• The Cuts Continue, 7 Twins Reassigned

    On Sunday morning, seven players from Minnesota Twins spring training were told that they would not be on the Twins Opening Day roster. The most intriguing name of the bunch was infielder Chris Colabello. This leaves the Twins with 42 players on their spring roster.



    Here are the players sent to minor league camp:

    Chris Colabello was last year's feel-good minor league story. He has had a great past 12 months. At this time last year, he has just signed with the Twins after being named Baseball America's Independent Leagues player of the year in 2011. He made the New Britain roster and was a mainstay in the middle of their lineup all season. He received the invite to spring training and made a name for himself on a national (international?) level with some big games and big hits for Team Italy in the WBC. He returned to the Twins late last week. He will likely spend most of the season in Rochester this year, but don't be at all surprised if the Twins call his name if they have a need for a bat.

    Brian Dinkelman hit .301 for the Twins in 2011 in a part-time role. He spent all of 2012 with Rochester and didn't play a lot due to injury. He provides the Twins with depth in the corner outfield spots as well as the right side of the infield.

    Clete Thomas got some time with the Twins in 2012 after spending his entire career in the Tigers organization. He returned to the Twins on a minor league deal after hitting for power with the Red Wings. He'll return to Rochester this spring and play all around the outfield.

    Mark Sobolewski was selected by the Twins in the minor league portion of December's Rule 5 draft from the Blue Jays organization. He showed well for himself in Twins camp, displaying good defense. He likely would have competed with Deibinson Romero for playing time but Romero has still not arrived from the Dominican Republic due to visa issues.

    Deolis Guerra came off of the 40 man roster last November, but he returned on a minor league contract. He pitched very well in the Venezuelan Winter League and was excited to represent his country in the WBC. Unfortunately, shoulder pain was diagnosed as a blood clot. He will be having surgery in the near future.

    Shairon Martis was invited to big league camp after coming to the Twins in a minor trade last summer. He didn't pitch much for the Twins before joining Team Netherlands in Taiwan, and then Japan, and now in San Francisco for the WBC. He should factor into the Red Wings pitching staff this season.

    Eric Fryer got time with the Pirates the past two season. He played well in spring, but he could find himself in either New Britain or Rochester.

    The Twins now have 42 players in big league camp including 22 pitchers (5 non-roster), 4 catchers (1 non-roster), 9 infielders (3 non-roster) and 7 outfielders (2 non-roster).
    This article was originally published in blog: The Cuts Continue, 7 Twins Reassigned started by Seth Stohs
    Comments 71 Comments
    1. Nick Nelson's Avatar
      Nick Nelson -
      Quote Originally Posted by Kavan View Post
      Can someone explain to me why we are excited about Colabello. Isn't he 29 and thus far topped out at AA experience? I'd love it if he were a prospect, but he's not going to get any better.... am I missing something?
      Just a nice story, that's all. In seasons like this one, sometimes those are the things you root for.
    1. USAFChief's Avatar
      USAFChief -
      Quote Originally Posted by Kavan View Post
      Can someone explain to me why we are excited about Colabello. Isn't he 29 and thus far topped out at AA experience? I'd love it if he were a prospect, but he's not going to get any better.... am I missing something?
      He's not Drew Butera?
    1. IdahoPilgrim's Avatar
      IdahoPilgrim -
      It's a chance for those who are going to gripe about management to add something new to their arsenal. Give it a couple of months and we'll be back to complaining about this or that pitcher who hasn't been given a fair shot or about Gardy's batting order or some off--season signing (or lack of signing).

      Quote Originally Posted by Kavan View Post
      Can someone explain to me why we are excited about Colabello. Isn't he 29 and thus far topped out at AA experience? I'd love it if he were a prospect, but he's not going to get any better.... am I missing something?
    1. Mr. Brooks's Avatar
      Mr. Brooks -
      Or perhaps some of us think that if they are going to shed payroll significantly, and presumably rebuild, that maybe any extra AB's they have available should go to someone who actually has a chance to be part of that rebuilt team, rather than waste them on a 29 year old career minor leaguer?
      If any AB's go to Collabello then it doesnt look as much like rebuilding as it does just plain being cheap.
      I think after buying them a very nice new stadium, its not too much for the paying customers to ask that they do one or the other of rebuild OR build a team with an appropriate payroll.
      I am not demanding they be better, I am not demanding they raise payroll. I am fully behind cutting payroll and rebuilding, as long as that is what they are actually doing.
    1. glunn's Avatar
      glunn -
      If Colabello can perform in Rochester, then I would expect that he will be called up at some point. This move makes sense to me, considering his lack of experience at AAA and the need to get Parmelee maximum game time during spring training.
    1. ashburyjohn's Avatar
      ashburyjohn -
      Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Brooks View Post
      This isnt Disney, this is major league baseball.
      I get that Chris Colabello is a nice story and all, but if he's one of your 25 best players, you ought to be ashamed and embarrassed as an organization.
      The guy OPS'd only .836 as a first baseman at AA last year, as a 28 year old playing against a bunch of kids many not even old enough to buy a beer.
      Just a quibble, but AA isn't quite as young a league as you make it out to be. Of the top 100 Eastern League batters (by plate appearances) in 2012, 5 were in their age-20 season or younger, and 4 more reached 21 in the season - maybe you meant 9% by "many". Even fewer when you look at the top 100 pitchers, I see 4 in their age-21 season, none younger. Someone posted age averages per league level a while back, but just eyeballing it the average EL age seems about 24. Yes, Colabello was old for the league, but not even the oldest.
    1. Mr. Brooks's Avatar
      Mr. Brooks -
      If you are only filtering by the batting leaders, of course not very many of them are going to be under 21. It would make sense that the older hitters would have the better hitting numbers. I would guess that if you look at ALL the hitters in AA, the number is probably closer to 15 to 20%.

      And yes, being 4 years older than the average competition is a huge difference when it comes to the minor leagues.
      Look at how the Twins college relievers put up video game numbers in rookie ball last year.
    1. mike wants wins's Avatar
      mike wants wins -
      Quote Originally Posted by Kavan View Post
      Can someone explain to me why we are excited about Colabello. Isn't he 29 and thus far topped out at AA experience? I'd love it if he were a prospect, but he's not going to get any better.... am I missing something?
      Because people want to hear Gardy say "CCesie"?
    1. ashburyjohn's Avatar
      ashburyjohn -
      Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Brooks View Post
      If you are only filtering by the batting leaders, of course not very many of them are going to be under 21. It would make sense that the older hitters would have the better hitting numbers. I would guess that if you look at ALL the hitters in AA, the number is probably closer to 15 to 20%.
      There might be a greater percentage of the really young batters getting 50 plate appearances or pitchers getting 20 innings, I don't know; but when evaluating Colabello's performance those smaller numbers for comparison end up being noise. I re-sorted by plate appearances and innings pitched instead of the defaults, and the counts I quoted remain essentially the same.

      Colabello at 28 is significantly older than his competition. As I said, my observation was only a quibble - characterizing the league as "many" being under legal drinking age is not false if that word means under 10%.
    1. Mr. Brooks's Avatar
      Mr. Brooks -
      Quote Originally Posted by ashburyjohn View Post
      There might be a greater percentage of the really young batters getting 50 plate appearances or pitchers getting 20 innings, I don't know; but when evaluating Colabello's performance those smaller numbers for comparison end up being noise. I re-sorted by plate appearances and innings pitched instead of the defaults, and the counts I quoted remain essentially the same.

      Colabello at 28 is significantly older than his competition. As I said, my observation was only a quibble - characterizing the league as "many" being under legal drinking age is not false if that word means under 10%.
      So if someone is popular, and its said that they "have many friends", are you going to quibble with them because the number of friends they actually have is less than 10% of the world population?
      Geez, man. Its a significant amount. Its not like its .9%.
      If 1 in every 10 guys he's facing is 20 years old, I'd say thats going to be quite a boost to your numbers, as a 28 year old first baseman.
      Look, I dont mean to beat up on what, by all accounts is a harworking guy with a good attitude. I'm just saying that he was pretty old for the league, and still put up pedestrian numbers, considering the position he plays.
      With the exception of the Miami Marlins (who should be embarrassed as an orginazation), name 1 other team in baseball who would bring this guy north?
      I appreciate his work ethic, and his desire, and his love of the game. There are many pro athletes gliding by on talent alone who could learn something from this guy, and I respect that.
      But if I want a feel good story, I'll pop in The Mighty Ducks, or I'll watch the Olympics. For me, there are plenty of outlets for feel good stories, I dont need them in professional athletics.
      If they truly think he's one of the 25 best guys on the team, then fine, bring him north, I'll root for him if he's on the team.
      But if they are only basing it on the tiny sample size of ST and the WBC, or if they are only doing it because they want a feel good story, then I'm sorry, to me that is a novelty, better left to the Bill Veeck's and PT Barnum's of the world.
      Just my 2cents.
    1. Brad Swanson's Avatar
      Brad Swanson -
      Quote Originally Posted by Kavan View Post
      Can someone explain to me why we are excited about Colabello. Isn't he 29 and thus far topped out at AA experience? I'd love it if he were a prospect, but he's not going to get any better.... am I missing something?
      I think we're all forgetting the obvious marketing tie-in.

      Attachment 3526
    1. nicksaviking's Avatar
      nicksaviking -
      Quote Originally Posted by USAFChief View Post
      He's not Drew Butera?
      Exactly, I'm not sure why it's hard for people to understand it's an either/or situation. What other options for the 25th spot are people expecting to emerge? I don't get the irrational anamosity toward Colabello's age when the likely other option is 29-year-old Drew Butera. That is unless someone is really, really cheering for 27-year-old Wilkin Rameriz or 30-year-old Brandon Boggs. Or is it possible they are still pining for 42-year-old Jim Thome?
    1. Mr. Brooks's Avatar
      Mr. Brooks -
      Quote Originally Posted by nicksaviking View Post
      Exactly, I'm not sure why it's hard for people to understand it's an either/or situation. What other options for the 25th spot are people expecting to emerge? I don't get the irrational anamosity toward Colabello's age when the likely other option is 29-year-old Drew Butera. That is unless someone is really, really cheering for 27-year-old Wilkin Rameriz or 30-year-old Brandon Boggs. Or is it possible they are still pining for 42-year-old Jim Thome?
      I cant speak for anyone else, but for me it goes like this:
      If you are truly cutting payroll drastically because you are rebuilding, then give the roster spot to someone who has a chance to be part of that rebuild.
      If you are not rebuilding, then use some of that money to go out and sign someone who will actually be an above replacement level player.
      Yes, if we are just going to throw the roster spot away on someone who is not part of the rebuild then I would rather have it be Jim Thome, the future first ballot HOF'er who has proven he can hit MLB pitching, rather than the 29 year old career minor leaguer who has not.
      Or does someone in here actually think we've found a future starting first baseman here in Collabello?
    1. Thrylos's Avatar
      Thrylos -
      Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Brooks View Post
      I cant speak for anyone else, but for me it goes like this:
      If you are truly cutting payroll drastically because you are rebuilding, then give the roster spot to someone who has a chance to be part of that rebuild.
      If you are not rebuilding, then use some of that money to go out and sign someone who will actually be an above replacement level player.
      Yes, if we are just going to throw the roster spot away on someone who is not part of the rebuild then I would rather have it be Jim Thome, the future first ballot HOF'er who has proven he can hit MLB pitching, rather than the 29 year old career minor leaguer who has not.
      Or does someone in here actually think we've found a future starting first baseman here in Collabello?
      I think that someone in their late 20s can have a place in a rebuilding team and potentially follow in a contending young team (if the rebuild is successful) as a bat off the bench and/or as an occasional starter (think Barry Larkin/Randy Bush - role not age)

      Would that be Colabello? I don't know. But I would not dismiss anyone from a rebuilding team unless they are the wrong side of 30 (like plenty of other players in this Twins' "rebuilding" team...)

      My feelings about Thome in a Twins' uniform were the same as my feelings about Favre in a Vikings uniform (HOFer or not.) WHY?
    1. Seth Stohs's Avatar
      Seth Stohs -
      Obviously I think that Colabello was the feel-good story last year, and for him to make the big leagues would be a tremendous human-interest, great story. But 1.) The Twins aren't going to call anyone up just because it's a nice story, and 2.) he can absolutely have a nice role as a bench player, pinch hitter, fill-in at 1B/DH. I'd much rather Colabello do that than someone like Arcia sitting the bench for that role or something like that. he can hit. I don't care what his age is.
    1. Kavan's Avatar
      Kavan -
      Quote Originally Posted by Seth Stohs View Post
      Obviously I think that Colabello was the feel-good story last year, and for him to make the big leagues would be a tremendous human-interest, great story. But 1.) The Twins aren't going to call anyone up just because it's a nice story, and 2.) he can absolutely have a nice role as a bench player, pinch hitter, fill-in at 1B/DH. I'd much rather Colabello do that than someone like Arcia sitting the bench for that role or something like that. he can hit. I don't care what his age is.

      Cool, I'm on board with a human interest story. I only bring up the age because I got the impression people were painting him as a budding prospect or something. I hope he gets his cup of coffee, and I hope he's successful, but he doesn't seem like a guy that is going to be in our long term plans. In the short term, I completely agree we could use anyone that can hit the ball off the bench.
    1. Mr. Brooks's Avatar
      Mr. Brooks -
      Quote Originally Posted by Seth Stohs View Post
      Obviously I think that Colabello was the feel-good story last year, and for him to make the big leagues would be a tremendous human-interest, great story. But 1.) The Twins aren't going to call anyone up just because it's a nice story, and 2.) he can absolutely have a nice role as a bench player, pinch hitter, fill-in at 1B/DH. I'd much rather Colabello do that than someone like Arcia sitting the bench for that role or something like that. he can hit. I don't care what his age is.
      I guess I'm not as sure as you are that he can hit. With his age, and as many career minor league PA's as he has under his belt, I would think he could have put up much more dominant AA numbers if he really could hit at the type of MLB level that you want from strictly a DH/PH option.

      Put it this way: Who are you trusting to hit MLB pitching, RIGHT NOW, Chris Collabello, or Jim Thome, even at this age?
      I'm betting on Thome 10 times out of 10, even at this age.
      So if that is all you want, is a PH/occasional DH, why not just pony up the $1million and grab Thome for that role?
      If the reason is you dont want to take AB's from younger guys who have a future on this team, great, I can buy that and agree. But if the reason is you'd rather give those AB's to Chris Collabello, well to me the only explanation for that is they want to save $600k, which is pretty dang pathetic given how far they've already slashed payroll.

      Obviously this boat has sunk, due to Arcia's ST injury, but I think they could have gotten him 450+ PA's on the big club.
      Arcia could start in RF, move Parmalee to 1B, move Justin to DH. Doumit becomes the backup catcher and the thump off your bench.
      I know Doumit might feel slighted by this since we signed him to play, but I'd just tell him thats how it goes on a rebuilding team sometimes.
    1. Mr. Brooks's Avatar
      Mr. Brooks -
      Quote Originally Posted by thrylos98 View Post
      I think that someone in their late 20s can have a place in a rebuilding team and potentially follow in a contending young team (if the rebuild is successful) as a bat off the bench and/or as an occasional starter (think Barry Larkin/Randy Bush - role not age)

      Would that be Colabello? I don't know. But I would not dismiss anyone from a rebuilding team unless they are the wrong side of 30 (like plenty of other players in this Twins' "rebuilding" team...)

      My feelings about Thome in a Twins' uniform were the same as my feelings about Favre in a Vikings uniform (HOFer or not.) WHY?
      Yeah but the difference is all those other 30+ year old guys are on their way out, not on their way in.
      Could Collabello have a role on a rebuilding/rebuilt team? Well sure, I guess he COULD. The same way that Drew Butera COULD (and does!!). But that doesnt mean he SHOULD.
    1. diehardtwinsfan's Avatar
      diehardtwinsfan -
      Perhaps this isn't obvious, but not everyone adjusts to being a pinch hitter. Some do it naturally, others do not. I have no problems letting colabello play every day in Rochester. He's facing slightly tougher competition and is a phone call away. I woudln't be surprised in the least if he gets a cup of coffee in the near future.
    1. spideyo's Avatar
      spideyo -
      The wonderful thing about baseball, is you aren't doomed to go down hill once you hit 27. Yes, he's a bit older than average for where he is, but he's not exactly an old man. It's also not like he spent 10 years wasting away in A-ball. Who knows, maybe if he had ended up in someone's farm system at 21 and had pro coaches helping him develop instead of toiling away in independent league games for 8 years, he might have developed faster and been a legitimate product.

      Anyways, even though WBC and ST are small sample sizes, I think you can pretty legitimately argue that he would be the best Right handed bench bat we've had in many yeats
©2014 TwinsCentric, LLC. All Rights Reserved.
Interested in advertising with Twins Daily? Click here.