National League preview

BOB ELLIOTT

, Last Updated: 9:46 AM ET

You heard that Roy Halladay packed his Blue Jays bags and headed to Philadelphia. But, what else has happened in the 107 days since the Phillies lost the World Series to the New York Yankees? Toronto Sun baseball columnist Bob Elliott has compiled a list of the major additions and departures as well as the questions that loom as Naional League teams prepare to open spring training.

NATIONAL LEAGUE EAST

ATLANTA BRAVES

ADDITIONS: OF Melky Cabrera, RPs Billy Wagner, Takashi Saito, 1B Troy Glaus, OF Eric Hinske.

DEPARTURES: RHP Javier Vazquez, RPs Rafael Soriano and Mike Gonzalez

UNANSWERED QUESTIONS: Will RF Jason Heyward make the team out of spring training as an every- day player?

- Is this really manager Bobby Cox's final year?

CANADIAN CONTENT: Guelph LHP Scott Diamond was impressive at double-A Mississippi.

PROJECTED PAYROLL: $95-$100 million US.

KEEP AN EYE ON: Reliever Jesse Chavez.

FLORIDA MARLINS

ADDITIONS: INFs Hector Luna, Donnie Murphy and Danny Richar, RPs Seth McClung and Derrick Turnbow, all non-roster invites.

DEPARTURES: OF Jeremy Hermida, RHP Matt Lindstrom, RHP Kiko Calero, 1B Ross Gload, INF Alfredo Amezaga.

UNANSWERED QUESTIONS: Who's on first -- Gaby Sanchez or solid prospect Logan Morrison?

- Who starts after Josh Johnson and Ricky Nolasco? Chris Volstad, Andrew Miller, Anibal Sanchez, Rick VandenHurk and Sean West in line.

CANADIAN CONTENT: Mississauga RP Chris Leroux has shot to earn a bullpen spot.

PROJECTED PAYROLL: $45 million.

KEEP AN EYE ON: OF Bryan Petersen excelled in Arizona Fall League.

NEW YORK METS

ADDITIONS: LF Jason Bay, RHP Kelvim Escobar, OF Gary Matthews.

DEPARTURES: 1B Carlos Delgado.

UNANSWERED QUESTIONS: Who fills in for CF Carlos Beltran (knee) -- Angel Pagan, Fernando Martinez or Matthews?

- Will David Wright fix his power stroke after going from 33 to 10 home runs?

- Can Jose Reyes (torn hamstring) regain his speed and stay healthy?

- Will Johan Santana recover from elbow surgery (bone chips removed)?

CANADIAN CONTENT: 3B Shawn Bowman of Coquitlam, B.C., is on the 40-man and Laval, Que., INF Jonathan Malo will get a look.

PROJECTED PAYROLL: $140 million

KEEP AN EYE ON: 1B Ike Davis, son of ex-Yankees RP Ron Davis.

PHILADELPHIA PHILLIES

ADDITIONS: RHP Roy Halladay, 3B Placido Polanco, C Brian Schneider, RHP Danys Baez, RHP Jose Contreras, IF Juan Castro, 1B Ross Gload.

DEPARTURES: LHP Cliff Lee, 3B Pedro Feliz, RHP Brett Myers, OF Matt Stairs, IF Eric Bruntlett, RHP Chan Ho Park, LHP Scott Eyre.

UNANSWERED QUESTIONS: Who is the fifth man -- RHP Kyle Kendrick or LHP Jamie Moyer?

- Who closes if Brad Lidge (knee and elbow surgeries) isn't ready by Opening Day?

CANADIAN CONTENT: RP Scott Mathieson of Langley, B.C., needs to pitch. If he does not make team, he'll be back after 20 innings at triple-A.

PROJECTED PAYROLL: At least $140 million.

KEEP AN EYE ON: Contreras tries to replace Park.

WASHINGTON NATIONALS

ADDITIONS: C Ivan Rodriguez, RHP Jason Marquis, RP Matt Capps, 2B Adam Kennedy, RP Brian Bruney, RP Eddie Guardado.

DEPARTURES: OF Austin Kearns, 1B Dmitri Young, RHP Mike MacDougal, RHP Saul Rivera, C Josh Bard.

UNANSWERED QUESTIONS: Will Stephen Strasburg open in majors despite never throwing a pitch in the minors?

- Is Jesus Flores the long-term answer behind the plate, now that Rodriguez is here?

- Will Adam Dunn receive a contract extension?

CANADIAN CONTENT: Newmarket INF Peter Orr is in line for a backup job.

PROJECTED PAYROLL: $63 million.

KEEP AN EYE ON: Future closer Drew Storen, their other No. 1 pick, could get to D.C. before Strasburg.

NATIONAL LEAGUE CENTRAL

CHICAGO CUBS

ADDITIONS: CF Marlon Byrd, RHP Carlos Silva, OF Xavier Nady.

DEPARTURES: OF Milton Bradley, RHP Kevin Gregg, RHP Aaron Heilman, OF Reed Johnson, OF Jake Fox, INF Aaron Miles.

UNANSWERED QUESTIONS: How close is SS Starlin Castro? An impact player, he's one Lou Piniella could fall in love with this spring. Ryan Theriot would move to second.

- LHP Ted Lilly is out until at least May (shoulder surgery). Among the fill-in candidates are Sean Marshall, Jeff Samardzija, Tom Gorzelanny, Silva and Rule V pick Mike Parisi.

- Do they sign 1B Derrek Lee to an extension or let him enter his walk year?

CANADIAN CONTENT: Ryan Dempster, of Gibsons B.C., led Cubs with 200 innings last season.

PROJECTED PAYROLL: $138 million.

KEEP AN EYE ON: CF Sam Fuld, 28, with a .403 on-base mark in 124 big-league plate appearances, could provide Piniella a leadoff option with a strong camp.

CINCINNATI REDS

ADDITIONS: SS Orlando Cabrera, LHP Aroldis Chapman.

DEPARTURES: LF Jonny Gomes.

UNANSWERED QUESTIONS: Will they eventually re-sign free agent Gomes? Otherwise it is a mix of Laynce Nix, Juan Francisco, Chris Heisey, Todd Frazier and Chris Dickerson.

CANADIAN CONTENT: Etobicoke's 1B Joey Votto coming off top-five season in: Average (.322), on-base mark (.414), slugging (.567) and OPS (.981).

PROJECTED PAYROLL: $75 million.

KEEP AN EYE ON: Cuban sensation Chapman has a fastball that touches 100 m.p.h., and could win a rotation spot after working this winter in Arizona with pitching coach Bryan Price.

HOUSTON ASTROS

ADDITIONS: RPs Matt Lindstrom, Brandon Lyon, 3B Pedro Feliz, RHP Brett Myers, manager Brad Mills, pitching coach Brad Arnsberg.

DEPARTURES: RPs Jose Valverde, LaTroy Hawkins, SS Miguel Tejada.

UNANSWERED QUESTIONS: Are rookies C Jason Castro and 3B Chris Johnson ready?

- Can RHP Felipe Paulino harness his 98-m.p.h. stuff?

CANADIAN CONTENT: Jimmy Van Ostrand, of Richmond, B.C., will be at triple-A Round Rock, after 16 homers in double-A, possibly Ottawa RP T.J. Burton, too.

PROJECTED PAYROLL $93 million.

KEEP AN EYE ON: Brian Bogusevic, first-round draft pick as a LHP, who failed and was converted to outfield.

MILWAUKEE BREWERS

ADDITIONS: LHP Randy Wolf, LHP Doug Davis, CF Carlos Gomez, C Gregg Zaun, C George Kottaras, RP LaTroy Hawkins.

DEPARTURES: CF Mike Cameron, SS J.J. Hardy, C Jason Kendall, INF Felipe Lopez, RHP Braden Looper, RP David Weathers.

UNANSWERED QUESTIONS: Who fills final two rotation spots after Wolf, Davis and Yovani Gallardo? Holdovers Manny Parra, Dave Bush, Jeff Suppan and Chris Narveson will battle.

- Backup job behind Zaun is up for grabs, with Matt Treanor and Kottaras contending.

- Does OF Jim Edmonds have anything left after a year off to fill a reserve spot?

- Will Rule V LHP Chuck Lofgren stick?

CANADIAN CONTENT: John Axford, from Port Dover, Ont., was a September callup and is in bullpen mix. Markham C Kottaras gets a shot at back up. London OF Adam Stern and RP Alexandre Periard, St. Eustache, Que., are at big-league camp. GM Doug Melvin, Chatham, and assistant GM Gord Ash of Toronto make the Brewers Canada's Team with 16 Canucks in the minors in 2009.

PROJECTED PAYROLL: $85 million.

KEEP AN EYE ON: RP David Riske is ahead of schedule after Tommy John surgery in June.

PITTSBURGH PIRATES

ADDITIONS: RP Octavio Dotel, RHP Brendan Donnelly, LHP Javier Lopez, 2B Akinori Iwamura, INF Bobby Crosby, OF Ryan Church

DEPARTURES: RP Matt Capps.

UNANSWERED QUESTIONS: Is RHP Kevin Hart or RHP Daniel McCutchen the fifth starter?

- Which two of three win lineup spots -- 1B Jeff Clement, RF-1B Garrett Jones or RF Church?

CANADIAN CONTENT: Luke Carlin, Aylmer, Que., hit .321 at triple-A Reno and Regina's Dustin Molleken impressed at double-A Altoona.

PROJECTED PAYROLL: $36 million.

KEEP AN EYE ON: RHP Brian Bass was 4-4, with a 4.84 ERA in 49 appearances with Orioles in 2009, Bucs hope he'll contribute 90 innings.

ST. LOUIS CARDINALS

ADDITIONS: RHP Brad Penny, LHP Rich Hill.

DEPARTURES: INF Mark DeRosa, RHPs Joel Pineiro, Todd Wellemeyer, John Smoltz and Brad Thompson, OF Rick Ankiel, INF Khalil Greene, INF Troy Glaus, INF Joe Thurston.

UNANSWERED QUESTIONS: Can new hitting coach Mark McGwire do his job without distractions?

- Will they re-sign free agent Smoltz? Or will RHP Kyle McClellan, RHP Mitch Boggs or Hill be the fifth man?

- Can rookie David Freese make it as an everyday third baseman?

CANADIAN CONTENT: Blake Hawksworth of North Vancouver worked in 30 games and should hold on to his bullpen spot.

PROJECTED PAYROLL: $105-$110 million

KEEP AN EYE ON: INF Joe Mather recovering from a hamate bone injury, hopes to earn job as an extra man.

NATIONAL LEAGUE WEST

ARIZONA DIAMONDBACKS

ADDITIONS: 1B Adam LaRoche, 2B Kelly Johnson, RHP Edwin Jackson, RHP Ian Kennedy, RHP Aaron Heilman, RHP Bob Howry.

DEPARTURES: RHP Max Scherzer, LHP Doug Davis, INF Chad Tracy, OF Eric Byrnes, LHP Daniel Schlereth, LHP Scott Schoeneweis.

UNANSWERED QUESTIONS: Who will be fifth behind starters Brandon Webb, Dan Haren, Jackson and Kennedy? RHPs Billy Buckner, Rodrigo Lopez, Kevin Mulvey and Bryan Augenstein are the options.

CANADIAN CONTENT: Edmonton's David Cooper was at class-A Visailia last season.

PROJECT PAYROLL: $79 million.

KEEP AN EYE ON: LHP Jordan Norberto was at double-A Mobile and pitching winter ball in the Dominican, fanning 15 in 13 innings.

COLORADO ROCKIES

ADDITIONS: C Miguel Olivo, 3B Melvin Mora.

DEPARTURES: C Yorvit Torrealba, RHP Jason Marquis, 3B Garrett Atkins.

UNANSWERED QUESTIONS: Is Jeff Francis ready to make 35 starts after missing 2009 with a shoulder injury? Tim Redding will start if Francis isn't ready.

- Who gets final two bullpen spots? Manny Corpas, Matt Daley, Justin Speier, Jimmy Gobble, Juan Rincon or Redding?

CANADIAN CONTENT: Francis of North Delta, B.C., won 17 games to help Rockies to a World Series berth in 2007.

KEEP AN EYE ON: LHP Greg Smith, acquired in Matt Holliday deal, after throwing 190 innings with A's in 2008.

LOS ANGELES DODGERS

ADDITIONS: INF Jamey Carroll, RHP Justin Miller, OF Reed Johnson.

DEPARTURES: 2B Orlando Hudson, OF Juan Pierre, LHP Randy Wolf, CEO Jamie McCourt.

UNANSWERED QUESTIONS: Who's on second -- Ronnie Belliard, Blake DeWitt or Jamey Carroll?

CANADIAN CONTENT: Montreal C Russell Martin saw his numbers slip but he had his Dodgers in post-season play again last season.

PROJECTED PAYROLL: $100 million.

KEEP AN EYE ON: OF Xavier Paul had just 116 at-bats in minors in 2009 (staph infection, ankle), but hit .316 with an .841 OPS at triple-A a year before. Could be Manny Ramirez's caddy.

SAN DIEGO PADRES

ADDITIONS: RHP Jon Garland, OF Scott Hairston, OF Jerry Hairston, C Yorvit Torrealba, PH Matt Stairs.

DEPARTURES: 3B Kevin Kouzmanoff.

UNANSWERED QUESTIONS: Who is fifth in the rotation -- Mat Latos, Wade LeBlanc, Josh Geer or Cesar Ramos?

CANADIAN CONTENT: Pinch-hitter Stairs of Fredericton, N.B.

PROJECTED PAYROLL: $40 million.

KEEP AN EYE ON: OF Aaron Cunningham could win a backup job.

SAN FRANCISCO GIANTS

ADDITIONS: INF Mark DeRosa, 1B Aubrey Huff.

DEPARTURES: OF Randy Winn

UNANSWERED QUESTIONS: Who wins right field job -- Nate Schierholtz or an Eugenio Velez and Andres Torres platoon?

- Can top prospect Madison Bumgarner, 20, hold on to No. 5 starter's role?

CANADIAN CONTENT: Skylar Stromsmoe, of Etzikom, Alta., was at class-A San Jose and Salem-Keizer.

PROJECTED PAYROLL: $100 million.

KEEP AN EYE ON: LF Thomas Neal, 22, hit 22 homers with 90 RBIs and a 1.010 OPS at San Jose.


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