I was thinking this morning: Are the Yanks basically done with the off-season? It seems so. With six starting pitchers, a slew of relievers and potential relievers, a decent number of outfielders, and an entire infield save for a definite first baseman. Check it.
1B: Shelley/Betemit/eventually Miranda
That’s only 12 guys (not counting Miranda, who will start the season in AAA). Since we’re not going with 13 pitchers, there’s still room for one more guy on the roster. The Yanks have done plenty fine with one utility infielder for the past few years, so I’d hope they add an outfielder — unless Betemit is getting the bulk of the time at first. In which case having someone like Alberto Gonzalez on the roster would be useful.
That’s six, so six relievers:
And then you have the next three slots for the following players: Jon Albaladejo, Ross Ohlendorf, Chris Britton, Brian Bruney, Edwar Ramirez, Jose Veras, Chase Wright, Sean Henn, Kei Igawa, Jeff Karstens, Darrell Rasner, Scott Patterson, and then the converted starter-types: Alan Horne, Jeff Marquez, Steven “Don’t Call Me” White. Further, we should have access to J.B. Cox and Marc Melancon by late May/early June, as they’ll be ready for Opening Day, and will likely open in Tampa.
So what’s left of the off-season for the Yanks is basically compiling a decent minor-league invite list, though Mark Newman thinks that “[MiL free agents] don’t want to sign with us for obvious reasons.” That being less of a chance for playing time. A minor-league free agent has a far better shot of making, say, Houston’s roster than the Yanks.
Here’s the only question I’m left with: Do you carry all six starters from the beginning, or do you let one of them — presumably IPK — work out in the minors a bit so you can experiment with four relievers at a time, rather than three?