Friday, March 30, 2012

The 25 Man Roster Guessing Game

We're nearing the end of spring training, and I'd be remiss if I didn't make some wild guesses about who will be on the 25 man roster on opening day (since things have changed since the start of spring training).

Starters (4):
Tim Lincecum, Matt Cain, Madison Bumgarner, Barry Zito

Relievers (7):
Jeremy Affeldt, Santiago Casilla, Javier Lopez, Guillermo Mota, Sergio Romo, Brian Wilson, Clay Hensley

Mystery arm (1)
With Ryan Vogelsong on the DL until the middle of April, it's the Giants will carry a bullpen arm to eat some innings until he gets back. 

Top candidates: Danny Otero, Steve Edlefsen, Jean Machi  and Yusmeiro Petit (although the Giants seem to be eyeing Petit as potential starting depth). Otero and Edlefsen are on the 40 man roster, which means less shuffling for a week or so of bullpen activity, but Jean Machi is still in camp.

My guess: Danny Otero seems to be the most interesting candidate, but the Giants have been saying that he'll start the season as the set up man for Heath Hembree in Fresno. If that's true, then I'd think Edlefsen.

That leaves thirteen spots for position players. I've gone on record in favor of including Gregor Blanco (here), Hector Sanchez (here), and Brandon Belt (here) on the 25 man team. That didn't quite seem possible until the Giants cut Mike Fontenot today. The odds are low, but it could still happen if the Giants decided to make Sanchez the lone back up catcher, which didn't seem to be on the radar until yesterday. I'll admit, this is more of a wish list than a prediction, but after last year's offense...

Catchers (2):
Buster Posey, Hector Sanchez

Infielders (7):
Brandon Belt, Emmanuel Burriss, Brandon Crawford, Pablo Sandoval, Ryan Theriot, Aubrey Huff, Brett Pill

Outfield (4):
Gregor Blanco, Melky Cabrera, Angel Pagan, Nate Schierholtz

DL: Freddy Sanchez

It still seems more likely that the Giants will start with a three catcher scenario, while letting Belt demolish his opposition in the Pacific Coast League. But this roster could happen.

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