Wednesday, February 13, 2013

40 Man, Option Shuffle

One sidebar of this year's camp will be the Pirate management of the 40-man roster, which is now full and doesn't have very many holes in it as in seasons past.

There are at least three guys on the non-roster invitee list with a chance of breaking camp with the team: LHP Jonathan Sanchez, 3B Brandon Inge and IF Ivan DeJesus. There are also a couple of other players like OF Felix Pie, RHP Vin Mazzaro and LHP Mike Zagurski that are unlikely to start with the Bucs but as of now are on the short list as replacements if performance/injury issues rear their ugly head. Oh, and some non-roster kid named Gerrit Cole may get a look this year, too.

Another situation to be dealt with is the number of guys that are out of options. OFs Jose Tabata and Travis Snider are in that status, but are both pretty safe bets to make the club. But there are some pitchers that fall into that category who will fighting for jobs, like RHPs Chris Leroux, Bryan Morris and Jeanmar Gomez.

Other Pirates are down to their last option: OF Alex Presley, LHP Jeff Locke, RHP Kyle McPherson, 1B Clint Robinson, LHP Andy Oliver, OF Jerry Sands and RHP Stolmy Pimentel, so the Bucs can buy some time with them, but have to figure where they fit in the long term.

The Pirates do have ways to mitigate the roster stress. They could start the non-roster players at Indy and call them up as the situation arises; they all are on minor league deals and can be sent down without consequence.

Charlie Morton will start the year on the 60-day DL, which will free up a spot. If Francisco Liriano is placed on the 15-day DL, that will clear a slot on the active roster spot, but not a 40-man spot.

The Pirate FO has been in collection mode ever since they came aboard because of the dearth of talent in the system, but that era is hopefully coming to a close. They get a pass this year; Indy is thin on position players, so it makes sense to stock up on a couple of low-cost term insurance policies.But the time's nearing when they'll have to start moving guys to both bring in talent and manage the 40-man roster.

No comments: