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Hitmen77
03-10-2011, 12:00 PM
The Sox have only a few spots that aren't locked up already. I thought it would be interesting to track the progress of guys who are vying for those open spots as we make our way through March.

As of now, the guys listed below (barring an unforeseen injury or trade) are a lock for the opening day roster.Starters:
1. Pierzynski
2. Konerko
3. Beckham
4. Ramirez
5. Pierre
6. Rios
7. Quentin
8. Dunn
9. 3B
Bench:
10. Castro
11. Vizquel
12. Teahen (like it or not)13. 4th OF
Starting pitchers:
14. Jackson
15. Buehrle
16. Danks
17. Floyd
18. Peavy **
Bullpen:
19. Crain
20. Thornton
21. Santos
22. Sale
23. Pena
24. Ohman
25. reliever

That leaves 4 spots in question.

3B: I didn't include Morel as a "lock", but the Sox really don't have a good "Plan B" here especially the way Teahen has been racking up the errors already this spring. Question: What will the Sox do if Morel looks like he's really struggling at the plate the rest of this spring?

Bench: The main candidates for this spot appear to be Lillibridge, Milledge, Viciedo, De Aza.

Bullpen spot: Who is in the running for this spot? As the spring progresses, who will start to make a case for winning this spot?

Peavy: He's looked good so far, but if he starts the season on the DL, who takes the 5th starter role - even if it's just for a few starts?

doublem23
03-10-2011, 12:01 PM
Since the Sox just optioned Harrell to AAA I would assume Humber is your 5th starter if Peavy is not ready to go Opening Day

DirtySox
03-10-2011, 12:05 PM
3B: Morel will be playing 3B. I expect plenty of Omar too.

Bench: It will be either De Aza or Lillibridge since they are out of options. Milledge on a minor league deal can be sent to Charlotte as injury insurance. Viciedo will be getting much needed reps in the field and at the plate in AAA.

Bullpen: Not too many viable options here. I'm going to go with Anthony Carter who has looked solid so far.

5th Starter: Harrell was terrible as expected, Leesman isn't ready, so it seems like Humber is the best of the bad.

sox1970
03-10-2011, 12:34 PM
Humber is facing a pretty good Rangers lineup today. A good outing could go a long way for his chances.

russ99
03-10-2011, 12:39 PM
3B: Morel will be playing 3B. I expect plenty of Omar too.

Bench: It will be either De Aza or Lillibridge since they are out of options. Milledge on a minor league deal can be sent to Charlotte as injury insurance. Viciedo will be getting much needed reps in the field and at the plate in AAA.

Bullpen: Not too many viable options here. I'm going to go with Anthony Carter who has looked solid so far.

5th Starter: Harrell was terrible as expected, Leesman isn't ready, so it seems like Humber is the best of the bad.

3B - It's really early but Teahen is hitting well at .500 and Morel is hitting .176.

Obviously Teahen is a liability defensively and has given up tons of errors so far, but at what point would his bat outweigh his glove, especially if Morel struggles during the season? The Sox have historically not been patient with rookies in contending years...

Omar shouldn't play every day, but is useful as a defensive replacement and can back up all IF positions.

Bench - Lillibridge is versatile (all positions except C and 1B) and the speed guy off the bench, so I'd think he'd stay unless De Aza or Milledge really have great springs.

So Castro, Omar and probably Lilliridge are in, and it's between De Aza, Milledge and Viciedo for the last spot.

I wouldn't count out Viciedo, as he's hit very well and the Sox may prefer him in a comfort zone in the bigs around Ramirez, Omar, Ozzie and Cora over playing every day in Charlotte. That worked pretty well for Alexei. Plus the Sox could play him a few times a week at RF, LF and DH and keep regulars fresh.

Pen - Everything's set except roles and the last spot. Carter's looked good so far, and Infante, Dolsi and Gray have not. A wild card could be Shane Lindsay, if they think Carter should stay in the minors. I'd expect Thornton will close, and Sale/Crain setup, unless there's a reason to stack it differently.

5th Starter - At this point, none. If Peavy can't go right away, they shorten the rotation the first 3-4 weeks and Pena or Sale can spot start. If Humber impresses the next 2 weeks, that could change.

Domeshot17
03-10-2011, 12:45 PM
Tony Pena was worse as a starter than as a reliever. He really should never be allowed to start, ever again.

TomBradley72
03-10-2011, 12:58 PM
Morel at 3rd- with Vizquel getting more playing time if he struggles
Lillibridge- need a late game pinch runner, plays both OF/IF, out of options
Peavy looks good to be in the rotation
No idea for the last spot in the bullpen
Viciedo and Milledge to AAA to play every day- call ups in the event of injury, etc.

Irishsox1
03-10-2011, 04:09 PM
I'm kinda out of the loop but was it announced that Thornton is the closer?

russ99
03-10-2011, 04:18 PM
I'm kinda out of the loop but was it announced that Thornton is the closer?

Not yet. Ozzie's waiting on that probably until the last week of ST, and for a good reason.

If Peavy ends up not being ready to go on opening week, then all the pitchers roles could end being shifted, due to either Sale/Pena needing to spot start or one less arm in the pen to allow for an extra starter on the roster.

bridgeportcopper
03-10-2011, 04:43 PM
3B - It's really early but Teahen is hitting well at .500 and Morel is hitting .176.

Obviously Teahen is a liability defensively and has given up tons of errors so far, but at what point would his bat outweigh his glove, especially if Morel struggles during the season? The Sox have historically not been patient with rookies in contending years...

Omar shouldn't play every day, but is useful as a defensive replacement and can back up all IF positions.

Bench - Lillibridge is versatile (all positions except C and 1B) and the speed guy off the bench, so I'd think he'd stay unless De Aza or Milledge really have great springs.

So Castro, Omar and probably Lilliridge are in, and it's between De Aza, Milledge and Viciedo for the last spot.

I wouldn't count out Viciedo, as he's hit very well and the Sox may prefer him in a comfort zone in the bigs around Ramirez, Omar, Ozzie and Cora over playing every day in Charlotte. That worked pretty well for Alexei. Plus the Sox could play him a few times a week at RF, LF and DH and keep regulars fresh.

Pen - Everything's set except roles and the last spot. Carter's looked good so far, and Infante, Dolsi and Gray have not. A wild card could be Shane Lindsay, if they think Carter should stay in the minors. I'd expect Thornton will close, and Sale/Crain setup, unless there's a reason to stack it differently.

5th Starter - At this point, none. If Peavy can't go right away, they shorten the rotation the first 3-4 weeks and Pena or Sale can spot start. If Humber impresses the next 2 weeks, that could change.

Count him out....fractured right thumb - out for 6 weeks!

DirtySox
03-10-2011, 04:43 PM
Count him out....fractured right thumb - out for 6 weeks!

http://a3.twimg.com/profile_images/934235221/Maria2_normal.jpg
scottmerkin (http://twitter.com/#%21/scottmerkin) Scott Merkin
Viciedo has a fractured right thumb. Expect out 3 to 4 weeks. More to come on whitesox.com
2 minutes ago (http://twitter.com/#%21/scottmerkin/status/45976442680512512)

sox1970
03-10-2011, 04:46 PM
So basically it's down to Milledge or Lillibridge for the 25th spot on the team.

3 weeks to go.

DirtySox
03-10-2011, 04:48 PM
So basically it's down to Milledge or Lillibridge for the 25th spot on the team.

3 weeks to go.

And De Aza.

sox1970
03-10-2011, 04:49 PM
And De Aza.

Yeah, that's true. I always think of him as Pierre's back up in Charlotte, but I suppose he has a shot.

Noneck
03-10-2011, 05:08 PM
It has to be between De Aza and Lillibridge both dont have options and can play CF.

Hitmen77
03-11-2011, 11:27 AM
When Peavy is ready to return to the active regular season roster, whether it be on opening day or some later date, does Phil Humber become a candidate to fill that last bullpen spot?

Also, though I didn't list him as in the running for the "4th OF" bench spot, it's worth noting that Jordan Danks has had a good start to this spring training. I don't think he's in contention to make the opening day roster, but hopefully he'll show some improvements in the minors this year.

rowand33
03-11-2011, 11:11 PM
I'm rooting hard for Milledge to be the 4th OF. Guy crushes left handed pitching.

dickallen15
03-12-2011, 08:34 AM
If the choice for a back up has to do with who has options left and who doesn't and isn't solely about who makes the team better now, it would be ridiculous. If Milledge makes the team better, if it costs the Sox De Aza and/or Lillibridge, who cares? They aren't exactly on a HOF path. They are back ups at best. Keep the best player, and don't make any selection based on the number of options players have remaining. Its not like Lillibridge and De Aza are irreplaceable. If they left the organization and an injury occurred, it would take KW about 5 seconds to find someone available just as good if not better who would cost peanuts to acquire.

Vestigio
03-12-2011, 09:05 AM
KW said on the radio broadcast yesterday that he preferably wants 11 arms to start the season. But that all hinges on the health of Peavy.

Mohoney
03-12-2011, 10:01 PM
KW said on the radio broadcast yesterday that he preferably wants 11 arms to start the season. But that all hinges on the health of Peavy.

I really hope that this is the way they go and keep Milledge and Lillibridge instead of a 7th relief pitcher.

Hitmen77
03-14-2011, 08:36 AM
I don't think he's a candidate for a spot on the opening day roster, but Jordan Danks is having himself a good spring so far. I hope he's finally turning the corner in his minor league progress and will be able to succeed in the big leagues in the not too distant future.

http://www.chicagotribune.com/sports/baseball/whitesox/ct-spt-0314-white-sox-bits--20110313,0,7008717.story

konerko 14
03-15-2011, 05:57 PM
I think the last two spots will be Milledge and Gregory Infante

TheVulture
03-15-2011, 08:13 PM
3B - It's really early but Teahen is hitting well at .500 and Morel is hitting .176.

Obviously Teahen is a liability defensively and has given up tons of errors so far, but at what point would his bat outweigh his glove?


In July when he's hitting .350, not a couple weeks into Spring frickin' Training.

GoSox2K3
03-15-2011, 09:07 PM
I'm kinda out of the loop but was it announced that Thornton is the closer?

Sale has been struggling in ST so far. I know there's still 2 weeks to go, but it might be that the youngster is not quite ready to assume the "closer" role.