Phillies Opening Day Roster Announced
The Phillies 25-man roster has been finalized:
The inclusion of non-roster invitee Mario Hollands is a significant surprise. He’s a 25-year-old pitcher who put up nice numbers in 2013 between high-A Clearwater and double-A Reading (132 IP, 2.86 ERA, 114 K, 32 BB, 1.23 WHIP). His stuff isn’t remarkable and he only has 12.2 career innings at the AAA level, but with Cole Hamels and Mike Adams on the shelf to start the season, the Phillies had an extra rotation spot available. Bill Baer had a nice overview of Hollands’ repertoire earlier this month which also includes a look at the other NRI pitcher to make the team, Jeff Manship.
There’s nothing to be lost in carrying Hollands on the roster and extending the opportunity to evaluate him at the top level while reaping the benefits of a funky delivery that has yet to be figured out. With pitching health being a fickle beast and relief arms being notoriously unpredictable, there’s still every reason to expect guys like Shawn Camp, Phillippe Aumont, and (fingers crossed) Kenny Giles will have their chances to produce at the Major League level at some point during the 2014 season.
Another notable reality highlighted by the release of the roster is that one of those bench bats will be in the lineup for each of the first three games due to the horrors of interleague play and the designated hitter rule. This could very well mean that Mayberry will start against a RHP, Texas Rangers’ opening day starter Tanner Scheppers, on the very first day of the season. There’s a plethora of adjectives that could be used to describe that situation, I’ll go with unfortunate.
One final takeaway from the roster: Ruiz, Howard, Utley, and Rollins are all healthy and expected to be in the opening day lineup for the first time since 2010.