Breaking down the Reno Aces' 25-man roster on opening day

Reno Aces
The Reno Aces open the 2019 season this week. (Julian Del Gaudio/NSN)

The Reno Aces kick off their 11th season Thursday against Fresno and open their home slate Tuesday against Albuquerque. The team will be under the leadership of first-year coach Chris Cron. Here is a breakdown of the Aces' opening day 25-man roster.

Right-handed pitchers (nine): Taylor Clarke, Stefan Crichton, Rubby De La Rosa, Joey Krehbiel, Vinny Nittoli, Joel Payamps, Jimmie Sherfy, Braden Shipley, Taylor Widener

Left-handed pitchers (four): Marc Rzepczynski, Robby Scott, Anthony Vasquez, Alex Young

Catchers (two): Caleb Joseph, Alberto Rosario

Infielders (six): Kevin Cron, Domingo Leyba, Wyatt Mathisen, Rob Refsnyder, Kelby Tomlinson, Ildemaro Vargas

Outfielders (four): Abraham Almonte, Andrew Aplin, Tim Locastro, Yasmany Tomás

Injured list (four): OF Matt Szczur, RHP Ricky Nolasco, RHP Artie Lewicki, RHP Troy Scribner

* 10 players on the Aces' opening-day roster were on big-league teams at some point in 2018.

* Taylor Clarke, the Diamondbacks' No. 3 overall prospect, will get the opening day start, supplanting Braden Shipley, who started the last two opening days.

* Shipley was taken off Arizona's 40-man roster this offseason, meaning he can't be called up to the big leagues unless he's put back on the 40 man, which would basically requiring cutting a different player (or putting somebody on the 60-day IL), but he stayed with the organization and will look to get back to the big leagues for a fourth straight season after logging 26 appearances at baseball's top level since 2016.

* Taylor Widener, a right-handed pitcher, is the No. 2 prospect in the Diamondbacks' organization. He will make his Triple-A debut after going 5-8 with a 2.75 ERA in 137.1 innings at Double-A last season. He struck out 176 batters.

* First baseman Kevin Cron is the son of manager Chris Cron (and brother of big-leaguer C.J. Cron). Kevin hasn't made his big-league debut yet, but hit .309 with 22 homers and 97 RBIs in 104 games in Reno last season.

* Along with Cron, shortstop Ildemaro Vargas was a 2018 All-PCL selection. Vargas opened the season with the Diamondbacks but was sent to Triple-A before the minor-league opener. He hit .311 for the Aces last season.

* Yasmany Tomás is back in Reno. The former big-leaguer who signed a $68.5 million deal after coming over from Cuba hit .268/.307/.462 with 48 home runs in 305 big-league games but hasn't appeared in the majors since 2017. Tomás hit .262 with 14 homers in Reno last season.

* Tim Locastro is new name. Locastro had brief big-league appearances with the Los Angeles Dodgers in 2017 and 2018 before being traded to the Yankees last November. He was then shipped him to Arizona in January. Locastro, an outfielder, is a career .292 minor-league hitter with 162 steals. Speed is his main asset.

* The Aces will look to get back to the playoffs after missing the postseason in 2018. Reno has made the playoffs in four of its 10 seasons, winning the PCL and Triple-A titles in 2012.

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