Pirates set roster; Jeanmar Gomez makes team

Ronald Martinez

The Pirates have set their roster in preparation for the season. Jeff Locke has won the fifth starter job, which was about the only thing about this roster I've been getting right since February. Also, Jeanmar Gomez made the team as a reliever, presumably as a long man. He's a bad pitcher and I wish he weren't there, but the wheels were set in motion for him to make the team when Jeff Karstens went down.

The Bucs sent Kyle McPherson, Alex Presley, Jordy Mercer, Felix Pie, Mike Zagurski, Ryan Reid, Vin Mazzaro, Lucas May and Carlos Paulino to the minors. Also, Brandon Inge appears headed to the DL. So here's what we've got:

Starting position players

C Russell Martin
1B Garrett Jones
2B Neil Walker
SS Clint Barmes
3B Pedro Alvarez
LF Starling Marte
CF Andrew McCutchen
RF Travis Snider

Bench

C Michael McKenry
1B Gaby Sanchez
IF John McDonald
IF Josh Harrison
OF Jose Tabata

Rotation

A.J. Burnett
Wandy Rodriguez
James McDonald
Jonathan Sanchez
Jeff Locke

Bullpen

Jason Grilli
Mark Melancon
Jared Hughes
Tony Watson
Justin Wilson
Chris Leroux
Jeanmar Gomez

Not the most inspiring roster, and I can't remember the last time I felt this deflated about the way spring training has gone. The key to these decisions is that the Pirates can hold on to depth pieces like Sanchez and Gomez while they wait for pitchers like Karstens and Francisco Liriano to get healthy. Sanchez had an out clause, and Gomez was out of options. In any case, Gomez struck out 47 batters and walked 34 in 90.2 innings for Cleveland last year. The Pirates shouldn't have been in position where they had to rely on him, even if it's only as a long reliever.

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