyer is open to the switch after batting primarily in the middle of the order last season.
"I like it," Cuddyer said. "If it were to happen, it would give us some dangerous hitters in the top and middle of the order. If we didn't have the depth in the order, obviously it wouldn't work."
Cuddyer batted .331 last season with 54 extra-base hits. Cuddyer would tentatively be followed by Gonzalez or Troy Tulowitzki — Weiss hasn't decided — Wilin Rosario, Justin Morneau, Nolan Arenado and DJ LeMahieu. Rosario and Morneau could flip-flop depending on where CarGo and Tulo hit to create alternating looks of left-right-left or right-left-right.
Gonzalez surprised Weiss as an early arrival at Salt River Fields. The two-time all-star was "hitting balls to the moon just like last spring," Weiss said, and won't be limited by an offseason appendectomy, hernia surgery or his previous sprained right middle finger.
"His finger feels good. His stomach feels good. He's ready to go full bore," Weiss said. "He's hitting home runs from foul pole to foul pole."
The winner of the left-field derby — Charlie Blackmon, Corey Dickerson and Drew Stubbs are candidates — is likely to bat leadoff. If Blackmon or Stubbs wins the job outright, CarGo could be shifted back to left field. Regardless of the decision, he won't be bouncing from position to position.
"We will watch the outfielders in spring. We have multiple options," Weiss said. "A lot of it comes back to what our best lineup is and how we match up offensively."
Chatwood's chips. Starter Tyler Chatwood, who dealt with an arm injury last season, had bone chips removed from his throwing elbow but won't face any restrictions in camp, Weiss said. Chatwood threw a side session Wednesday. Reliever Boone Logan underwent a similar procedure this winter.
"We will check them the day after they throw to make sure there's no weird soreness," Weiss said. "But they both are good to go."
Saving the day. LaTroy Hawkins will enter spring training as the closer but could get days off or be used differently depending on the lineup, according to Weiss. In that case Rex Brothers or even Logan could get a chance.
"If LaTroy's worked a couple of nights in a row or the lineup turns over with lefties in the ninth, we have the flexibility to go with our lefties," Weiss said.