While most of the minor leaguers have been sent down at this point and a few of the ones who remain in camp are here because they are the first in line, and fungible assets, in case guys who have the 25 man roster made are getting hurt. However, a few guys are making it hard to make decisions:
- Austin Jackson has been firing on all cylinders
- Tyler Naquin is, too....when his body is working
- With Kipnis out we need one more infielder for April. Gonzalez is a stud defensively but will he hit more than Urshela, who is also a stud defensively? Will Shaffer be kept just because he is a veteran presence? And what about Yandy Diaz? Will he be this year's Naquin who hits his way onto the club and into a starting role due to a major injury (Kipnis)?
- The bullpen looked shaky for a period of time but now it is looking good and it is looking set as Shawn Armstrong is still here and a slew of minor league invitees have been sent out.
- The starters look OK except for Carrasco and he could be hidden as a 5th starter for a week or two...maybe even sent to the minors on a 'rehab' while we only need 4 starters. Our depth at AAA took a hit with Cooney going down and Anderson now being sidelined for the season. Still, the starting pitching looks solid.
- Plus, will Brantley be ready or will he open the season on the DL and we start with Naquin, Chisenhall, Guyer, Jackson and Almonte? If Brantley is healthy, the way things are going I see Naquin as the odd man out but it could be Jackson or Almonte as the former is on a minor league deal and I don't think Almonte makes a huge difference on this team.
If we stay healthy we look good and deep. Those are two things every major league team is looking for at this point and few find it. If we just stay healthy we have it locked down.
Not a lot of earth shattering news here but having your roster in place a week or two before the season starts certainly helps out but things can still happen so we'll see what the next two weeks bring.