Sunday, April 13, 2008

Possible Roster Moves to Come

After struggling in pressure situations for most of the season, Eric O'Flaherty was seemingly demoted from the later innings and appeared in what was supposed to be long relief for emergency starter Cha-Seung Baek. O'Flaherty gutted out 2.2 innings, but allowed 6 runs on 8 hits.

I already wrote about how Seattle should start using Ryan Rowland-Smith as the teams LOOGY over O'Flaherty, and now it would make sense that to demote him even further. AAA Tacoma seems to be his next stop. In fact, there has already been a rumor that he has already been sent to the minors in favor of R.A. Dickey; this coming from a commenter over at Geoff Baker's blog that was supposedly in the clubhouse after the game.

Such a move makes perfect sense because Seattle is short a long reliever after Cha-Seung Baek started in place of the hurting Erik Bedard. Having two long relievers on your team isn't the best strategy, and either Baek or Dickey would have to be sent down or waived after the bullpen sorts itself out. With O'Flaherty gone (presumably), Arthur Rhodes seems like the next in line to get a shot in Seattle after Dickey. I don't believe Rhodes is quite ready yet, but he could be up in the next 10 days or so.

Mike Morse is also likely on the move. He hasn't sustained his Spring Training hot streak at the plate and has continually looked like a fool in the outfield. He hurt himself making an awkward diving attempt on a sinking line drive (that most right fielders probably could have caught without diving) and was later removed from the game. Such a move wouldn't happen right away, but after the team runs some test on his shoulder (or whatever it is that ails him) he could find his way onto the 15-day disabled list, likely opening the door for Jeremy Reed. Wlad Balentien is also a possibilty, but the team would have to decide to bench Brad Wilkerson for that to happen, and I believe that Seattle is going to give Wilkerson some more time before such a move happens.

The Morse situation is more speculation than anything at this point, but if Seattle sees an opportunity to get Morse off of the team without losing him I think they'll take it. Such a move could be announced as early as tomorrow, but I wouldn't expect it for at least day or two.

Once again, none of this is official. Let's see how many of these things come true.

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