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“We have that confidence in him that he can match up with whoever is put out there by any other club,” Farrell said.

Behind Romero and Morrow are Brett Cecil, who has dropped about 30 pounds as he tries to turn around last year’s 4-11 season back to his 15-7 in 2010, highly rated prospect Henderson Alvarez, and Dustin McGowan, who missed virtually all of 2009-2011 due to shoulder surgeries. Kyle Drabek figures to start at Las Vegas and be the first callup if a spot in the rotation opens up.