The Padres are about 60% of the way through their Cactus League season and that’s as good a time as any to take a look at how the roster might be shaping up?
Major questions at the start of Spring Training are now only slightly less major because while some guys have faded in the battle for Opening Day spots others have surged.
So here’s a still too early prediction of what the 25-man Opening Day roster will look like for the 2018 San Diego Padres:
Starting Pitchers (5)
Bryan Mitchell (RHP)
Clayton Richard (LHP)
Dinelson Lamet (RHP)
Chris Young (RHP)
Tyson Ross (RHP)
Mitchell and Richard are guarantees. Lamet has been good enough to keep the inside track he had on a rotation spot. Luis Perdomo has not been good this spring while Young has been very good so I could see CY taking that spot. For the 5th spot, as good as Joey Lucchesi and Eric Lauer have been, it’s likely they’ll start in the minors to extend a little bit and Ross has shown enough to give him a starting spot and see who it goes.
Relief Pitchers (7)
Brad Hand (LHP)
Craig Stammen (RHP)
Kirby Yates (RHP)
Kazuhisa Makita (RHP)
Kyle McGrath (LHP)
Colten Brewer (RHP)
Adam Cimber (RHP)
Certainly not the group we expected in mid-February. While Carter Capps (if he’s ready health-wise), Buddy Baumann, or Phil Maton could still take spots here, Brewer and Cimber have been much better in games this spring. If we’re going by performance the new guys are the ones who have earned a spot.
Hedges is the starter but Ellis brings a nice veteran presence to the clubhouse. Plus he knows the Dodgers (and NL West) extremely well so his experience would be a nice addition.
This is the group I feel most confident about. All of these guys can play and are showing extremely well.
Pirela will double as another 2nd baseman to get his bat in the lineup. You may be curious why Hunter Renfroe’s name is not on this list. It’s because I think Cordero is the more versatile option. Both strike out way too much and Renfroe’s power is unmatched but Cordero is better defensively and, since winning the Dominican Winter League MVP Award, has been making more consistent contact so I see him as the choice at least to start the season.