The State of The Pile

The list of pitchers still in camp can be seen below the fold of Jeff's latest post concerning the demotion of Charlie Haeger and Manny Delcarmen. There are now 15 pitchers left in camp who already have a 40-man roster spot and seven pitchers left who do not. By all accounts, 12 of these 22 men will don a Mariners uniform in Oakland on 1 April. Two more will don Mariner uniforms in Seattle in a cruel April Fool's joke. One will experience a fugue and never be seen again. The other seven will cease to exist in a singularity of Minor League depression.

The Mariners' 40-man roster is currently full. That is not to say there isn't driftwood on it, but it does mean that for any of the NRIs to make the team, somebody else has to go. That might not present a hurdle for the management, but it is worth considering that it might.

Of course, despite my prior thinking that Dan Cortes was a lock to make the roster, we do have some actual people whom we are fairly certain will make the cuts. Felix, League, Fister, Vargas and Bedard are on the team if healthy. Aardsma will make the more exclusive 15-day disabled list team out of Spring Training so we can remove him from contention as well as Nate Robertson.

We know the fifth rotation spot is down to French, Pauley and Pineda. If Pineda doesn't win it, he'll go to Tacoma, but French and/or Pauley could end up in the bullpen. Tacoma needs a rotation too however. Removing the more sure bets leaves us with fourteen players for the six relief roles. Big thanks to Ryan Divish for the updated info.

39      PAULEY, David   RHP
69      FLORES, Jose    RHP
71      LUEKE, Josh     RHP
73      WILHELMSEN, Tom RHP
25      FRENCH, Luke    LHP
37      JIMENEZ, Cesar  LHP
49      OLSON, Garrett  LHP
77      LAFFEY, Aaron   LHP
(NRIs)
33      BAUTISTA, Denny RHP
41      MILLER, Justin RHP
46      RAY, Chris     RHP
50      WRIGHT, Jamey RHP
59      CASTRO, Fabio  LHP
66      RING, Royce    LHP

A big majority here believes that Josh Lueke is going to survive and given the completely underwhelming nature of the other 13, I tend to agree. Personally, I think Aaron Laffey and at least one of the Luke French/David Pauley duo make it as well.

What that leaves for the last three spots is a mix of starters who failed, starters who failed worse and relievers who failed on other teams. The pile has turned from a metaphor primarily about the blandness and sheer size of the pitching camp into a more accurate description of the skills those who remain bring the team. Jose Flores versus Fabio Castro versus Justin Miller? Oh, Mariners, you so know how I get my kicks.

18 MAR UPDATE: Olson's gone

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