Minnesota had no fewer than a dozen options for their bullpen as spring training was underway. Optioning Michael Tonkin yesterday was an expected step towards opening day, but today's announcement that Ryan Pressly has been optioned more or less puts things in perspective.
After making the opening day roster in 2013, Pressly's Major League debut in 2014 didn't come until July 24. He still gave the Twins 28.1 innings of 2.86 ERA, but his peripherals and the fact that he still has options remaining meant he was never a guarantee for a roster spot. We'll still see him with the big league club at some point in 2015, he just won't be going north with the club in early April.
With Tonkin and Pressly both off the books for the time being, it's increasingly likely that Rule 5 selection J.R. Graham will get that seventh and final bullpen spot. Barring injury or something unexpected, this means that your opening day bullpen should be:
- Glen Perkins, closer
- Casey Fien, set-up
- Tim Stauffer, RHP
- J.R. Graham, RHP
- Brian Duensing, LHP
- Caleb Thielbar, LHP
- Tommy Milone / Mike Pelfrey, long relief