Roster mostly set, Maddon still considering options

BRADENTON, Fla. - Heading into the start of Spring Training, there didn't appear to be too many jobs up for grabs. After several weeks of camp, that situation has not changed.

Rays manager Joe Maddon acknowledged the fact that most everything concerning the roster has been decided, save the No. 5 starter, the backup catcher and perhaps a bullpen piece or two. Nevertheless, Maddon pointed out that any situation can change.

"Something can happen during the course of this camp, so you want to stay on top of what's going on with the guys right now," Maddon said. "It is about depth. We have nice depth."

Maddon noted that once the Minor League season starts, he stops trying to influence which players might be brought up during the season. This view was derived through his experience working on the developmental side with the Angels. It frustrated Maddon when the Major League club dictated which Minor League players were called up, even though the developmental staff had more expertise based on watching those players perform.

According to Maddon, the best thing he can do with players who might join the team during the year is to get to know them during the spring, "so that when they do come back up, they walk into the door comfortably and we have good conversation.

"And they know how we do things here. That's the part that's important."

Bill Chastain is a reporter for This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.