Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Projecting the Reds' roster for the NLDS

The Reds, particularly GM Walt Jocketty, will be faced with some difficult roster decisions pretty soon. That's because they will have to finalize their 25-man roster for the NLDS between now and the weekend. As it currently stands, Cincinnati will open up postseason play in San Francisco on Saturday as the No. 2 seed.

I don't have a say in the makeup of the roster, obviously, but I do have a right to an opinion. With that in mind, here's how I would put together Cincy's 25-man roster if I could:

Catchers (2): Ryan Hanigan & Dioner Navarro

Infielders (7): Zack Cozart, Miguel Cairo, Todd Frazier, Brandon Phillips, Scott Rolen, Wilson Valdez, & Joey Votto

Outfielders (5): Jay Bruce, Chris Heisey, Ryan Ludwick, Xavier Paul, & Drew Stubbs

Starting Rotation (4): Johnny Cueto, Mat Latos, Bronson Arroyo, & Homer Bailey

Bullpen (7): RHP Jose Arredondo, RHP Jonathan Broxton, LHP Aroldis Chapman, RHP J.J. Hoover, RHP Sam LeCure, LHP Sean Marshall, & RHP Mike Leake

A few notes:
+ The three biggest names I left off were Alfredo Simon, Devin Mesoraco, & Logan Ondrusek.
+ Leake took the spot formerly occupied by Simon. If the Reds get in a situation where their starter makes an early exit, or the game is extremely out of reach, Leake will prove valuable to eat up innings and save the other arms in the 'pen.
+ Navarro has outplayed Mez since being promoted from Triple-A Louisville, and he has playoff experience. So, that's why I gave him the nod there. Navarro also provides a switch-hitting bat off the bench.
+ Hoover has performed better than Ondrusek recently. Thus he deserves a spot on the playoff roster.
+ Dusty Baker would only have two lefties at his disposal here, but I feel like Chapman and Marshall are good enough. The Reds could surprise some folks and include rookie southpaw Tony Cingrani, although that seems to be a longshot at this point.
+ The bench doesn't look incredibly strong with the likes of Cairo, Valdez, etc. However, the Reds have gotten this far with a weak bench, so what makes us think they need a better one now?

I doubt this is the exact way the roster looks comes Saturday, but I'd like to think it's pretty close. Arroyo and Latos will probably flip-flop in the rotation (for reasons that I don't quite understand but whatever), and Ondrusek will likely get the nod over the rookie Hoover, but other than that I believe this roster to be pretty accurate.

And just for good measure, here's how I would pencil in the starting lineup for Game One:

2B Phillips
C Hanigan
1B Votto
LF Ludwick
RF Bruce
3B Frazier
CF Heisey
SS Cozart
SP Cueto

What do you all think?

1 comment:

Kevin Mitchell said...

I personally like this lineup, but I also don't think it will happen. Switch Hanigan down to the 7 spot, Cozart up to 2, then unfortunately Heisey will not be there, Dusty loves Stubbs defense too much to keep him out of the lineup, but will bat him 8th.