SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- With his spot in the rotation seemingly secure, Jeff Samardzija has the luxury of working on refining his pitches this spring.

Samardzija was on the mound again Friday, giving up 10 hits and seven runs in an eventual 10-8 victory over the Colorado Rockies for Chicago Cubs.

In the past, Samardzija had used spring to fight for a spot, most of the time in the bullpen.

And the temptation has been to us him in the pen again.

“There’s no doubt you say that, but at same time you never doubt the importance of a 6-foot-6, 230-pound horse on the mound (as a starter),” manager Dale Sveum said. “Every organization strives for developing or acquiring someone like that. That usually outweighs the other one (of reliever).”

The lineup behind Samardzija had a different look at the top, with David DeJesus leading off, Ian Stewart batting second and Starlin Castro third as Sveum tinkers batting orders.

The biggest day on offense came from catcher Geovany Soto, who ripped a pair of homers and a single for five RBI.

dvandyck@tribune.com

Twitter @davandyck