JUPITER, Fla. • The Cardinals' decision to remove Chasen Shreve from the 40-man roster has pulled back the curtain on internal discussions about more than it would have been on the first day of opening.
They could lean to the right, heavily.
The cardinals announced on Friday morning that they had designated Shreve for the post, opening a spot on the list of 40 men for reserve catcher Matt Wieters. Shreve will be available for the other 29 teams in the coming days, and if not selected, the Cardinals will be able to direct it to Class AAA Memphis, where it will serve as insurance on the left side. Manager Mike Shildt said the team hopes to find an important job in the league, but will welcome him as a member of the system.
The move with Shreve focuses the race for the last place in the Bullpen Cardinals to a duel between left and right, specialist against strikeout rate.
Tyler Webb and John Brebbia, both in the 40s and both still have options, offer favorites for the last place in the bullpen. Tommy Layne would be an out-of-role candidate for the place that is still in the field, and has been successful against left-handed hitters. Shildt confirmed that Mike Mayers, who is out of options, will be on the opening roster, and Alex Reyes had previously been named as an opening day mitigator. John Gant, who will start Friday against the Mets, was told he will be positioned as the long lifter to start the year.
The cardinals are ready to enter the season with a left-handed, Andrew Miller, in the bullpen, Shildt said.
This would put Brebbia, right, in the bullpen.
The weight of the decision, agreed by Shildt, is the Cardinals' opponent for the first four regular season games. In Milwaukee, the Cardinals will face a series of sinister hitters including the National League MVP, Christian Yelich, the former Royals slugger Mike Moustakas, along with Travis Shaw. Eric Thames is also likely to step off the Milwaukee bench.
Shildt noted that the team has a handful of righthanders, like Reyes and Dominic Leone, who can take out their left-handed players.
Probably the final decision will arrive on Monday in Memphis, where the cardinals will play an exhibition game that evening.
The cardinals will open with a bullpen of seven men, and this is the way to get up from Friday morning:
- Jordan Hicks, RHP
- Andrew Miller, LHP
- Mike Mayers, RHP
- Dominic Leone, RHP
- Alex Reyes, RHP
- John Gant, RHP
Brebbia is one of the launchers scheduled to appear Friday afternoon as part of a "back-to-back" test. He came down from a mess loaded with bases Thursday against the Yankees, the team that drafted it.
This story will be updated from Port St. Lucie, Florida.