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Brewers' Opening Day roster set
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03/29/2003  4:43 PM ET 
Brewers' Opening Day roster set
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MILWAUKEE -- The Brewers will open the 2003 season with a 12-man pitching staff, seven players on their first Major League Opening Day roster, four left-handed relievers and two Rule 5 draft picks who have never played above Single-A.

On Saturday, the team placed pitcher Nick Neugebauer on the 15-day disabled list and purchased the minor league contracts of catchers Eddie Perez and Keith Osik and outfielder John Vander Wal, finalizing a 25-man roster that unofficially fell into place with a flurry of moves Wednesday.

"You've got to look at the big picture," manager Ned Yost said. "Who can you keep, and still be covered in every aspect? There's a lot that goes into it besides just picking the best 25 guys."

The roster:

Starting pitchers (5): Ben Sheets, Glendon Rusch, Todd Ritchie, Wayne Franklin and Matt Kinney.

Relief pitchers (7): Mike DeJean, Valerio De Los Santos, Matt Ford, John Foster, Curtis Leskanic, Shane Nance and Luis Vizcaino.

Catchers (2): Perez and Osik.

Infielders (6): Royce Clayton, Enrique Cruz, Keith Ginter, Wes Helms, Richie Sexson and Eric Young.

Outfielders (5): Jason Conti, Jeffrey Hammonds, Scott Podsednik, Alex Sanchez and Vander Wal.

complete coverage: spring training 2003
Two other outfielders -- Geoff Jenkins and Brady Clark -- are on the 15-day disabled list and will head to Double-A Huntsville to get some at-bats. Both are eligible to return on April 5. Right-handed reliever Jayson Durocher is on the 60-day DL after undergoing elbow surgery.

Milwaukee has 39 players on its 40-man roster.

"I don't like to be at 40," general manager Doug Melvin said. "I like to be at 38 or 39. I like to have a spot if somebody comes across the waiver wire, you can claim them."

The Brewers will travel to St. Louis on Sunday morning for a workout, and are scheduled to open the regular season against the defending NL Central Champion Cardinals on Monday afternoon.

Adam McCalvy is a reporter for based in Milwaukee. This story was not subject to approval by Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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