Wild-card roster has a few surprises: Kiermaier in, Scott out; Moore in bullpen

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October

UPDATE, 10:55: The most interesting decisions: That Kiermaier, the 23-year-old who was called up to make his debt on Monday, was included; Luke Scott was left off; Moore is in the bullpen; and that Wesley Wright got the final bullpen spot over Brandon Gomes.



Why Kiermaier? The Rays say he is a tremendous defensive player, and there must still be some concerns about Jennings' hamstring. Kiermaier was used in center in the 9th on Monday and could be again, with Fuld in RF in place of Myers. Plus, Kiermaier can run decently so he could be used as pinch-runner if needed.

Why not Scott? It seems obvious the Rays are riding Delmon Young as the DH right now, meaning Scott's only role would be as a pinch-hitter, and they obviously feel they have Joyce and Johnson to handle that from the left side.

Why Moore? The Indians have a number of lefty hitters, and a switch-hitter or two the Rays would rather see bat right-handed. So Moore, who threw Sunday and likely would start Game 1 of the Division Series, could be used situationally. If they were thinking of another lefty, they decided he was a better choice than Cesar Ramos.

Why Wesley Wright over Gomes? See above. Plus Jamey Wright can work through an inning or even two if needed.

Why three catchers? First, it allows them to more comfortably pinch-run for Molina or Lobaton knowing there is a backup to the backup. Also, Gimenez is versatile, being able to play 1B, 3B and the OF if needed. And he hits lefties well.

DEVELOPING: The Rays set their 25-man roster for tonight's one-game wild card playoff, heavy, as expected, with position players. This roster is only for tonight - they can, and will, change it if they advance to the Division Series, which starts on Friday in Boston:

Starting pitcher
Alex Cobb - R

Relievers
Chris Archer - R
Jake McGee - L
Matt Moore - L
Joel Peralta - R
Fernando Rodney - R
Alex Torres - L
J. Wright - R
W. Wright - L

Catchers
Chris Gimenez
Jose Lobaton
Jose Molina

Infielders
Yunel Escobar
James Loney
Evan Longoria
Ben Zobrist

Outfielders
David DeJesus
Sam Fuld
Desmond Jennings
Kelly Johnson
Matt Joyce
Kevin Kiermaier
Wil Myers
Sean Rodriguez

DH
Delmon Young

[Last modified: Wednesday, October 2, 2013 11:40am]

    

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