We are not too far away from 2008 Opening Day. I think it's about right time to predict 2008 Opening Day Roster again. Barring terrible collapse and injury, This is what I think as follow.
Rotation(5)...I don't think Joe Girardi will put them in this kind of order, but this is the order I will run based on pitching style, limited inning cap, and possible bullpen use. I don't care much about who should be in which slot.
Bullpen(7)...We definitely need a long reliever or spot starter in the bullpen when we have so many young and aging starters. I will try Traber as lefty specialist at the beginning of season. If he can't delivery, we always can call someone up from minor to replace him. Brian Bruney gets a contract and shows determination by losing weight and pitch well enough during spring training. I will give him one more chance. If he fail, we call up someone else as well when you consider we won't rely on him too heavily.
Waiting List:Ross Ohlendorf, Scott Patterson, Jonathan Albaladejo, Chris Britton, Edwar Ramirez, Dan Giese, Darrell Rasner and Jose Veras. Those pitchers I will put them in AAA to hone some pitches they need to work on. If someone in the bullpen doesn't perform well, I will call one of them up.
Long shot: Heath Philips, Kei Igawa(I may need to move him to waiting list. I really think Yankees should try to trade him if they can get some decent value in return), Alan Horne, Daniel McCutchen, Mark Melancon, J.B Cox, Chase Wright, Steven White, Humberto Sanchez, Jeffrey Marquez.
Joba Chamberlain(Setup Man)
Kyle Farnsworth(7.8 inning)
LaTroy Hawkins(7.8 inning)
Jeff Karstens(Long Reliever)
Billy Traber(Lefty Specialist)
Brian Bruney(6.7 inning)
Starting Lineup(9)... I don't think there is any doubt who will be Blue Jay's starter at the Opening day. This is why I will put lefty as much as I can. Once Roy Halladay come out of game or left-hander relievers come in, we can put Shelley Duncan into lineup.
(L) Johnny Damon(LF)-or CF/DH
(R) Derek Jeter(SS)
(L) Bobby Abreu(RF)
(L) Jason Giambi(1B)-or DH
(S) Jorge Posada(C)
(L) Hideki Matsui(DH)-or LF
(L) Robinson Cano(2B)
(S) Melky Cabrera(CF)-or LF
Bench(4)...The last spot I choose INF Cody Ransom among Morgan Ensberg and Brett Gardner for couple of reasons.
I don't think Morgan Ensberg will have enough playing time when you consider how well Shelley Duncan play during spring training. I even feel Shelley Duncan may get starting 1B job instead of Giambi. I rather give Shelley Duncan as many bats as possible, especially when you consider Ensberg only can play 3B/1B position(too many people can play those position). The reason Cashman want Morgan Ensberg is an insurance of Shelley Duncan. Just in case, Shelley Duncan can't keep his production this season, so I won't surprise at Ensberg getting last spot as well if Ransom accept to go to minor.
But, I still think we really need one more INF for defense replacement in late-innings situation or pinch runner because I don't feel too comfortable Betemit is my only infielder replacement for the whole season. I also think We need two in order to take A-Rod and Jeter out of blowout games at the same time or give them and Cano a break once a while.
As Brett Gardner, It's kind of wasting talent to let him sit on the bench when you consider we have 6 outfielders, including Shelley, Melky, Abrea, Matsui, Damon, Ransom. If we have injury or extra need during season, I will call him up.
(S) Wilson Betemit(INF)-I don't think Betemit play SS/2B well
(R) Jose Molina(C)
(R) Shelley Duncan(RF/1B)-I think Shelley play RF better than 1B
(R) Cody Ransom(INF)
What do you guys think?