Tonight we will find out who the Cardinals play in the NLDS as the Reds and Pirates square off in their Wild Card game. But, before the Cards square off against the winner on Thursday, Mike Matheny and company need to set the roster. To help him out, I've put together my own analysis of who should be included on the postseason roster.
These guys are definitely on the roster.
Note: Allen Craig's injury will keep him out of the NLDS
That's 22 players, which brings us to...
First, the team needs to fill one more bullpen spot. The candidates are Sam Freeman, Carlos Martinez, Fernando Salas and Jake Westbrook.
I think Westbrook is probably out. Matheny gave him the start on Sunday, out of respect for all he's done for the team, but he doesn't do well out of the pen. Freeman, Martinez and Salas all have their merits, but I think that, based on how he was used in high leverage situations down the stretch, Martinez is Matheny's man.
Finally, the team needs two more bench players. The choices are Brock Peterson, Adron Chambers, Ryan Jackson or Kolten Wong. Jackson is likely out, as he was seldom used down the stretch and the combo of Descalso and Kozma should be adequate enough for short and utility. So, it basically comes down to Peterson, who provides right handed power, Chambers, a lefty outfielder who can play all 3 spots, and Wong, who provides the Cards with some speed.
I think the Cards will go with Peterson and Wong, as it would give them a good combo of right/left and power/speed. Chambers would give the Cardinals another outfielder, in case Beltran or Holliday is banged up, but Peterson is capable of playing a corner outfield spot and the Cards will already have Robinson, who is capable of playing all 3 spots. In any case, I don't see these guys seeing much action than the usual pinch hitting/pinch running situations.
Tomorrow, I will take a look at the matchups versus tonight's Reds/Pirates winner.