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About Jon
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1) using profanity or any euphemisms for profanity
2) personally attacking other commenters
3) baiting other commenters
4) arguing for the sake of arguing
5) discussing politics
6) using hyperbole when something less will suffice
7) using sarcasm in a way that can be misinterpreted negatively
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Two Weeks and Three Days to Go
2003-03-14 08:23
by Jon Weisman
Note: The Dodger Thoughts blog has moved to the Los Angeles Times.

I've been vascillating on the idea of writing on the weekends. Obviously, there's a lot going on with the Dodgers on Saturdays and Sundays, but at the same time, there's a lot going on chez Weisman too. Hope you'll be patient as I try to work out the schedule. Meanwhile, I'll be out of town this particular weekend, so enjoy today's entries and we'll see you next on Monday...

The first cuts have been made - and some strong impressions have been made as well - since my last 25-man roster analysis February 24.

Among other things, Guillermo Mota didnÕt do Larry Barnes or his batting cohorts any favors. If he makes the team, he will probably start the season on suspension. That makes the Dodgers more likely to keep a 12th pitcher to avoid blowing out their pitching staff in the first week. (By the way, Ross Newhan quite effectively covers just about all the angles on the Mota-Mike Piazza incident in the Times today - I really don't have much to add on that front.)

Anyway, the way the roster stacks up, it does feel like a trade is waiting to be made, doesnÕt it? WeÕll see. Until then, I have to operate with the assumption that what you see is what you get. Here goes:

Locks (23)
Starting Pitchers (5): Odalis Perez, Hideo Nomo, Kevin Brown, Kazuhisa Ishii, Darren Dreifort

Bullpen (6): Eric Gagne, Paul Quantill, Paul Shuey, Giovanni Carrara, Guillermo Mota, Andy Ashby

Starting Lineup (8): Dave Roberts, Paul Lo Duca, Shawn Green, Brian Jordan, Fred McGriff, Adrian Beltre, Joe Thurston, Cesar Izturis

Bench (4): Mike Kinkade, Daryle Ward, Alex Cora, Todd Hundley

Most Likely to Succeed (2)
Wilson Alvarez, LHP: He hasnÕt answered any long-term questions, diminishing the possibility that the Dodgers want to pay him major-league money from the get-go. He is guaranteed $750,000 if he makes the team. But the Mota incident changed everything. My guess is that if a suspended MotaÕs on the roster March 31, Alvarez will be as well.

Jolbert Cabrera, IF/OF: He was destined to make the team or hit the waiver wire, but sounds like heÕs had the spring heÕs needed. HeÕs not a name pick like Ron Coomer, but heÕs got versatility, and tenure Š heÕs been with the Dodgers for months!

Strong Shot (2)
Ron Coomer, 1B/3B: I just had a feeling heÕd make this unreasonably difficult. The fact that heÕs said he wonÕt accept a minor-league assignment might or might not have been a ploy, but it was effective, enough to move him ahead of Larry Barnes. Only Coomer's inability to play center Š and Mota - is keeping him off the team now. However it goes, I predict he hits more homers in the exhibitions than in the regular season.

Troy Brohawn, LHP: Another potential Mota beneficiary. HasnÕt pitched himself out of the running yet, and Alvarez is an expensive ŅThis tape will self-destruct in five seconds.Ó

See You Midseason? (14)
Larry Barnes, 1B/LF: Has emerged as the sentimental favorite. But look how many people already play first base: McGriff, Kinkade, Ward, Hundley, Lo Duca, Green, not to mention Coomer. Four of those guys bat lefty. ItÕs impressive Barnes is even being considered.

Jason Romano, IF/OF: Just an age/experience thing with him and Cabrera. Romano has minor-league options remaining.

David Ross, C: His health, and the strong springs that so many fringe players have had, have left him behind, but with HundleyÕs history, I still think we might see him before April is out.

Steve Colyer, LHP: His youth and remaining options work against him. HeÕs probably the best candidate for the No. 12 slot.

Chin-Feng Chen, 1B/LF: Reopened some eyes with a great spring. Wait for Jordan to go on the DL.

Koyie Hill, C: Still promising. If Ross continues to battle injuries, he can play leapfrog.

Chad Hermansen, OF: The hole Š I mean, the DL Šcalls.

Wilkin Ruan, OF: A quiet but productive spring. His chance will come.

Alfredo Gonzalez, RHP: Heir apparent to MotaÕs young fireballer role.

Victor Alvarez, LHP: If Ishii gets hurt?

Lindsay Gulin, LHP: If Ishii and Alvarez get hurt?

Chris Clapinski, IF: Every time I looked up, this guy was making an error. Low on the depth chart.

Calvin Maduro, RHP: Filler for Las Vegas

Rodney Myers, RHP. Ditto.

Toeing the Waiver Wire (4)
Calvin Murray, OF: Barnes outhit him to steal the sentimental favorite slot.

Quilvio Veras, 2B: ItÕs not too late for him, but itÕs a real uphill battle.

Terry Shumpert, IF/OF: No buzz about him, and there are too many younger candidates.

Tom Martin, LHP: Too injury-prone.

Released (2)
Pedro Borbon, Jr., LHP: Pedro Borbon, Sr. is always available.

Yorkis Perez, LHP: Carlos is always available.

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