We’re within two weeks of Opening Day. Here’s the latest on the projected 25-man roster …
Starting pitchers (5):
On track: Clayton Kershaw, Chad Billingsley and Aaron Harang.
Any reservations? Ted Lilly missed a bullpen session today with neck stiffness, and Chris Capuano had a hamstring twinge in today’s start, but neither is expected to affect their roster status. If anything worsens.
Next in line: Nathan Eovaldi, with a 0.84 ERA and 12 baserunners in 10 2/3 spring innings, would step up. Keep in mind the Dodgers won’t use a fifth starter until April 14.
Relief pitchers (7):
On track: Kenley Jansen, Javy Guerra, Todd Coffey and Scott Elbert.
Any reservations? Mike MacDougal has allowed six runs, six hits and seven walks in five innings with one strikeout in March. Matt Guerrier has thrown only two innings so far this spring.
Next in line: There’s at least one spot that’s open, and it will probably go to veteran Jamey Wright, because Josh Lindblom has minor-league options. But in addition to those two, John Grabow and Scott Rice are still alive. Don’t be surprised if Guerrier ends up on the disabled list to buy the Dodgers more decision time on this group.
On track: A.J. Ellis and Matt Treanor.
On track: James Loney, Mark Ellis, Dee Gordon, Juan Uribe, Adam Kennedy
Any reservations? Jerry Hairston Jr. is battling shoulder inflammation apparently related to an October 2011 injury, as Eric Stephen of True Blue L.A. and Tony Jackson of ESPNLosAngeles.com note.
Next in line: Justin Sellers, already a candidate to be the team’s 25th man, would move up a spot in the pecking order if Hairston can’t make it – assuming Sellers himself can stay healthy. Corner infielder Josh Fields continues to make a case with some power in his past and a .937 spring OPS. And making a late bid, according to Ken Gurnick of MLB.com, is Luis Cruz, 7 for 20 with a triple and home run this spring. However, Cruz only has a .535 OPS in 169 career major-league plate appearances and a .301 OBP in Triple-A last year.
On track: Andre Ethier, Matt Kemp, Juan Rivera, Tony Gwynn Jr.
In addition to the folks mentioned above, there’s Trent Oeltjen, who held the spot throughout the second half of 2011 and is out of options. Some feel Cory Sullivan is in the running. One guy you can forget about is Jerry Sands, who has combined his remaining minor-league options with a terrible March.
And then after the season begins, the roulette wheel spins agaon.