Later this morning in Viera, Florida, pitchers and catchers will trot out to the backfields of the Space Coast Stadium complex for the official start to Nationals spring training. Instead of waiting to hear which player is in the best shape of his life, I decided to take another stab at the Senators’ projected roster after my first guess a month ago.
Treinen was acquired from Oakland in the three-team deal that sent Michael Morse to Seattle and after a solid 2012 season in the hitter-friendly California League, expect the 6’4″ righthander to start at Double-A. I have West slotted into the #5 spot in the rotation, but frankly it could be any number of names like Brad Meyers, Jeff Mandel, Matt Grace, or Rob Gilliam.
Pat McCoy (pictured)
Tatusko and McCoy have probably earned the right to start the 2013 campaign in Triple-A, but they are the victims of a numbers crunch in the Syracuse bullpen with the recent signings of Jeremy Accardo and Will Ohman. Expect Aaron Barrett to solidify the late-inning relief corp in the second-half of the season.
Last week the Nationals signed MLB veteran Chris Snyder as an insurance policy in case Wilson Ramos isn’t physically able to start the season. However, if Ramos is ready what does that mean for Snyder? Reportedly, he has an out clause if he doesn’t make the opening day roster but he could just as easily accept an assignment to Triple-A Syracuse. This in turn would change where the Nats send Sandy Leon because they’re going to want him playing every day and that means as the primary backstop here in Harrisburg.
Justin Bloxom (pictured)
Rendon’s eventual call to Triple-A will shuffle the pieces around the Senators’ defensive alignment in the infield. In all likelihood, shortstop Jason Martinson will earn the promotion from Potomac which will slide Hague over to second base, and Nicol back to third.
Nothing has changed my mind on these four starting the season with the Senators. Barring injury or a developmental setback, I also expect Michael Taylor and Steven Souza to see time on City Island this season.