Making sense of today’s roster moves


In case you missed there was officially 6 roster transactions taken by the Mariners today:

  1. Catcher Chris Gimenez was placed on the 15 day DL with a strained oblique.
  2. Catcher Josh Bard was recalled from Tacoma.
  3. AA Pitcher Edward Paredes designated (removed fromt he 40 man roster) to make room for Bard.
  4. Pitcher Erik Bedard was placed on the 15 man DL with a strained knee.
  5. Catcher Jose Yepez was recalled from Tacoma.
  6. AAA Pitcher Chaz Roe designated (removed fromt he 40 man roster) to make room for Yepez.
  7. There will have to be additional minor league moves, as the Raniers now have no catchers on their roster.

That’s a lot to process. First, neither pitcher designated for assignment is any good, and I expect both to stay in the organization since any team that claimed them would have to put them on their own 40 man roster, and they aren’t worth the spot.

Second, the Mariners now have 3 catchers on the big league roster. Olivo is still recovering from the leg cramps that caused him to leave last night’s game. Bard was recalled to be the backup and play in tonight’s game, but is himself dealing with a very painful toe injury. Yepez is here for insurance, though I don’t expect him to stay up with the big club for very long.

Lastly, Bedard to the DL is a bad thing, but at least it’s not a shoulder injury again. It’s a knee strain, and what i’m hearing is that it’s very minor, and will be back as soon as he’s able to come of the DL. In fact, the Mariners say he’s only going to miss one scheduled start, though since his rotation spot will come around twice while he’s gone it is a little confused.

Here’s how I see this all going down, (This is all speculation on my part. We’ll have wait until after today’s game for Wedge to give us the official plan):

  • Yepez starts tomorrow to give Bard’s foot and Olivo’s legs more rest. Olivo then returns as the starter, with Bard as his backup once Bard’s toe is healed.
  • With tomorrow being an off day, the M’s just skip Bedard’s spot in the rotation this next time around.
  • When Bedard would normally be scheduled to start again, Yepez is sent back to Tacoma and Blake Beavan is recalled to start in Bedard’s place.
  • Once Bedard is ready to come of the DL, Beavan goes back down to Tacoma.
  • He’s the real kicker: once Gimenez is all healed up, he reports to Tacoma, leaving Bard in Seattle.

I’d felt for some time now that Bard was the better fit with the Mariners. Gimenez was brought up instead of Bard because he could play the outfield as well as catcher. When this team was without Franklin Gutierrez in center, and with Milton Bradely in LF and DH, the versatility made sense. Now, the M’s need a better backup catcher so Olivo can be rested more often. I believe the only reason this swap wasn’t done sooner was because Bard wasn’t on the 40 man roster, but the Gimenez injury has removed that obstacle.