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Updated: January 16th, 2014 2:39pm
Wetmore: My 25-man roster projection, one month before spring training

Wetmore: My 25-man roster projection, one month before spring training

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by Derek Wetmore
1500ESPN.com

Believe it or not, spring training is right around the corner.

One month from today Twins pitchers and catchers will report to Fort Myers, Fla., which many baseball fans consider the unofficial beginning of the baseball season and the end of winter.

With that in mind, here's my current prediction for what the 25-man roster would look like if the Twins broke camp today.

I readily acknowledge that the Twins' version will look different than mine at the end of March. At least one starting pitcher will get hurt (statistically speaking) and other factors like trades or free agent signings could further sculpt the 40-man roster.

Teams also have a penchant for keeping lesser talented players around because they are out of minor league options. I haven't made that distinction here. A player like Vance Worley, for example, could make the team by showing a sign of life in spring training because he can't easily be stashed in the minors. That's understood, but it didn't shape my roster construction. Chris Parmelee may be the most notable position player "snub" in that regard. The Twins probably will value him more than I do and that's fine; this is just one writer's projection.

From my purview, the most important thing that will happen for the Twins in 2014 is that it will bring closter 2015, when Minnesota could sniff competitiveness. For that reason, I've included Alex Presley and Aaron Hicks, even though their skill sets might be redundant. When top prospect Byron Buxton eventually arrives, I think he'll push Hicks to right, so I've just pre-empted that eventual move.

Enough setup, here's the roster: 

Twins projected 25-man roster

Catcher: Josmil Pinto

First baseman: Joe Mauer

Second baseman: Brian Dozier

Third baseman: Trevor Plouffe

Shortstop: Pedro Florimon

Left field: Oswaldo Arcia

Center field: Alex Presley

Right field: Aaron Hicks

Designated hitter: Josh Willingham

Bench:

Kurt Suzuki

Chris Hermann

Eduardo Escobar

Jason Kubel*

Rotation:

Ricky Nolasco

Mike Pelfrey

Phil Hughes

Kevin Correia

Samuel Deduno

Bullpen:

Glen Perkins

Jared Burton

Brian Duensing

Anthony Swarzak

Casey Fien

Caleb Thielbar

Michael Tonkin

*Kubel's inclusion on the active roster would require another player be taken off the 40-man roster. The Twins have a handful of players on the 40-man roster they could cut without blinking, so pick one.

I've stated my case. Now you're tasked with poking holes in this projection. What changes would you make and more importantly why would you make them?

Derek Wetmore is the senior editor for 1500ESPN.com. His previous stops include MLB.com and the Minnesota Daily.
Email Derek | @DerekWetmore
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