The RailCats have released their 23-man roster, making not too many surprise moves in the process.

Here’s the opening day look:
RHP James Baker
RHP Chris Chavez
LHP Zeb Engle
RHP Jack Frawley
LHP Derrick Gordon
RHP Brian Grening
LHP Jeremy Hauer
RHP Will Krout
RHP David Nathanson
RHP Nolan Nicholson
RHP Scott Shaw

Johnny Bowden
Mike Valadez

1B/DH Jeff Beachum
2B Brad Boyer
3B Chris Carrara
SS Kyle Haines
Util. Louis Ott
1B/DH Mike Rohde

RF Christian Guerrero
Util. Toddric Johnson
LF/CF Adam Klein
LF/CF Mike Massaro

Inactive List
INF Brian Kolb
P Carlos Rivas

Shaw is tabbed as the opening day starter with a rotation of Frawley, Nicholson and Gordon. Chavez is most likely to act as a closer, manager Greg Tagert said, and Nathanson, who came in with starter experience, will also likely be a late-inning thrower.

The infield and outfield were the toughest spots to garner, with seven overall returners. Boyer and Haines had experience together, making them a decent combo at second and short, Tagert felt. First base will be platooned at the outset with Beachum and Rohde sharing time, depending on who can perform the job best and which can add offensive bursts.

Brian Kolb and Carlos Rivas will start the season on the inactive list, as Kolb was too valuable to cut, but too tough to find a position for, and Rivas has yet to arrive from Venezuela.

Outfielder Cody McMorris was the toughest cut to make, Tagert said, because he had the best performance and consistency through camp. But, with returners at every outfield position, McMorris would be improperly used as a player off the bench. The RailCats found an opening in Edinburg in the North American League and got McMorris a job there.

Read more about the 2011 roster in Tuesday’s Times of Northwest Indiana.