A look at the Yankees potential Opening Day roster

Yesterday was the first day that position players had to report to spring training, but the first day is really just them reporting to camp and taking physicals. So today is the real start of full blown spring training and we are just six days away from games.

On this first full day of spring training, let’s take a look at what the Yankees Opening Day roster is expected to look like. At first glace, it appears that there are 24 roster spots already locked down.

STARTING ROTATION: CC Sabathia, Hiroki Kuroda, Michael Pineda, Ivan Nova, Freddy Garcia/Phil Hughes.

BULLPEN: Mariano Rivera, David Robertson, Rafael Soriano, Boone Logan, Cory Wade, Freddy Garcia/Phil Hughes.

STARTING LINEUP: Derek Jeter, Curtis Granderson, Robinson Cano, Alex Rodriguez, Mark Teixeira, Nick Swisher, Raul Ibanez/Andruw Jones, Russell Martin, Brett Gardner.

BENCH: Eduardo Nunez, Francisco Cervelli, Raul Ibanez/Andruw Jones, Eric Chavez.

BULLPEN CANDIDATES FOR 25TH SPOT: Manny Delcarmen, LHP Cesar Cabral, George Kontos, Brad Meyers, LHP Clay Rapada, and LHP Mike O’Connor.

BENCH CANDIDATES FOR 25TH SPOT: Chris Dickerson, Justin Maxwell, Russell Branyan, and Bill Hall.

There may be more candidates that get opportunities if there are injuries or a trade, but it looks like there will be about 10 players fighting for the final roster spot. Doing the math there, and that’s going to be a lot of unhappy players.

There is a lot of time between now and the start of the season though. No matter how good it looks right now there is almost certainly going to be something that comes up and affects how the actual Opening Day roster ends up.

Question: Who will land that final roster spot? It seems likely that they could go with a second lefty, but the bench candidates all have their merits as well and it isn’t impossible to envision Delcarmen or Kontos stealing the final spot with an exceptional spring.

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7 Responses to A look at the Yankees potential Opening Day roster

  1. Fred says:

    I'd say Clay Rapada wins that spot as a LOOGY. His splits were phenomenal last year, and it could take pressure off of Boone Logan.

    If a bench player is going to make it, its either going to be Hall for his defensive versatility, or Dickerson who is out of options and played well in limited time last year.

    • Matt_DC says:

      I really like Dickerson as well. Not sure there is room on this team but he did play well given the opportunity.

  2. Bronx_Knight says:

    Well-called, Fred. Man, I looked at Rapada's splits, and they made my head spin. 6 ERA overall last year, but an insane .104 BA against when pitching to lefties. For his career, his BAA is .153. He's horrific against righties, though — last year his BAA to righties was almost .700!

    Looks like he could be very effective as a one-out left-handed specialist, like Graeme Lloyd in 1997/1998.

  3. yankeebill14 says:

    i would love to see how russell branyan can hit in yankee stadium it is made for him he could be that bat off the bench we did not have late last year

    • gordybravo says:

      Yes yankeebill14 I also would like to see Branyan coming of the bench.He would make the other manager think twice. I also like Dickerson.All he needs is playing time,he can play good -D,and would be a good pinch runner,and can steal some basses coming of the bench.

  4. marc_nini says:

    Dickerson is good, but I personally really like what Colin Curtis can do, he had a good spring last year and i think he may be a little better defensively. The truth of the matter is that its gonna be a pitcher and Clay Rapada seems like the only choice. It would be nice to have a good one-out left specialist again.

  5. bombers says:

    It's only until the all star break because if Joba was ready to pitch now there would be no room for a 25th man debate.