03/24/08 9:10 PM ET
Padres' roster to take shape soon
Guevara, Hampson candidates to join Edmonds on DL
By Corey Brock / MLB.com
Chances are the Padres won't wait nearly as long though, as the team could possibly finalize their Opening Day roster before they break camp Thursday, as a round of cuts are scheduled for Tuesday.
A handful of injuries have brought some clarity to the roster, as pitchers Justin Hampson and Carlos Guevara and outfielder Jim Edmonds likely will begin the season on the 15-day disabled list, freeing-up spots on the active roster.
San Diego manager Bud Black said Monday that Edmonds was "questionable" for Opening Day.
San Diego manager Bud Black said on Monday that the right-handed Guevara, a Rule 5 Draft pick from the Reds in December, suffered a groin strain recently that may or may not be related to the hamstring that limited his participation at the start of camp.
Hampson likely will begin the season on the disabled list with tendinitis in his left shoulder, while Edmonds, who has just six at-bats this spring, has a strained right calf and hasn't been cleared to participate in full baseball activities yet.
The injuries to Hampson and Guevara could mean that right-hander Enrique Gonzalez, who has a 2.31 ERA during the spring and is out of Minor League options, could be on the team.
A year after opening the season with no left-handers on the staff, the Padres could have three this season if Glendon Rusch, Joe Thatcher and Wil Ledezma all make the team.
Black said Monday that it's imperative the team carries at least one pitcher capable of pitching in long relief, which is something Rusch, Ledezma and Gonzalez are certainly capable of doing.
"There might be two or three guys with length," Black said.
From a position player perspective, it appears utilityman Callix Crabbe stands a good chance of making the team. Crabbe, who had a team-high 19 hits going into Monday's contest against the Angels, can play every spot in the infield but first base and can also play the outfield.
With Edmonds on the DL, outfielder Paul McAnulty likely will make the team, as well. The same goes for Jody Gerut, the non-roster invitee who will likely start in left field Opening Day.
Luis Rodriguez might have gained an edge on Oscar Robles for the last backup infield job on the bench. Rodriguez is hitting .370 this spring; Robles is hitting .273. Offense, though, isn't so much what Black is looking for in a backup infielder; defense is.
Rodriguez, claimed off waivers from the Twins in October, is four years younger than Robles and can play anywhere in the infield but first base.
Corey Brock is a reporter for MLB.com This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.