Predicting the Chicago Cubs Opening Day Roster

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With spring training right around the corner, I thought I would predict the Chicago Cubs opening day roster before anymore moves and injuries. Here I go:

Starting Lineup:
1) Dexter Fowler-CF
2) Chris Coghlan-LF
3) Anthony Rizzo-1B
4) Starlin Castro-SS
5) Jorge Soler-RF
6) Javier Baez-2B
7) Miguel Montero-C
8) Mike Olt-3B

Starting rotation:
1) Jon Lester
2) Jake Arrieta
3) Jason Hammel
4) Kyle Hendricks
5) Tsuyoshi Wada

Bullpen:
Closer-Hector Rondon
Set-up-Neil Ramirez
Set-up Pedro Strop
Right-handed pitcher Jason Motte
Right-handed pitcher Justin Grimm
Right-handed long relief Jacob Turner
Left-handed long relief Felix Doubront

Bench:
1) Arismendy Alcantara-utility
2) Tommy La Stella-2B
3) Chris Denorfia-OF
4) Ryan Sweeney-OF
5) David Ross-C

Notes:
*Top prospect Kris Bryant should be called up in May or so unless he hits .400 or better in spring training. I do not see that happening, but remember when Tyler Colvin did so and made the Cubs decision easy?

*Do not forget about starting pitcher Edwin Jackson. Yes, he is still on the roster. Jackson will compete for a the 5th spot in the rotation or a bullpen spot. I do not have the typical Cubs fan hate for Jackson. I actually do like Jackson and wish he would surprise all of us. His command is just not there. Jackson will compete with Wada, Turner and Doubront for a spot on the roster. I expect three of them to make the opening day roster. I think the Cubs need two more lefties on the roster and why I gave spots to Wada and Doubront. My hunch is Jackson will compete with Turner for the last spot on the roster. Due to Turner’s age and upside, I think the Cubs go with Turner. He showed he can pitch last season after coming over from Miami. If Jackson cannot make a spot on the roster, I expect the Cubs to release him and eat the remaining money on his contract.

*Also, do not forget, the Cubs still have catcher Welington Castillo and starting pitcher Travis Wood on the roster. The reason I do not have either on the opening day roster is because I expect them to be traded. I don’t sense the Cubs to go into the season with three catchers, and out of all the pitchers, Wood has the most trade value.

That is my opening day roster for the Chicago Cubs and side notes on decisions. Have any predictions? Let me know in the comments.

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4 Responses

  1. Gary Bjorklund

    LaStella will be in the opening day lineup at second or third. He can get on base and Baez and Olt are still over-matched against major league pitching. My guess is Baez goes to AAA to get the hitch out of his swing. Olt will hold down third for a month and if he does well the Cubs will look to move him when Bryant comes up. Jackson will be in the bullpen. The Cubs won’t eat his 13 million a year. They will hope he pitches well out of the gate so they can move him and eat only part of his contract.

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  2. Kyle short

    Olt can backup 3rd,1st and RF when Bryant gets called up. Remember Soler will get extra days off due to durability. La Stella or Arismendy will be at 2nd. Ejax may get cut or if he doesn’t pitch well in spring. If he can’t pitch well anywhere they won’t pay him to take up a spot. There’s no room for him anyway. If he pitches well Grimm will get sent down to become a starter. Or they will move him and pay most of his salary. Remember they payed a ton of sorianos contract to go away. Wood and Castillo could be on the roster due to their not getting what he wants for them. It could be a bluff called. Wood could force wada into pen. Castillo could be used as a pinch hitter, back up right handed first baseman and catch for Hendricks bec he liked him last year like Ross for Lester. Ross only hits .230 vs LHP. This could go until they call up Bryant. That way you don’t waste an option on a plate for 2 weeks while Bryant waits to get called up. Sweeney said he would go down so he doesn’t lose his bonus if he gets designated for assignment. Lake tore it up in the winter and may steal a bench spot in spring. I understand sweeney is left handed but there is a lot of left handed batters on this team to include switch hitters.

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  3. Roy Tidwell

    I like your roster and think you likely 97% correct. But knowing theo’s often very transparent and seeing what happened last week with shields. I have a feeling last week gave the public a view into Theo wants another starter. I suspect 3 or 4 days before ST ends. Theo is going to move Beaz, Castillo, Wood, Jackson and Cj edwards to Philly for Hamels and a second round DP(and the cubs eat the Jackson money) or there is 3rd team involved that gets jackson and cassy. Everyone in this deal are likely end of ST surplus. This is going to depend some on LaStella having a good spring. Beaz having a so so spring. Cassy having a decent spring and Jackson looking like a major league pitcher during the spring. Theo hoped I suspect that when Sheilds price came down. A draft pick was worth it. Now he knows he must give up some talent. lets see if he will do it. But there is something on the horizon I believe. If Beaz has a MONSTER spring they will keep him. Only the manager will know for sure!!!!!. He is going to make another move and Joe will get to guide this one.

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