Peter Gammons has a new column out about the rigors of the 162-game schedule and the importance of depth.
"The way it is now, you really need 35 to 37 players before the season's over," says Buck Showalter.
Of course, Showalter, Dan Duquette and the Orioles masterfully juggle their roster between Baltimore and Norfolk. In many ways, it is born of necessity, because they do not have the big starting pitching horses, especially with Wei-Yin Chen on the disabled list ...
But the Orioles are not alone in their need for 12 and sometimes 13 active pitchers. "We see that more and more," says Showalter. Problem is, teams that require 12 and 13 pitchers find their benches strapped.
Hey, I think I have a solution. Try and follow me here: Maybe don't put 13 pitchers on your roster. Maybe Brian Matusz could be stretched out to, I don't know, more than two innings a week? Then you could replace the 7th or 8th guy out of the pen with a position player. I know, crazy, right?
I don't want to make this about the Orioles, because all teams do this. But you don't get to carry 12 or 13 pitchers and then complain about how thin your bench is. Well you can, I suppose, but you sound like an imbecile.
[Selig] has suspended players for the use of amphetimines [sic], and consequently, teams now have to adjust their rosters and some managers have suggested that rosters be expanded to 27 or 28 players.
No matter the problem, the manager's solution is always "we need more players up here."
Grueling travel schedule? Expand the rosters.
The All-Star Game is tied but we've run out of players? Expand the rosters.
They banned amphetamines? Expand the -- wait, what?!
"Depth is more important today than it ever was," says Billy Beane, who has tried to fill his roster with 25 players who can play multiple positions and assume a myriad of roles.
"What these kids bring is necessary depth to teams having to carry 12 or 13 pitchers," says one general manager. [e.a.]
It'd be so much easier if we could just use 10 or 11 pitchers, but the law's the law.
Sure, I'd love not to have to use all 30 players on the roster during the All-Star Game, but I don't want to go to jail for my beliefs.
Yeah, it'd be awesome if we could make the batters stay in the batters box between pitches, but what are you gonna do? Seventeenth amendment.