Thursday, February 11, 2010

Let's Look at Roster Changes Within the NL West

In the National League Western Division there are the Los Angeles Dodgers, Colorado Rockies, San Francisco Giants, Arizona Diamondbacks and San Diego Padres.

Arizona worked on bulking up their pitching staff with the additions of Aaron Heilman, Bob Howry (remember him Giants' fans?), Edwin Jackson, and Billy Buckner. All right-handers.

They acquired a solid second-baseman in Kelly Johnson and former Pirate first-sacker, Adam LaRoche.

Colorado signed Miguel Olivo, a catcher. Re-signed Jason Giambi and utility infielder formerly with the Baltimore Orioles, Melvin Mora.

San Diego signed pitcher Jon Garland and catcher Yorvit Torrealba. If you recall, they ended the season as one of the hottest in an already good division. They have a lot of young talent that kicked some butt in September. So we shall see if those players improve without all of the growing pains.

Los Angeles Dodgers have Ramon and Russ Ortiz as non-roster invitees. Also on that list are: Justin Knoedler (former Giant farmhand), Doug Mientkiewicz and Brian Giles. Giles really tailed off last season but he's well-respected and the Dodgers are smart to give him a looksee.

The re-signed Vicente Padilla and Brad Ausmus. Signed Jamey Carroll (INF) and Reed Johnson (OF). Not bad for a team that won the division last season.

Last but certainly not least, YOUR San Francisco Giants.
We know about Mark DeRosa, a versatile player with some pop in his bat and Aubrey Huff, a good low-ball hitter who is said to be suspect with the glove. Nate Schierholtz will have an opportunity to win the right field job and replace last year's almost automatic out, but solid defender, Randy Winn.

Is Dan Runzler the real deal? The lefty who came up late last season and did remarkably well. Does Ryan Rohlinger give reason to replace Edgar Renteria. I realize the Giants will have to do some juggling of infielders but this is a game of who is hot and who is not. Who is not will be riding some pine and they have versatility in Pablo Sandoval (1B-3B-C), Juan Uribe (3B-SS-2B) and the aforementioned Mark DeRosa (OF-2B).

They added Guillermo Mota, Todd Wellemeyer,B.Y. Kim as non-roster invitees to help bolster their solid bullpen.

My buddy Rich will be attending Spring Training's first week and I hope he can add some insights as well as photos of his trip to see the 2010 San Francisco Giants.

Kevin Marquez