First, if we wanted to compete, REALLY wanted to compete, we would have made the trade the Blue Jays made with the Marlins. It would have filled most of our needs and we had the prospects to get Miami to trade with us. The scary thing is not the risk of making the trade but the potentially moronic things we will do this off-season trying to bottom feed to compete when our problems need much more than bottom feeding to fix.
Second, regarding the 40-man roster there are two issues: who do we remove and who do we add.
Who do we remove?
The answers are pretty obvious to me. We need to remove Chris Seddon, Blake Wood, Lars Anderson, Brent Lillibridge and Ezequiel Carrera.
Face it, these guys can be replaced by 4A guys any time we want to add one. Why waste roster spots on these guys?
If we need extra roster spots we then DFA, in order, Thomas Neal, Fabio Martinez and Cord Phelps
Also, we need to dump Jack Hannahan.
This gives us a total of 9 roster spots to work with, 5 being solid.
Who do we add?
Looking at the Indians players who are eligible for the Rule 5 draft, here is who we add: T.J. House, T.J. McFarland and Chun Chen.
Why not Jesus Aguilar, Trey Haley, Carlos Moncrief, Tim Fedroff, Bryce Stowell, Trey Haley, Rob Bryson or Giovanny Urshela? They won't stick even if they are drafted. They just aren't ready AND their upside is still questionable even if they did stick. There are reasons that guys who we feel are attractive selections never are even drafted in the Rule 5 and the above guys mirror all those reasons.
Why not Matt Packer, Austin Adams or Chen Lee? They were top prospects for the Indians last year but won't be ready and have to shake the dust off them for this season. They would probably not make the active roster long enough this year to be able to sent to the minors at the beginning of next year.
So we remove 5 and add 4, leaving us one open roster spot plus Hannahan's spot.
Now let's see what REALLY happens.