Guessing the 25-man roster

Postseason rosters are serious business. Look at this team:

Your palms start sweating. The heart palpitates. What if, you think, there isn’t a left-handed specialist available to pitch to Todd Hollandsworth? Good. Gravy. You can’t expect Matt Herges to get a guy like that out, and not just because things would get awfully awkward around the Thanksgiving dinner table. That’s Todd Hollandsworth. And, man, imagine if Juan Pierre were up with two outs in the bottom of the ninth in a tie game. If you put a generic righty out there, Pierre could end the damned game. Just like that. You wouldn’t even know what happened. Stunned. Mouth agape. Pierre circles the bases, fist in the air, as he’s done it again. You would have been outmanaged.

So, obviously, the answer is "carry two left-handed specialists." With both Jason Christiansen and Scott Eyre on the playoff roster, teams can avoid horrifc moments like those. Of course, they’d have to jettison something else of value. Like, oh, a guy who was faster than Bengie Molina rolling uphill, which was a player who was in short supply for the 2003 Giants. I mean, what’s the worst that would happen? One of the slowest players in the league was going to try to score from second on a single and get thrown out to end the playoff series as the fastest person on the 40-man roster watches from the dugout, technically inable to play in the game? Yeah, right.

Ugh.

Postseason rosters: Serious business. Get the obvious names out of the way first:

  1. Buster Posey
  2. Aubrey Huff
  3. Freddy Sanchez
  4. Juan Uribe
  5. Pablo Sandoval
  6. Pat Burrell
  7. Andres Torres
  8. Eli Whiteside
  9. Tim Lincecum
  10. Jonathan Sanchez
  11. Madison Bumgarner
  12. Matt Cain
  13. Brian Wilson
  14. Sergio Romo
  15. Javier Lopez
  16. Santiago Casilla

Those are the complete locks. I used to think Zito was a lock until I heard Bruce Bochy on KNBR today. Zito's not going to start, so the only way he'd make the team is if he were a reliever. With Lopez and Affeldt, there's no real spot for a LOOGY, and Zito isn't really tough on lefties to begin with.

So that leaves the bubble guys:

Nate Schierholtz
Travis Ishikawa
Edgar Renteria
Aaron Rowand
Mike Fontenot
Cody Ross
Jose Guillen

Jeremy Affeldt
Guillermo Mota
Chris Ray
Dan Runzler
Ramon Ramirez
Barry Zito

The "bubble guys" comprise a pretty wide category. I don't think there's any way that Guillen or Ramirez aren't on the final roster, for example, but I just didn't want to assume they were going to make the roster.

With Bochy hinting that the Giants are going to go with an 11-man pitching staff, that leaves room for three pitchers and six hitters.

The Braves have good lefties, unlike the 2003 Marlins, so Affeldt will probably be in. Only one of those bench guys is going to be left off, which makes for an interesting decision.  Here's my guess, and it's pretty close to what I'd actually do myself if it were up to me:

 

  1. Buster Posey
  2. Aubrey Huff
  3. Freddy Sanchez
  4. Juan Uribe
  5. Pablo Sandoval
  6. Pat Burrell
  7. Andres Torres
  8. Jose Guillen
  9. Eli Whiteside
  10. Cody Ross
  11. Aaron Rowand
  12. Nate Schierholtz
  13. Mike Fontenot
  14. Edgar Renteria

  15. Tim Lincecum
  16. Jonathan Sanchez
  17. Madison Bumgarner
  18. Matt Cain
  19. Brian Wilson
  20. Sergio Romo
  21. Javier Lopez
  22. Santiago Casilla
  23. Jeremy Affeldt
  24. Ramon Ramirez
  25. Barry Zito

Zito is the ostensible long man. I'd probably prefer Mota, but that's the only quibble. My guess is that Ishikawa's lefty bat gets passed over for Rowand. That's not the end of the word, but it makes me wish the Giants had a strong lefty pinch-hitter to make the decision easier.

This is much more fun than deciding on the teams we want to root against.

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