Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Opening Day Roster is Set

The 25-man roster is set, and the biggest surprise is Joe Savery. Savery, who has just 2.2 career innings in the big leagues made the team and provides the Phillies with an extra left-hander out of the bullpen. Here's the roster:

Pitchers (12): Roy Halladay, Cliff Lee, Cole Hamels, Vance Worley, Joe Blanton, Jonathan Papelbon, David Herndon, Kyle Kendrick, Chad Qualls, Mike Stutes, Antonio Bastardo and Savery.

Catchers (2): Carlos Ruiz and Brian Schneider

Infielders (6): Jimmy Rollins, Placido Polanco, Freddy Galvis, Jim Thome, Ty Wigginton and Pete Orr

Outfielders (5): Hunter Pence, Shane Victorino, Juan Pierre, John Mayberry Jr. and Laynce Nix.

Ryan Howard, Chase Utley, Michael Martinez, Jose Contreras and Justin De Fratus were all placed on the DL.

Roster hopefulls Scott Podsednik, Hector Lunas and Raul Valdes were optioned to Triple-A Lehigh Valley. That's a tough break for Podsednik who had a great spring, and was clearly disappointed when Pierre was picked for the roster. Hopefully he can hang around long enough to earn a promotion when an inevitable injury strikes.

It apears Charlie Manuel will give Pierre a shot at the everyday left field position, and the lead-off spot; at least with Howard and Utley on the shelf. Here's my guess for tomorrow's Opening Day lineup against lefty Eric Bedard:

1. Juan Pierre, LF
2. Placido Polanco, 3B
3. Jimmy Rollins, SS
4. Hunter Pence, EF
5. Shane Victorino, CF
6. John Mayberry Jr., 1B
7. Carlos Ruiz, C
8. Freddy Galvis, 2B
9. Roy Halladay, P

Victorino and Mayberry Jr. could potentially swap positions in Manuel's lineup. After originally stating Jim Thome could play in two games a week, Manuel recently stated that Thome is sore after playing six innings and would likely only play 20 games all season at first base. Hopefully, that's not the case and Thome grows more accustom to playing the field as he continues to get his work in.

This is a great time of year. Opening Day is one of the best days of the season! Hopefully tomorrow's contest is nearly as dramatic and exciting as last season's Opening Day was.

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