Another week means we’re that much closer to opening day. The roster has just about taken shape, despite the fact that there are still 40 guys in camp.
Here is how big league camp breaks down with two weeks to go. (Projected 25 man roster players in BOLD)
- The outfield appears to be coming down to one spot as the fifth outfielder. That spot needs to have the ability to play all three spots and hit off the bench. With Colvin’s showcase spring, he’s the guy if the season started right now and I’ve actually come to like that. In fact, I thought about the idea of shopping a guy like Fukudome and going with Colvin full time in RF. Would you go for it?
- The infield appears to be set except for one spot. The question is going to come down to how comfortable Lou feels with Fontenot as the backup SS to Theriot. If he fits that spot, it would free up a roster spot for a guy like Chad Tracy to show he still has a Major League at bit. I believe Fontenot has shown enough to make me comfortable with him as our backup SS. I’d rather roll the dice with him and leave Blanco off the roster in favor of a bigger, more powerful bat off the bench.
- Pitching staff is set save one spot at the end. It looks like all four starters battling for the last two spots in the rotation will make the opening day roster, with two of them going to the bullpen (yes, that includes Carlos Silva making the roster). Of the candidates left battling for that last spot, James Russell has been head and shoulders above the rest and probably deserves the first crack at sticking. I’d like to see Gaub get a shot, but he hasn’t pitched well enough to justify a spot over Russell at this point.
Deadspin Question of the Day
In response to your post about having to take the dive in any game against a child, I have to say I refuse to abide. I’m 23 and was playing checkers with my 7-year-old niece this past summer when the opportunity for a QUADRUPLE-JUMP presented itself. Seeing that this NEVER happens, I took full advantage and jumped the [crap] out of those checkers, claiming victory for the good guys.
My niece was non-too happy and my sister declared me a jerk. Is she right?
I’m not a subscriber to the let the kid win theory. Call me a tool for doing it, but every time I play Memory with my four year old, I go all in and try to beat him down. In fact, during the most recent battle, my son was winning something like 15 matches to 5 about midway through the game. I was trying my hardest to get a match, but found myself missing by a card each time only to watch him smile widely, talk a little trash and find the match I had just failed to make. As the beat down wore on, I actually started to get frustrated and a tad bit mad, not at him, but at my lack of ability. In the end, I went on a great run to end the game and narrowly pull out a victory. I was proud of how well my son played and I think me playing hard will teach him how to win as well as how to lose with class because he’ll see that I don’t put the other person down or things like that. Kids need to be taught how to lose and how to fail.
Along the same lines, one of my biggest pet peeves in sports is when a losing team or losing coach complains that the other team ran up the score. The topic came up on Saturday night as one of my buddies said that Kentucky and John Calipari was running up the score by still shooting 3′s late in the game with a big lead. I had no problem with it for a few reasons. First, sports is just as much a mental game as a physical game. In a tournament that seems to show anyone is vulnerable (see Kansas), a team needs as much of a mental advantage as possible. By running up the score, a team can make themselves that much more intimidating and seemingly unbeatable down the stretch. In addition, it keeps the confidence up on your side. Second, people that complain that the other team ran up the score are pansies. If you don’t want them to score, play some frickin defense. Don’t like the big lead? Keep them out of the end zone. People need to learn how to fail and deal with disappointment. They need to learn to use that as fuel to get better and come back stronger. Stop shielding people. It just raises wimps.