ANAHEIM, CA - JUNE 08: Center fielder Peter Bourjos #25 of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim makes a diving catch on a ball hit by Casey Kotchman (not pictured) #11 of the Tampa Bay Rays in the fourth inning at Angel Stadium of Anaheim on June 8, 2011 in Anaheim, California. (Photo by Jeff Gross/Getty Images)
Ladies and gentlemen, the focus is now officially on 2012. For all of us, except for maybe Cardinals fans, it's time to move on from 2011. This year is so last year anyways. So here at MLBDD we're spending some time projecting each team's 25-man roster for Opening Day 2012. We're not projecting trades or free agent signings here, so this is purely focusing on the talent that each team already has in-house. The 2012 season may not start soon, but we can still think about what it might look like.
Starting Lineup (ages are based on April 4, 2012)
Catcher: Chris Iannetta - Age 29 (as of 4/8/12)
First Base: Mark Trumbo - Age 26
Second Base: Howie Kendrick - Age 28
Third Base: Alberto Callaspo - Age 29 (as of 4/19/12)
Shortstop: Erick Aybar - Age 28
Left Field: Vernon Wells - Age 33
Center Field: Peter Bourjos - Age 25
Right Field: Torii Hunter - Age 36
Designated Hitter: Bobby Abreu - Age 38
Full batting order, bench, starting rotation and bullpen projections, as well as some of my thoughts, are included below the fold.
1. CF Bourjos 2. DH Abreu 3. 2B Kendrick 4. RF Hunter 5. 1B Trumbo 6. 3B Callaspo 7. LF Wells 8. C Iannetta 9. Aybar
1. RHP Jered Weaver - Age 29
2. RHP Dan Haren - Age 31
3. RHP Ervin Santana - Age 29
4. RHP Jerome Williams - Age 30
5. RHP Garrett Richards - Age 23
Closer: RHP Jordan Walden - Age 24
Some Quick Thoughts
- The addition of Chris Iannetta means that Jeff Mathis is almost sure to be non-tendered, much to the joy of Angels fans everywhere. I expect Wilson to get the first crack at being the second catcher, although Hank Conger will pose competition.
- Kendrys Morales' status for Opening Day is uncertain, so for now we'll go with Trumbo at first base once again. I expect Morales to get back into the thick of the LA lineup quickly once he's fully healthy, but the Angels are going to have to find space unless there's an injury or Abreu proves to be unplayable.
- The other guy that the Angels need to find room for is Mike Trout. They have one of the best young center fielders in the game already in Peter Bourjos, so there's a chance that Trout begins 2012 in Triple-A after an underwhelming stint in 2011.
- The Angels are going to have some uncertainty at the back of their rotation now that they've traded Tyler Chatwood, but they could end up signing a veteran to help out Williams and Richards given the lack of alternatives in-house.
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