Well, we talk about when camp open that the Giants’ roster battles like would lack drama this spring.
And that’s a good thing.
It means that there weren’t any big injuries that would prompt some drama.
The Giants made moves on Sunday as they head into the final week of spring training that pretty much locked their opening day 25-man roster.
Because the Giants open the season with 23 games in the first 24 days – a very good thing for us fans, but not so great for the players – the Giants decided to keep 13 pitchers.
We thought that the acquisition of strong arms like Jeff Samardzija and Johnny Cueto might preclude the Giants from opening the season with a short bench. But the schedule changed their thinking.
There really aren’t many chances that the weather could help with their busy early schedule – perhaps a three-game set in Colorado in the middle of the month.
So Cory Gearrin makes the club to reinforce the bullpen. It also keeps the Giants from a tough decision, as Gearrin was out of options. This will at least buy the Giants a couple of weeks to make a call on that.
It also means the Giants won’t carry a fifth outfielder. That means Mac Williamson and Jarrett Parker will open the season in Sacramento.
Also heading to Fresno is Conor Gillaspie, despite having a very good spring. But Gillaspie is a corner infielder (3B-1B) and other options – Ehire Adrianza and Kelby Tomlinson – provide more flexibility. Plus Gillaspie would need to be added to the 40-man roster, which is currently full. Tomlinson’s strong push late in the spring made that decision easier for the Giants.
That leaves one decision that really isn’t a decision at all. And that decision involves a backup catcher: Trevor Brown or Andrew Susac. Susac hasn’t played in a week because of his surgically repaired wrist, while Brown picked up the Barney Nugent Award as being the most impressive player in his first big league camp.
So barring any developments in the final week, here is your 2016 Opening Day roster.
Starting lineup: 1B Brandon Belt, 2B Joe Panik, SS Brandon Crawford, 3B Matt Duffy, C Buster Posey, LF Angel Pagan, CF Denard Span, RF Hunter Pence.
Bench: OF Gregor Blanco, IF Ehire Andriaza, IF Kelby Tomlinson, C Trevor Brown.
Starting rotation: LH Madison Bumgarner, RH Jeff Samardzija, RH Johnny Cueto, RH Jake Peavy, RH Matt Cain.
Bullpen: RH Santiago Casilla, RH Sergio Romo, RH Hunter Stickland, RH George Kontos, RH Chris Heston, RH Cory Gearrin, LH Javier Lopez, LH Josh Osich.