When I try to wrap my head around something, I like to make lists. I like to listen to instrumental rock and I like to make lists.
So, without further ado …
For starters, let’s look at the 40-man. You can see it all laid out here in an official capacity, but I would like to break it down thusly:
Guys Already Sent To The Minors:
- Danny Hultzen (SP – Left Handed)
- Yoervis Medina (SP – Right Handed)
- Mauricio Robles (RP – Left Handed)
- Francisco Martinez (3B – Right Handed)
- Carlos Truinfel (Inf – Right Handed)
- Johermyn Chavez (OF – Right Handed)
- Chih-Hsien Chiang (OF – Left Handed)
- Trayvon Robinson (OF – Switch Hitter)
Guys Destined For The Minors:
- Chance Ruffin (RP – Right Handed)
- Charlie Furbush (SP – Left Handed)
- Adam Moore (C – Right Handed)
- Alex Liddi (Inf – Right Handed)
- Carlos Peguero (OF – Left Handed)
Guys On The Disabled List Who Will Eventually Be In The Majors:
- Franklin Gutierrez (CF – Right Handed)
Now we’re getting somewhere! Forget those 14 guys even exist, because they won’t matter until the season is well out of hand.
Now, how about we get to your Starting Nine, in what appears to be the order Eric Wedge will have them batting (at least initially):
- Chone Figgins (3B – Switch Hitter)
- Dustin Ackley (2B – Left Handed)
- Ichiro (RF – Left Handed)
- Justin Smoak (1B – Switch Hitter)
- Jesus Montero (DH – Right Handed)
- Mike Carp (LF – Left Handed)
- Miguel Olivo (C – Right Handed)
- Michael Saunders (CF – Left Handed)
- Brendan Ryan (SS – Right Handed)
Now, if I were convinced that these guys would be good, I’d say that’s one helluva lineup to post against a right handed pitcher. But, I digress. Those are your starting 9 to start the season, barring some fluke.
Guys Who Figure To Start The Season On The Bench:
- John Jaso (C – Left Handed)
- Munenori Kawasaki (Inf – Left Handed) (also: not yet on the 40-man, but will be)
- Casper Wells (OF – Right Handed)
- Kyle Seager (Inf – Left Handed)
Assuming, of course, the team goes with a 4-man bench. I’m also assuming that Casper Wells makes the team over Carlos Peguero (which, let’s be realistic, is the way it SHOULD be). If Wells continues to struggle as he has in Spring Training, then when Guti comes back, it’ll be a matter of either Wells or Saunders going back down to Tacoma. But, that’s an argument for another time. This brings our 40-man total to 27. Let’s look at the pitchers.
- Felix Hernandez (Right Handed)
- Jason Vargas (Left Handed)
- Kevin Millwood (Right Handed) (also: not yet on the 40-man, but will be)
- Blake Beavan (Right Handed)
- Hector Noesi (Right Handed)
So, it doesn’t really diversify all that much (4 righties & a lefty), but it’s what we’ve got, so we better get used to it. I fully expect Millwood to be the 3rd starter, because I doubt very much that Wedge is going to keep on a veteran like Millwood and not put him right in the middle of the order. Then again, who really cares? The last four pitchers on this list inspire fear in exactly no one, so take my order with a grain of salt.
This brings us to our 7-man bullpen:
- Brandon League (Closer)
- George Sherrill (Left Handed)
- Tom Wilhelmsen (Right Handed)
- Lucas Luetge (Left Handed)
- Shawn Kelley (Right Handed)
- Steve Delabar (Right Handed)
- Hisashi Iwakuma (Right Handed)
Yeah, I guess we’ll see. I think the bullpen might be the biggest wildcard on the team. Who knows WHAT you’re going to get?
And at this point, you might be thinking, “Hey! That’s only 39 guys!” And you’d be right. I don’t know if they need to right now or not, but if they had to they could always put Erasmo Ramirez on the 40-man to make things a little more complete. Although, if he’s not on the 40-man now, and we’re past the point of the Rule 5 Draft, I don’t see why the Mariners have to go to all the trouble right now. Seems like they could easily wait until the end of the season (or whenever he earns his way up to the Big Club) to add him to the 40-man.
Anyway, that’s it. I feel better informed already!