We are a few weeks, two intra-squad games and four official games into Spring Training. Now is a good time to take a look at our 2007 25-man roster projections. Over the course of the next month we will update these projections twice a week.

A couple of notes on these projections…

  • We understand that a few of the players listed as “secure” are not guaranteed to be the opening day starter at their respective positions. For example, there is an outside shot that Akinori Iwamura could still be the opening day second baseman. Still, at this point there is no indication that a move will happen. The “secure” positions are based on what we believe would happen if Papa Joe Maddon had to name his opening day lineup and roster today.
  • Several people have made the argument that our previous prediction of an 11-man pitching staff was unlikely. Their arguments must have been strong because we now tend to agree that Papa Joe is more likely to keep seven arms in the bullpen and only four bats on the bench.
  • With those numbers in mind, it now looks as if there are four roster spots up for grabs, with two on the bench and two in the bullpen. We almost listed B. J. Upton as secure, but we still think there is a remote chance that the team will send him back to Durham for more work. Even though Al Reyes is not on the 40-man roster we give him the edge in the final two bullpen slots. As long as he is healthy (and every indication so far is that he is) it is his position to lose. The final bullpen spot is really just a guess at this point.
  • We have long thought that the final spot in the rotation would go to J. P. Howell based on his performance towards the end of 2006. However, of the prospective pitchers vying for the final spot, Jae-Kuk Ryu is the only one that has been given a start so far and he pitched a solid two innings.
  • Greg Norton has been the DH with the regulars, but we still think when the season starts Papa Joe will go with Jonny Gomes on a regular basis, if not every day.

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  1. Sean says:

    I think you hit the roster dead on. The only real question mark that I would have is Dohmann as I think Salas will give him a run for his money in the bullpen.

  2. The Professor says:

    You are probably right. Actually read some quotes from Maddon after writing this post in which he says that Salas is in front for one of the bullpen spots. That surprises me a little because Dogmann has more experience (BTW the "Dogmann" was a typo, but we kinda like it, so we are leaving it in). Still it is hard to judge, because Maddon would say his girlfriend had a good shot at making the roster if she was in camp. He says EVERYBODY has a good shot at the roster.

  3. Greg says:

    Hammel not in the rotation? Orvella not in the pen? Looks like Durham will have a better team than Tampa again this year.

  4. Anonymous says:

    I think Stokes will be on the roster.

  5. The Professor says:

    he is definitely a candidate for that 5th spot, and so far this spring he has been solid if not great. his strikeout to walk ratio has never been great. if he can cut down on the free passes he could be a serviceable major league starter. so far this spring. o walks in 3.2 innings. good start.


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