Cardinals make most of their roster decisions

Keith Butler would make his 1st opening-day roster

The St. Louis Cardinals have made a series of moves to bring their opening day roster into focus, but a few still remain.

On Friday evening, following the cancellation of their exhibition game in Memphis, the St. Louis Cardinals announced a series of moves to position their opening roster for the regular season. The club optioned pitcher Jorge Rondon to its Triple-A affiliate and re-assigned non-roster invitees David Aardsma, Scott McGregor, Ed Easley, Scott Moore and Stephen Piscotty to Memphis. Earlier in the day, the team re-assigned non-roster invitee Xavier Scruggs to the Triple-A club.

Several other decisions are yet to be formally executed, however. One is that right-hander Keith Butler has secured one of the two final spots in St. Louis' bullpen, this based on comments made by manager Mike Matheny on Friday night. The other position is expected go to non-roster invitee Pat Neshek, but apparently the club will not officially announce that until Monday prior to when they take on the Reds in the season opener in Cincinnati.

Shortstop Pete Kozma will also accompany the team to Cincinnati. He will serve as insurance in case the knee of Mark Ellis forces the second baseman to the disabled list, but there is only room for one of the two infielders on the active roster.

Also yet to be announced is the assignment of pitchers Jason Motte and Jaime Garcia to the 15-day disabled list. These additional moves would get the Cardinals down to their opening day requirement of 25 players.

After the Cardinals outrighted outfielder Joey Butler to Memphis, there are 38 players on the club's 40-man Major League roster. One spot would go to Neshek with the other to be determined.



To see the Cardinals' entire system by level and position, check out the Roster Matrix at The Cardinal Nation blog.



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Brian Walton can be reached via email at brian@thecardinalnationblog.com. Also catch his Cardinals commentary daily at The Cardinal Nation blog. Follow Brian on Twitter.

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