There are many objectives of Spring Training. One of the objectives every Spring Training is to evaluate players for the roster.
Some of the roster spots are spoken for prior to the calendar turning to February; however, there are spots for the taking every year if the evaluators are impressed enough by a player and the right situation avails itself.
This Spring Training, Rizzo has hinted that centerfield, shortstop, and the 5th starter are open for competition. We know there will be 8 starting position players and 5 starting pitchers and 7 relievers and 5 bench players making up the 25 man Opening Day roster.
Injuries and trades open up spots each Spring Training which is why you never know exactly how the roster will look. Dan Uggla, Michael A. Taylor, Reed Johnson, Matt den Dekker and Clint Robinson were all surprises to make last year’s Opening Day roster. Clint Robinson stood out above the rest of the bench hopefuls in Spring Training last year. The bench was supposed to be Lobaton, Espinosa, McLouth, and Tyler Moore leaving 1 spot on the bench then the injuries happened to McLouth, Span, Werth and Rendon which opened 4 more spots to add to the 1 spot, and that is how Uggla, Taylor, Johnson, den Dekker and Robinson made the Opening Day roster.
The #Nats have announced their 2015 Opening Day 25-man roster: pic.twitter.com/5KEq7xrcBF
— Washington Nationals (@Nationals) April 5, 2015
The projected bench this season was crowded before Spring Training began with returning players like Lobaton, Clint Robinson, Michael A. Taylor, Matt den Decker, and Tyler Moore. Add to that the off-season signing of Stephen Drew, and there were 6 players vying for 5 spots before all of the non-roster invitees were added to the mix. To complicate matters further, there will be 7 players for 5 spots when Trea Turner takes the starting shortstop spot which would push Danny Espinosa to the bench.
Is there any way that a Scott Sizemore or Chris Heisey could make this team?