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Giants set 25-man roster

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13 pitchers and a punchless bench. If it looks familiar, it's because it is.

Kelby Tomlinson's outfield audition didn't go so well, but given the Giants' needs, he still has a shot at a bullpen role.
Kelby Tomlinson's outfield audition didn't go so well, but given the Giants' needs, he still has a shot at a bullpen role.
Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

The Giants made their roster trims yesterday ahead of the season opener in Milwaukee. If you like watching Mac Williamson and/or Jarrett Parker, then buy your River Cats tickets today!

Also sent down? Chris Stratton (aka The Only Good Starting Pitcher In Camp), Mike Broadway (The Best Reliever In Camp), Ty Blach (About As Good As Josh Osich), and Clayton Blackburn (The Next and Future Prospect). None of the six non-roster invitees made it, either. Farewell, Connor Gilles--Conor Gillas--you know who I'm talking about.

So that leaves an Opening Day roster of:

Catchers
Buster Posey
Trevor Brown

Infielders
Ehire Adrianza
Brandon Belt
Brandon Crawford
Matt Duffy
Joe Panik
Kelby Tomlinson

Outfielders
Gregor Blanco
Angel Pagan
Hunter Pence
Denard Span

Starting pitchers
Madison Bumgarner
Matt Cain
Johnny Cueto
Jake Peavy 
Jeff Samardzija

Relievers
Santiago Casilla
Cory Gearrin
Chris Heston
George Kontos
Javier Lopez
Josh Osich
Sergio Romo
Hunter Strickland

Right off the bat, that thirteen pitcher thing jumps out at you. They're clearly going for quantity over quality. The Giants do this fairly frequently, even when things are going well (just search the phrase "Giants + 13 pitchers for the time being"), but due to the painfully lackluster performances from the majority of the arms in camp this seems to make a lot of sense to start the season. Add to that, the Giants have only two off days in April which bookend 16 consecutive games, the first 6 of those being against the Rockies and the Dodgers, and it's easy to see why Bruce Bochy wants so many bandages on hand. Of course, none of that matters if they can't get outs.

And while the offense appears primed to carry the team once again, the bench remains a bit of a head-scratcher. Gorkys Hernandez sort of replicates Gregor Blanco, so his lack of inclusion tracks to a large degree, but the distinct lack of power is double-reinforced with Tomlinson and Adrianza, who survives another spring clearly because the Giants think his tools are too valuable -- probably in that "we don't want him to become a contributor for another team and make us look bad" sort of way, but in the meantime, the Giants will keep him as the 25th man who will play so infrequently that his slumps and defensive lapses will be his biggest contributions.

Or maybe not, and this roster will sail through April. It's certainly a top 5 Opening Day configuration and it's certainly aligned with the Giants' intentions that were forged in the offseason. If I had to keep 13 pitchers and Adrianza, then the only change I'd make is a swap of Tomlinson for Parker. I'm bearish on Parker's ability to hit any non-fastball pitch but bullish on the Giants getting screwed without power on the bench.