Roster doctor reveals MRI

It’s time to flip the calendar page to March (my favorite month of the year, by the way) and take a look at how the Mariners 25-man Opening Day roster shapes up from these old set of eyes.

Manager Don Wakamatsu hasn’t exactly asked for my advice on this subject, but the roster doctor is in the house and the MRI (My Roster Intuition) reads like this:

Pitchers (12)
1. Felix Hernandez
2. Erik Bedard
3. Brandon Morrow
4. Carlos Silva
5. Ryan Rowland-Smith
6. Jarrod Washburn
7. Miguel Batista
8. Mark Lowe
9. Roy Corcoran
10. David Aardsma
11. Garrett Olson
12. Randy Messenger

Catchers (2)
1. Kenji Johjima
2. Jeff Clement

Infielders (5)
1. Russell Branyan
2. Jose Lopez
3. Yuniesky Betancourt
4. Adrian Beltre
5. Ronny Cedeno

Outfielders (6)
1. Ichiro Suzuki
2. Franklin Gutierrez
3. Ken Griffey Jr.
4. Endy Chavez
5. Mike Morse
6. Mike Sweeney

You will notice (or maybe you won’t) that there are two non-roster invitees — Mike Sweeney and Randy Messenger — on my 25-man roster, which means two players would have to be removed from the 40-man to make room for them.

If the Mariners decide to carry 11 pitchers instead of 12, my guess is that a third catcher would make the team, probably Jamie Burke, although he also is a non-roster invitee.

Assuming that I am 100 percent correct on the MRI (insert laugh here) it means neither of the Rule 5 Draft choices — infielder Reegie Corona, known as Mr. Excitement at this camp, or pitcher Jose Lugo — are on the team and must be offered back to the organizations that lost them, the Yankees and Twins, respectively.

There you have it and you can take it to the bank — preferably one that has gone belly-up.

— Jim Street

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