Monday, October 31, 2011

Opening Day Roster Predictions: 10-31-11

Happy Halloween Cubs fans! The big news in the National League Central Division today is the retirement of Cardinals manager Tony LaRussa. It will be odd next year when the Cubs/Cards rivalry no longer includes Tony. Congrats to LaRussa on the World Championship and on an outstanding career.

Aramis Ramirez declined his end of the mutual option for 2012. He will test free agency and still could return to the Cubs, but the team is no longer on the hook for the $16 million option or $2 million buyout. Ramirez is looking for a three or four year deal for about $15 million per year.

Each year I make and update my opening day roster predictions for the following season throughout the offseason. The purpose of these predictions is to tell what I think would be the roster if the season started tomorrow. I do not use any players in the predictions that are not currently under control of the club. These predictions give us an idea of how many moves need to be made in order for the Cubs to have a decent roster. It also helps highlight which areas need improvement.

Starting Rotation
1. Matt Garza
2. Ryan Dempster
3. Randy Wells
4. Andrew Cashner
5. Carlos Zambrano

Closer- Carlos Marmol
LH Setup- Sean Marshall
RH Setup- Jeff Samardzija
LH Middle Relief- James Russell
RH Middle Relief- Chris Carpenter
Long Relief- Casey Coleman
Long Relief- Marcos Mateo

Starting Position Players
C- Geovany Soto
1B- Bryan LaHair
2B- Darwin Barney
SS- Starlin Castro
3B- DJ LeMahieu
LF- Alfonso Soriano
CF- Marlon Byrd
RF- Tyler Colvin

Koyie Hill
Jeff Baker
Blake DeWitt
Tony Campana
Lou Montanez

Cubs that are Free Agents
Kerry Wood
Aramis Ramirez
Carlos Pena
Reed Johnson
Rodrigo Lopez
Ramon Ortiz
John Grabow

I'll post more projections as the Cubs make moves this offseason!

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