The Tacoma Rainiers opening day roster is set. Let’s take a look:
- Luke French
- Blake Beavan
- Chris Seddon
- Chaz Roe
The Rainiers fifth starter will not be added until game five. He’s not even in Tacoma right now – the boss doesn’t want to say who it is until he actually joins the team in Sacramento.
This looks like a solid rotation to start the season – both French and Seddon had terrific seasons in the PCL last year.
- Denny Bautista
- Dan Cortes
- Manny Delcarmen
- Cesar Jimenez
- Justin Miller
- Edward Paredes
- Royce Ring
- Chris Smith
The bullpen will be a big strength for the Rainiers. Seven of the eight have MLB experience, and other than Cortes, we’re talking about a lot of MLB experience. This bullpen is so strong that Scott Patterson didn’t make the cut – the big righty, who was an unsung hero of the Rainiers championship last year, will start the season at Class-AA Jackson.
Not on the pitching staff: Yusmeiro Petit, who apparently is going to begin the season in extended spring training.
- Josh Bard
- Chris Gimenez
No surprises here. Bard has nearly eight years of major league experience and will be a terrific influence on the Rainiers pitching staff.
- 1B – Matt Tuiasosopo
- 2B – Dustin Ackley
- SS – Sean Kazmar
- 3B – Alex Liddi
- Utility – Leury Bonilla
- Utility – Jetsy Extrano
The utility infielders are the surprise here. When Luis Rodriguez made the Mariners roster and Josh Wilson was released, it left an opening. Bonilla has been a jack-of-all-trades utility man throughout the Mariners minor leagues.
In case you are wondering, Jetsy Extrano is a real person. No, I do not yet know how to pronounce that. If he doesn’t run really, really fast it will be a major disappointment.
- Mike Carp
- Greg Halman
- Carlos Peguero
- Mike Wilson
Nice outfield. Lots of homers that will come with lots of strikeouts. Halman is the only true center fielder – Wilson will patrol center when Halman needs a break.
- Here is the final version of the news story on the Rainiers ownership transfer, and here is a shorter version from the Seattle Times.
- The Mariners lost to Texas in the series opener, 6-4, but Erik Bedard pitched for the first time since 2009. Jack Wilson turned a unique and rather stunning double play – here is the video.
- For our younger readers here at Mike… Off-Mic we like to provide life lessons, such as this one: there are certain things in this world that never stop being funny no matter how old you are, as former Rainiers reliever Mark Lowe shows here.
- Tonight Michael Pineda makes his major league debut (5:00 pm on Root Sports). Yesterday he was John Sickles’ Prospect of the Day. Today Pineda’s debut was previewed by Greg Johns, and Lookout Landing weighed in with a poll.
- Jason Churchill has an item on lower-level Mariners pitching prospects Forest Snow and Stephen Pryor. One correction to his story: Snow is the opening day starter for Clinton, not High Desert. At least that’s what he says on his twitter (@fesnow). I’m expecting a full report from him on Flavor Flav’s ceremonial first pitch.
The Pacific Coast League opens on Thursday, so let’s round ’em up:
- No team in the PCL is more loaded with young talent than Omaha. Eric Hosmer and Mike Moustakas are the top prospects – here’s a feature on Hosmer.
- Popular ex-Rainiers first baseman Bryan LaHair is on the Iowa Cubs opening day roster.
- The Reno Aces have reported.
- Fresno’s opening day roster is set – Tacoma plays Fresno in the second series of the opening road trip. If we were there today instead, we would have an opportunity to try to steal the World Series Trophy.
- Uh-oh! The Tucson Padres uniforms have not arrived yet.
- Our dreaded rival the Salt Lake Bees are prepping for opening day. Starting pitcher Tyler Chatwood is the big prospect on the Bees roster to open the season.
- Gotta link to a feature on catcher Corky Miller, who spent about 72 hours with the Rainiers in 2006.
- This is amazing: the only video board in the PCL even close to the size of the Cheney Stadium board was the one at now-defunct Rosenblatt Stadium. Incredibly, they are disassembling the video board and moving it to a high school football field. High school!
The Rainiers season opener is Thursday. Tomorrow I’ll post the 2011 broadcast plans.