ARLINGTON, TX - AUGUST 28: Yu Darvish #11 of the Texas Rangers throws against the Tampa Bay Rays at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington on August 28, 2012 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
As the Texas Rangers prepare to face the Baltimore Orioles in a win-or-go/stay-home Wild Card playoff game for the right to face the New York Yankees in the ALDS, the Rangers have announced their 25-man playoff roster for the night.
The interesting thing about this is that the winning team can reset their 25-man roster for the ALDS meaning you won't see guys like Ryan Dempster on tonight's roster since he pitched on Wednesday and wasn't effective, anyway. If they win, he'll definitely be back on the ALDS roster.
Anyway, here goes nothin':
Yu Darvish (starter), Scott Feldman, Roy Oswalt, Joe Nathan, Alexi Ogando, Koji Uehara, Yoshinori Tateyama.
Thoughts: Notable absences here are Mark Lowe and Tanner Scheppers, who both struggled down the stretch. The fact that the Rangers put Tateyama on the roster says all that needs to be said about Lowe's and Scheppers' standing with the club right now. If things don't go well for Yu, the Rangers will have Feldman and Oswalt available to go in a long role, as well as Matt Harrison and Derek Holland. One of them could also be used in an extra-inning situation. Ogando hasn't pitched well. No one's pitched better than Uehara recently, and Nathan should be plenty fresh after having not pitched since Sunday.
Matt Harrison, Derek Holland, Michael Kirkman, Robbie Ross.
Thoughts: No Martin Perez, but with the four "long guys" available mentioned above, there's no need for the unproven rookie who struggled in his couple of starts late in September. Holland threw a couple of innings on Wednesday, so you wouldn't think he'd be a prime option. He's only on board in case things go horribly wrong, or ridiculously long.
Mike Napoli, Geovany Soto, Luis Martinez.
Thoughts: You have to have a third catcher in case of injury armageddon.
Adrian Beltre, Elvis Andrus, Ian Kinsler, Mitch Moreland, Jurickson Profar, Michael Young.
Thoughts: Consider this, Michael Young actually has been halfway decent at third base recently, but you'd have to think Adrian Beltre is going to force Washington to put him at third if he's having any second thoughts about Beltre's injury, which in a one-gamer, is a non-factor.
Nelson Cruz, Josh Hamilton, David Murphy, Craig Gentry, Leonys Martin.
Thoughts: The three here that will have bearing are the three starters: Cruz, Hamilton and Murphy. The only way Gentry or Martin plays is in a pinch-running role or with Gentry entering late as a defensive replacement in center if the Rangers are up in the seventh or eighth inning.