Can’t Miss Clutch Cards: My First Roster

These past few months I had the privilege of being the first person to construct a roster with the 2017 Clutch Cards. This is my first “Can’t Miss Clutch Cards” roster! Honestly this wasn’t my first rough draft of a team, nor is it my tournament ready team either. Generally most of my teams I made were high on base, or had a powerful starting rotation. This was more of an all-around roster, which I felt would be better for those reading. (Don’t worry, it still has plenty of New York bias.) It has your classic ace in Madison Bumgarner, a balanced bullpen (5 righty, 3 lefty), solid defense (2 gold gloves), two speedsters, a balanced lineup (lefty/righty alternating), all positions covered by the bench, 3 legitimate power hitters, and a flame-throwing closer.

My Starting Rotation (Salary: 1,815)

  1. Madison Bumgarner [SP] [L] (630)
  2. Cole Hamels [SP] [L] (315)
  3. Anthony DeSclafani [SP] [R] (300)
  4. Steven Matz, [SP] [L] (285)
  5. Steven Wright [SP] [R] (285)

My Bullpen (Salary: 1,170)

  1. Dellin Betances [RP] [R] (205)
  2. Tyler Clippard [RP] [R] (180)
  3. Mike Morin [RP] [R] (130)
  4. Kevin Quakenbush [RP] [R] (95)
  5. Jordan Lyles [RP] [R] (55)
  6. Tony Sipp [RP] [L] (130)
  7. Oliver Perez [RP] [L] (120)
  8. Aroldis Chapman [CP] [L] (255)

My Starting Lineup (Salary: 2,815)

  1. Dee Gordon [2B] [L] (370)
  2. Francisco Lindor [SS] [S] (415)
  3. Gary Sanchez [C] [R] (545)
  4. Jason Heyward [RF] [L] (365)
  5. Khris Davis [LF] [R] (250)
  6. Mitch Moreland [1B] [L] (285)
  7. Chris Carter [DH] [R] (235)
  8. Chase Headley [3B] [S] (185)
  9. Billy Hamilton [CF] [S] (165)

My Bench (Salary: 195)

  1. Chris Owings [SS/CF] [R] (90)
  2. Ryan Zimmerman [1B] [R] (55)
  3. Ryan Flaherty [U] [L] (50)

25 Man Roster (Salary: 5990)

Home Stadium: New York (A)

LH Batters (Or SH vs. RH Pitcher) HR 1 number lower.

New York (A) Pitchers: Above effect is negated.


I am a big fan of the alternating handedness in the lineup/bullpen. It gives me an upper hand with strategy cards, and keeps my opponent off balance with theirs. This teams biggest weakness is going to be getting on base. Most of my cheaper hitters are low-average power hitters. At least Kris Davis and Chris Carter both come with home run icons. My bench has minimal depth, but provides a speed with Chris Owings. Ryan Flaherty could be used as a defensive replacement after Owings is used as a pinch runner. Ryan Zimmerman’s best use is his R+1 on base if your opponent uses a L+ pitcher.

Here is my team rating:

Power: A
Sanchez, Davis, Carter, and Moreland. New York Stadium will only make them stronger.

Contact: C+
Go big or go home with the power hitters. Five Onbase 11 +0’s in a row at the end of the lineup may be a problem.

Rotation: B-
MadBum is a legend. Given our game doesn’t have injuries, these other 4 major leaguers are solid and proven. Hamels isn’t a World Series MVP anymore, but he did just throw a no-hitter in 2015.

Bullpen: B
I really pride myself on a balanced bullpen of lefty/righty +1’s and +2’s, which this bullpen has 4 of. It even has a few guys with smaller mistake zones, like 1 or 1-2.

Bench: C
This bench has the bare necessities. Nothing more, nothing less. We will see how the game adapts to bench role players.

Defense: A
An outfielder has a gold glove, and an infielder has a gold glove. My defense up the middle stacked (+9), my battery is a 12 with MadBum, and my outfield is a 10!

Did I have too much bias making this team? Maybe. Let it be known though that this team won the first ever game of Clutch Cards final product. A 9th inning comeback against Kenley Jansen, the #2 rated closer in Clutch (behind Zach Britton).

Next on Can’t Miss Clutch Cards: Where was Zach Britton on October 4th, 2016?

Sean Norberg

Co-Creator of Clutch Baseball. Grew up on Long Island, NY. Life-long Yankee fan, teacher, and coach.
Created his own cards as a kid using index cards and aluminum foil for holographic cards.