Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Predicting The New York Yankees Opening Day Roster

Obviously a lot can change between now and the Yankees opener on April 1st at home against the Boston Red Sox because a lot has changed since the last time I typed up this post. I had Curtis Granderson and Mark Teixeira penciled into the middle of the line up, had Dan Johnson winning a bench spot, Clay Rapada winning a bullpen spot, and Brennan Boesch was no where to be found. Let's try this again, shall we?

C - Francisco Cervelli
1B - Juan Rivera
2B - Robinson Cano
SS - Derek Jeter
3B - Kevin Youkilis
LF - Brett Gardner
CF - Melky Mesa
RF - Ichiro Suzuki
DH - Travis Hafner

BN - Chris Stewart
BN - Brennan Boesch
BN - Eduardo Nunez
BN - Jayson Nix

SP - CC Sabathia
SP - Hiroki Kuroda
SP - Andy Pettitte
SP - Phil Hughes
SP - Ivan Nova

LR - David Phelps
MR - Boone Logan
MR - Joba Chamberlain
MR - David Aardsma
MR - Jim Miller
SU - David Robertson
CL - Mariano Rivera

Jim Miller has pitched well enough to earn a spot, albeit not a huge spot, in the Yankees roster. Joe Girardi has already said that he plans to use a veteran righty in place of Clay Rapada so I think that guy will be Jim Miller. Cody Eppley and Shawn Kelley are also vying for that spot but they have minor league options remaining where Jim Miller does not and I think that is the ultimate decision maker.

Brennan Boesch was basically guaranteed a spot on the Opening Day roster when he signed a minor league contract last week. He will platoon with Ichiro Suzuki in right field if I had to guess and will fill in whenever Melky Mesa is not playing and Brett Gardner is in center field.

No other big surprises here if you ask me. It is a forgone conclusion that Juan Rivera will win the first base job, Melky Mesa will win the center field job, and I think the Yankees will carry both Jayson Nix and Eduardo Nunez out of camp. This is not a common occurrence in Yankees camp having a prospect and a guy on a minor league job winning big spots out of spring but I guess when injuries pile up the depth is tested. I just hope the Yankees can survive a touch early schedule with a 25 man roster like this...

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Sorry for the Capatcha... Blame the Russians :)