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X's need to cut roster before opening day

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The Explorers have to cut down to a 23-man roster by Thursday's opener. The Explorers have to cut down to a 23-man roster by Thursday's opener.
SIOUX CITY (KTIV) -

The Explorers play their final exhibition game Monday, facing Sioux  Falls in Yankton. It will be the final chance for the coaching staff to evaluate players on the field.

Sioux City has 28 players in camp, and has to be down to 23 by opening day on Thursday. Manager Steve Montgomery brought 17 pitchers into camp and was going to start the season with a 13-man staff. Now, the X's may carry 11 position players and 12 pitchers.

American Association rules say four of the players must be rookies and a maximum of five can be veterans who have six or more years in pro baseball.

"There's going to be some hard decisions, no doubt about it. Somebody good is going home," said manager Steve Montgomery. "It's a hard decision but you got to have a list. If you come in my office, there is a list sitting there of the next best available. If somebody isn't getting the job done, or we get someone picked up by a major league organization, we got to find the next available arm."

The X's open the regular season on Thursday in Lincoln.

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