Thursday, August 22, 2013

The 40-Man Roster & the Bulls in September

It’s eight days to the end of August and we Bulls fans are beginning to worry about what Labor Day will look like — and we would expect the same is true for a few Durham Bulls.

The basics are these: For most of the season the Tampa Bay Rays can only have 25 players on their active roster. That is, any player who goes onto the field has to be among those 25 players. However, there’s a larger 40-man roster from which the players on the 25-man roster are drawn. For Bulls fans the key point is that none of the guys we’re watching can play for the Rays unless they are first on the 40-man roster.

The current Rays 40-man roster is here. Players on the 60-day disabled list don’t count. They can play in minor league games as part of a rehabilitation assignment, but I don’t know the rules there.

In September, any of the players on the 40-man can suit up and play for the Rays. If they go into the playoffs, the Rays have to go back to 25, but that's a month away.

The Durham Bulls have 7 pitchers and two position players on the 40-man. Also note that it's fairly common for the Rays to call up a pitcher whom we've seen as a starter and use him as a reliever (e.g., Alex Torres), although the reverse has never happened in my experience.
  • LHP Jeff Beliveau 
  • RHP Alex Colome (The Bulls carry Colome as on the DL, the Rays do not. Last seen pitching at the DBAP on June 17)
  • LHP Frank De Los Santos
  • RHP Brandon Gomes
  • RHP Josh Lueke
  • LHP Mike Montgomery
  • RHP Jake Odorizzi
  • Catcher Chris Gimenez
  • Infielder Tim Beckham
As for any of the other 16 players on the Bulls roster, unless some manipulation is done they cannot be called up in September. But don’t ever underestimate the Rays' deviousness. Remember that when they wanted/needed Jason Bourgeois they got him on the 40-man and into uniform.

From a Bulls fan perspective it’s fair to wonder about Leslie Anderson or Vince Belnome or Cole Figueroa; or J.D. Martin or Kirby Yates. But the Rays have to need them seriously enough to clear a space on the 40-man.

Maybe, just maybe, the Rays will leave the roster alone until the playoffs are over, but don’t bet on it. They’ve got a pennant to win and they are definitely in the hunt. I’m guessing that Gomes and maybe Lueke go up almost immediately. So the Bulls bullpen is going to need some help. Juan Sandoval over in Montgomery, among others, might be available. Undoubtedly the Rays will want a spare catcher, so Chris Gimenez will likely leave, but WDBB hopes not before mid-September. Similarly, it’s time for Tim Beckham to get his “taste” of the big leagues. So he could go up for a few ABs. Again, would like to seem him stay with the Bulls through the playoffs.

As regular readers will know, making guesses about this sort of thing isn’t my strong point. How about your guesses?

And who else over in Montgomery could be showing up to lend a hand? Mahtook? Casali?

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