The San Francisco Giants have announced their 26-player roster for their five-game NLDS series against the Los Angeles Dodgers, and the most notable exclusion is right-handed pitcher Johnny Cueto. Fellow right-handed pitcher Jay Jackson also missed out on the roster, as they are the only two who ended the year on the active roster to be omitted from the playoff group.
Right-handed pitchers Kervin Castro and Zack Littell, as well as outfielders Alex Dickerson and Steven Duggar all made the roster. They were seen as four players that were likely on the fringe.
The Giants opted for an uneven roster, with 12 pitchers to 14 position players. That makes a lot of sense, given that rotations are shortened to four pitchers, and the bullpen will be rested prior to the first, third, and fifth games of the series.
Still, it’s a little surprising that the Giants left off Cueto. Not because of the season he was having, as he was decidedly mediocre and just returned from an injury, but because they don’t have anyone in the bullpen who can stretch it out for more than two innings. With the extra innings free runner rule removed during the postseason, there’s a chance of a game going deep into the night, and having someone in the Yusmeiro Petit role could be beneficial.
But the Giants deemed it not necessary, and are happy to move forward with Castro and Littell, who both had impressive seasons, despite the former being just 22 with 10 career games, and the latter having a few rough outings.
Here, then, is your 26-player NLDS roster. Keep in mind that the Giants cannot tinker with the roster unless they place someone on the Injured List, and if they do replace someone it will come from a taxi squad that is permitted to have up to nine players. They get to choose a new roster for the NLCS, should they advance.
Tommy La Stella
LaMonte Wade Jr.