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2002 Roster Projections

on 02/05/2002

Billy Hall shot up the power 50 last year, and might find himself in AAA this year.

The 2001 baseball season is now well behind us, and the rays of hope that spring anew with the approach of a new season, the 2002 season, are here. Memories, both good and bad, still linger from the past season, but now everyone, both fan and player alike, are set to make new memories, hopefully more good than bad. As the cliché goes, everyone starts the season with the same record and with a clean slate. Anything can happen in the upcoming season, and many things that we won't expect to happen will. Anticipation flows through the veins of the baseball world. Possibly in no place does this anticipation run stronger than in the hearts of the young baseball players, jockeying for a promotion, trying to keep his starting spot, or even just trying to stay on the roster at all. This time of year, every roster is full and everyone has a chance. Welcome to the coming onset of spring, and the real beginning to a new year, spring training.

Though formal spring training doesn't begin for a few weeks, some players have already been through minicamps down in Arizona and Florida, and some players have even been there for most of the winter, trying to work on skills to try to become a better player, a player more valuable to the parent organization. For Brewers farmhands, this means heading down to Maryvale, Arizona, a suburb of Phoenix. As players start trickling, and then streaming, down to the valley of the sun, what better time to try and project where all the guys will end up? The following projections are where we at think that all the guys will end up to begin the season, as well as some alternative possibilities. Keep in mind that, with some roster moves likely to be made before the start of the season, we can't really guess as to exact rosters, but here is out best try with the present personnel.

As always, feedback is appreciated:

Milwaukee (25 Active, 1 DL, 6 Alternates)  
C - Henry Blanco C-Raul Casanova
1B-Richie Sexson  
2B-Eric Young UT-Luis Lopez
3B-Ronnie Belliard UT-Tyler Houston
SS-Jose Hernandez  
LF-Geoff Jenkins OF-Ryan Christenson
CF-Jeffrey Hammonds OF-Alex Ochoa
RF-Matt Stairs  
SP-Jamey Wright MR-Mike DeJean
SP-Glendon Rusch MR-Takaki Nomura
SP-Ruben Quevedo MR-Ray King
SP-Ben Sheets MR-Valerio De Los Santos
SP-Paul Rigdon MR-Jorge Sosa
CL-Chad Fox  
  Swing-Lenny Harris (UT)
Disabled List:  
CL-Curtis Leskanic  
1B-Jon Zuber SP-Nick Neugebauer
2B-Marcos Scutaro MR-Jesus Pena
2B-Mark Loretta MR-Mike Buddie

With a glut of middle infielders, someone is going to have to be moved, and I think that if the Brewers can move Loretta for pretty much anything, they will. Blanco and Casanova should pretty much split time as the backstop. The starting infield and outfield are now almost pretty much set, unless Belliard is traded, or can't adjust to third base. Paul Rigdon probably gets the nod over Nick Neugebauer, as the Brewers will want to be cautious with "Nuke." The last bullpen spot will either go to Mike Buddie, last year's serviceable long reliever or Jorge Sosa, the Rule 5 draft pick from Seattle.

Indy (24 Active, 3 Alternates)  
C-Marcus Jensen C-Lance Burkhart
1B-Bucky Jacobsen  
2B-Marcos Scutaro UT-Rob Sasser
3B-Dionys Cesar  
SS-Elvis Pena  
LF-Jim Rushford OF-Kevin Barker
CF-Jaisen Randolph OF-Ryan Thompson
RF-Alex Sanchez  
SP-Ryan Glynn MR-Derek Lee
SP-Nick Neugebauer MR-Jesus Pena
SP-Jimmy Osting MR-Jack Krawczyk
SP-Andrew Lorraine MR-Jason Childers
SP-Jose Garcia MR-Derrin Ebert
CL-Brian Mallette  
  Swing-Jon Zuber (1B)
SS-Billy Hall SP-Kyle Peterson
OF-Jason Fox SP-Jeff Sparks
OF-Derrick Gibson MR-Gus Gandarillas
OF-Robert Perez MR-Rob Marquez
  MR-Andy High
  MR-Mike Buddie
  MR-Mike Penney
  MR-Jayson Durocher
  MR-Everett Stull

The team will once again be heavy on 1B/corner-OF/DH types, with Rushford, Jacobsen, Barker and Zuber all likely making the team. I would imagine the team wants to get a good, long look at Jaisen Randolph as a leadoff guy, to see if he can get back his prospect status. The 5th outfield spot is pretty much up for grabs, although another spot might open up if Sanchez breaks camp with the Brewers. The pitching picture is muddled at best, with no less than 20 pitchers having a decent shot at a roster spot. I have chosen to go more in-house with roster picks, although any number of Garcia, Lee, Krawczyk, Childers and possibly even Mallette, could end up back in Huntsville. Of the 5 starters listed, only Osting is a sure thing to be there at the beginning of the season. There will be some decent AAA talent released here.

Huntsville (24 Active, 2 DL, 18 Alternates)  
C-Kade Johnson C-Brian Moon
1B-Billy Scott  
2B-Steve Scarborough UT-Jeff Kenney
3B-Gabe Alvarez  
SS-Billy Hall  
LF-Jeff Deardorff OF-Mark Cridland
CF-Ryan Knox OF-Jason Fox
RF-Cristian Guerrero  
SP-Matt Childers MR-Mike Penney
SP-Jose Mieses MR-Andy High
SP-Luis Martinez MR-Paul Stewart
SP-Matt Parker MR-Bobby Sismondo
SP-Dave Pember MR-George Perez
CL-Roberto Giron  
  Swing-Jarred Mathis (UT)
Disabled List:  
SP-Al Hawkins  
MR-Ryan LaMattina  
C-Matt Ceriani SP-Jose Garcia
3B-Chris Rowan SP-Ryan Glynn
SS-Mark Ernster SP-Ben Hendrickson
OF-Jaisen Randolph SP-Jeff Sparks
OF-Pete Zoccolillo SP-Al Hawkins
OF-Derrick Gibson MR-Everett Stull
  MR-Rod Allen
  MR-Mike Corey
  MR-Elvis Polanco
  MR-Doug Dent
  MR-Ryan LaMattina
  MR-Jayson Durocher

Notes: Brian Moon starts his third campaign in Huntsville, and even with his defensive prowess, one wonders if he will ever advance, or if he should be tried out as a pitcher. The lineup is pretty much a facsimile of last year's High Desert opening day starters, except at third base, where minor league vet and former top prospect Gabe Alvarez takes over. Hall and Scarborough make a way above average double play combo. The starting pitchers are pretty much set, although a veteran minor leaguer like Jeff Sparks could be chosen to start for awhile, to give a young staff some guidance. And again, there are a lot of arms to choose from here for the bullpen, and some good talent will be released.

High Desert (24 Active, 14 Alternates)  
C-Eliezer Alfonzo C-Matt Ceriani
1B-Jude Voltz  
2B-Elio Ayala UT-Chris Rowan
3B-DJ Clark  
SS-Todd West  
LF-Pete Zoccolillo OF-Scott Candelaria
CF-Dave Krynzel OF-Hector Garcia
RF-Derry Hammond  
SP-Ryan Miller MR-Roberto Maysonet
SP-Ben Hendrickson MR-Gene Altman
SP-Justin Gordon MR-Pete Smart
SP-Jeff Robinson MR-Dan Hall
SP-JM Gold MR-Elvis Polanco
CL-Mike Shwam  
  Swing-Joel Alvarado (C)
C-Jason Belcher SP-Luis Martinez
C-Brian Foster MR-Ryan LaMattina
C-Chris Haggard MR-Rod Allen
SS-Mark Ernster MR-Mike Corey
OF-Eric De La Cruz MR-Greg Schaub
  MR-Dan Mathews
  MR-Chris McGee
  MR-Victor Cordero
  MR-Ben Wallace

This will be another High Desert team that will put out a bunch of offense, but will struggle on the mound at times. Alfonzo, Voltz, Clark, Zoccolillo and Hammond will all hit for above average power here. Garcia will share time with Voltz and first and Zoccolillo in left field, as well as bat as the DH. Ayala and West, like Scarborough and Hall, are a very good middle infield pairing defensively. None of the starters besides Hendrickson proved a whole lot last year, and the task won't get easier in Adelanto. Smart may start to provide some leadership. Once again, there are a whole lot of bullpen arms to choose from, although Hall and Shwam are the likely setup-closer combo.

Beloit (24 Active, 1 DL, 20 Alternates)  
C-Jason Belcher C-Jeff Eure
1B-Corey Hart  
2B-Ralph Santana UT-Florian Villanueve
3B-Chris Barnwell  
SS-JJ Hardy  
LF-Travis Hinton OF-Brandon Gemoll
CF-Tommy Carrow OF-Jonah McClanahan
RF-Carlos Soriano  
SP-Judd Richardson MR-Geraldo Castillo
SP-Jon Steitz MR-Matt Yeatman
SP-Mike Jones MR-Dave Nolasco
SP-Dustin Lansford MR-Chris Saenz
SP-Dennis Sarfate MR-Victor Cordero
CL-Mike Adams  
  Swing-Heath McMurray (MR)
Disabled List:  
SP-Eric Henderson  
C-Chris Haggard SP-JM Gold
C-Joel Alvarado SP-Brian Nielsen
C-Brian Foster MR-Jeremy Shorey
C-Matt Serafini MR-Chris McGee
C-Josh Johnson MR-Rusty Huggins
1B-Brad Nelson MR-Greg Schaub
2B-Anulfo Geraldo MR-Gene DeSalme
OF-Bryan Hicks MR-Dan Kolb
OF-Javerro January MR-Ben Wallace
OF-Dan Boyd  
OF-Terry Mayo  

Notes: With a hot start, Belcher may indeed not be around long, and it would appear Villanueve would be given the catcher's spot at that point. Until then, Florian will get a lot of at-bats, just in a widely varying array of defensive positions. Besides Belcher, Lansford and Cordero, this is basically the 2001 Ogden team. This will be a fairly veteran A-ball team, with only 9 of the projected 24 players being non-college signees. I would expect Beloit to once again retain 12 pitchers, to ease the burden on young shoulders and arms.

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