2009 Outlook With IRONPIGPEN

An Iron Pigs blog, IRONPIGPEN, The Pork Stops Here! predicted the Phillies lineup for the 2009 season. Please click the link to see more on IRONPIGPEN's picks in the From the Top Series. Click to see the pitching outlook.

IRONPIGPEN’s Catchers: Ruiz, Paulino

My pick: Agree. I think Chris Coste will be traded before the end of spring training. I’m a fan of Lou Marson, but unless one of the catchers gets injured, he’ll likely be somewhere in the minor leagues until September.

IRONPIGPEN’s Infielders: Howard, Utley, Ozuna, Rollins, Feliz, Dobbs

My pick: Howard, Utlely, Rollins, Bruntlett, Feliz, Dobbs

The starters are obvious picks. The only questions are whether Feliz (back) and Utley (hip) will be ready for Opening Day. Feliz should be ready, and so far Utley is ahead of schedule. However, if Utley were to miss some games, I think (Jason) Donald will get the call. (Marcus) Giles, (Eric) Bruntlett, or (Pablo) Ozuna could get the job, but I think Donald will impress this spring. I think the Phillies liked how Bruntlett filled in last year defensively for Rollins, and Bruntlett will be on the bench for defensive purposes both in the infield and outfield.

IRONPIGPEN’s Outfielders: Ibanez, Jenkins, Werth, Victorino

My pick: Agree. The Phillies need a right-handed bat and a left-handed relief pitcher. They are stacked with left-handed batters, and either Matt Stairs or Jenkins will be moved for somebody to fill one of those holes. My guess is Stairs. John Mayberry has a chance to make the club, but I don’t see it happening.

The number of bench players depends on how many pitchers the Phillies decide to use in their bullpen. Assuming they are going with a thirteen man staff, there will be four bench players. My outlook is Paulino, Bruntlett, Dobbs, and Jenkins unless they gain a right-handed bat off the bench.


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