The Mariners confirmed what their 25-man roster will look like to start the season. It is as follows:
C – Adam Moore, Rob Johnson
1B – Casey Kotchman
2B – Chone Figgins
3B – Jose Lopez
SS – Jack Wilson
IF – Matt Tuiasosopo
OF – Milton Bradley, Franklin Gutierrez, Ichiro, Eric Byrnes, Ryan Langerhans
DH – Ken Griffey Jr., Mike Sweeney
SP – Felix Hernandez, Ian Snell, Ryan Rowland-Smith, Doug Fister, Jason Vargas
RP – David Aardsma, Mark Lowe, Brandon League, Shawn Kelley, Sean White, Kanekoa Texeira
Not really any big surprises here. The catcher situation was a little bit foggy earlier in the offseason, but Josh Bard didn’t impress anyone this Spring, making it pretty clear that Moore and Johnson would get the two spots. Should be interesting to see how playing time is divided. The backup infielder role once again falls to Matt Tuiasosopo, much like it did last year – it was between Tui and Josh Wilson, and as I’ve gone over before, it didn’t really matter which one they chose. Hopefully Jack Hannahan has a speedy recovery. Lastly, the Mariners opted to start the year with Cliff Lee on the DL. This also shouldn’t come as much of a surprise, as all of you should have been preparing for an April without Cliff Lee.
I think that all things considered, this roster looks pretty solid. Comparing it to 2009, the bullpen is better, the lineup isn’t filled with hackers, the excellent defense that won us 85 games is mostly intact, and the rotation is going to look pretty damn good if we at some point add Lee and Bedard. Opening day is tomorrow, guys. It’s going to be a crazy year.