We have an opening day roster! The PDF with player info and a few stats is right here.
Starting Pitchers: Danny Hultzen, Andrew Carraway, Jeremy Bonderman, James Paxton, D.J. Mitchell (listed in order of starting rotation – Paxton lines up for the home opener next Friday).
Bullpen: Logan Bawcom, Danny Farquhar, Steven Hensley, Bobby LaFromboise, Brian Moran, Yoervis Medina, Jhonny Nunez, Brian Sweeney.
Catchers: Jesus Sucre, Mike Zunino.
Infielders: Nick Franklin, Alex Liddi, Rich Poythress, Scott Savastano, Nate Tenbrink, Carlos Triunfel.
Outfielders: Denny Almonte, Endy Chavez, Carlos Peguero, Eric Thames.
Disabled List: Erasmo Ramirez, Stefen Romero, Joe Dunigan, Anthony Vasquez.
The first surprise is that Erasmo Ramirez is on the disabled list. He battled some triceps tightness in spring training, and when I saw him last week in a minor league intrasquad game he did not look sharp. He staying back in Arizona to work things out – hopefully this is nothing serious.
Next surprise: no Vinnie Catricala or Hector Noesi. Both of them are going to Double-A Jackson to start the season – kind of an odd move, since both are on the 40-man roster. However, they both struggled in Tacoma last year, so perhaps the Mariners are hoping to jump-start them with a comfortable assignment.
As expected, Chance Ruffin is going to Double-A for the purpose of transitioning to the starting rotation.
I know a lot of Rainiers fans liked last year’s back-up catcher Brandon Bantz. He is in Jackson to open the season.
As you know by now, Jason Bay won the battle for the final Mariners roster spot, and Casper Wells was designated for assignment. Wells is in “baseball limbo” for ten days – it is possible that he could join the Rainiers when this period is up if no team claims him on waivers.
I spoke to manager Daren Brown briefly today, and he says he thinks that this will be a fun team to watch. He wondered if it is even younger than last year’s team, and it might be. The two elder statesmen (Brian Sweeney and Endy Chavez) may keep the average age a bit higher.
Tomorrow around noon I’ll have a post about opening day and the radio broadcast. First pitch is 7:15 Thursday night! Danny Hultzen against Fresno’s Yusmeiro Petit.