By Andrew Fillipponi

PITTSBURGH (93-7 The Fan) – Coming off a sweep of the Rangers in Texas, The Fan’s Andrew Fillipponi believes that we can safely project the roster that the Pirates will take into at least one playoff game early next month.

The pitchers will feature Burnett, Liriano, Morton, and Cole as the starters and Melancon, Watson, Wilson, Gomez, Mazarro, Grilli, Locke, and Morris out of the bullpen. Andrew is least confident in the last three spots. Locke and Morris could be replaced with Cumpton and/or Farnsworth.

Catchers will be Martin and Buck. Tony Sanchez should be left off simply because there is no room for personal catchers and Buck is more accomplished as a hitter off the bench.

Infielders will be Morneau, Walker, Barmes, and Alvarez with Mercer and Gaby Sanchez platooning and off the bench. In the final spot, “Jones barely makes (the) team” as a lefty bat off the bench. Snider can do that job as well but Jones has position flexibility.

Outfielders McCutchen, Byrd, and Marte are no-brainers. Tabata deserves to be the fourth selection but Andrew thinks that Pie could be the choice as the best pinch-runner on the squad.

Guys Andrew thinks will be left to watch the game include Tabata, Snider, Lambo, Tony Sanchez, Hughes, Cumpton, and Farnsworth.

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