Wednesday, March 14, 2007

roster picture settling

with the first round of cuts behind, players likely to break with the club are going to be getting more time on the field this week as the battle for the few final roster spots heats up.

the trib weighs in with comments from captain lou. the synopsis:

  • * wade miller is in the lead again for the fifth starter spot; he hit 90 on the gun and allowed two in four innings; lou says:

    "[Miller's] quietly doing a really nice job," Piniella said after a four-inning, two-run outing Tuesday. "He's getting a little better every time out. He knows how to pitch. You have to like what you see."

  • * neal cotts, having a singularly awful spring, is bullpen bound:

    "I don't think we have enough time in two weeks to stretch everybody out," Piniella said. "I think what we'll do with Cotts is settle him into the bullpen."

  • * mark prior to extended spring;

  • * angel guzman probably to iowa, though it isn't settled between him and miller:

    "I'll let you know Friday after Guzman," Piniella said of an outing against the White Sox.

  • * and ronny fucking cedeno for the 25th man, for the love of any other backup middle infielder (here's looking at you, tomas perez):

    "I see an athletic kid who has a lot of athletic ability but who needs some polish," Piniella said. "Anybody can play at the big-league level. Can you play at the big-league level to win? That's really what you look for."

    Piniella worked with Cedeno before Tuesday's game on hitting the ball toward right-center, which could cut down on his 109 strikeouts last season.

    "I have to work on a couple of things, like making an adjustment at home plate, hitting with two strikes," Cedeno said. "I can do that."

    this page begs to differ, young man.

all this is bad news for felix pie, perez and several others who figure to start 2007 somewhere in the cub minors or beyond.

the initial roster projection at this point would seem to be as follows:

1Carlos ZambranoRyan DempsterScott Eyre*Michael BarrettDerrek LeeMatt Murton
2Ted Lilly*Bob HowryWill Ohman*Henry BlancoMark DerosaAlfonso Soriano
3Jason MarquisKerry WoodNeal Cotts*Cesar Izturis**Jacque Jones*
4Rich Hill*Rocky CherryAramis RamirezCliff Floyd*
5Wade MillerRoberto NovoaRyan TheriotDaryle Ward*
6Angel GuzmanMichael WuertzRonny CedenoAngel Pagan**
7Mark PriorBuck Coats*

probables are in blue, unlikelies are in gray. there's some chance the team would break with twelve pitchers, endangering cedeno and helping either cherry or novoa (as wuertz still hasn't thrown this spring).

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