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  • Fishing for Holes in the Roster

    When a team has lost 90 games in three consecutive seasons, there can be plenty of finger pointing. For the Twins, there are questions to ask about how this current roster was created and what the team can do as they try to move forward.

    Where are the holes in this roster? What needs to be done this offseason? Are there internal options to help remedy the situation? These questions and more need to be answered before the team heads to Florida for spring training.

    Let's take a look at each position and try to figure out how the Twins can get out of this mess. A fishing bobber ranking will accompany each position. One bobber means the position needs to be addressed, two bobbers means the position is steady, and three bobbers means the position is looking good going forward.

    Catcher
    2013 Starter: Joe Mauer
    Other Options: Ryan Doumit, Josmil Pinto, Chris Herrmann
    There are questions about Mauer moving forward from his concussion-related issues. Doumit suffered some concussion issues of his own. At the end of the season, Pinto looked great but can he sustain this kind of production at the big league level? This should be a position for the Twins not to worry about but Mauer's concussion issues bring down this ranking. Ranking: One Bobber

    First Base
    2013 Starter: Justin Morneau (Out of the Organization)
    Other Options: Joe Mauer, Chris Colabello, Chris Parmelee
    Mauer's head troubles could mean a change of position and first base might be his new home by the beginning of next season. Colabello and Parmelee have shown success at Triple-A but it hasn't translated to the big leagues. This could be a spot where the team looks outside the organization for help since there are three left-handed bats and plenty of question marks. Ranking: One Bobber

    Second Base
    2013 Starter: Brian Dozier
    Other Options: Eduardo Escobar, Eddie Rosario
    In a breakout season, Dozier made Twins fans forget his disastrous rookie campaign. He seems to have locked up second base going into next season but Rosario is close to knocking on the door. Rochester will be Rosario's home to start 2014 but a stumble from Dozier could mean Rosario's rise to the big leagues. This position battle will be one to watch moving forward. Ranking: Three Bobbers

    Third Base
    2013 Starter: Trevor Plouffe
    Other Options: Miguel Sano, Deibinson Romero
    Plouffe struggled for most of 2013 but ended the year with a strong month of September. The Twins are going to want to see Sano at the big league level sometime in 2014. After Hicks' terrible 2013 season, the club will probably take it slow with Sano. A hot start in Triple-A from Sano could mean the end of Plouffe's tenure at third base. Ranking: Three Bobbers

    Shortstop
    2013 Starter: Pedro Florimon
    Other Options: Danny Santana, Eduardo Escobar
    Last season, Florimon showed his defensive prowess but his offense continues to be offensive. In the minor leagues, Santana continues to hit but there are giant question marks about his defense. Florimon is the likely starter but Santana's offensive ability is something to watch. Overall, shortstop is a tough spot in the higher levels of the organization. Ranking: One Bobber

    Left Field
    2013 Starter: Josh Willingham
    Other Options: Oswaldo Arcia, Trevor Plouffe
    Willingham followed his tremendous 2012 season with an injury-filled 2013. Arcia had some up and down moments in his rookie year but he still showed the power stroke he had been known for in the minors. As the team looks to the future, it might make sense for Willingham spend more time at DH. Plouffe could see more time in the outfield when Sano arrives. Ranking: Two Bobbers

    Center Field
    2013 Starter: Aaron Hicks
    Other Options: Byron Buxton, Alex Presley
    When the Twins handed the starting center field job to Hicks last year, they hoped the young man would take the position and run. Luckily for Twins fans, Buxton burst onto the scene in 2013. It could still be a couple years before Buxton makes it to the big leagues and this would leave a hole in center field. The future looks bright with Buxton but there are still questions about what Hicks will be able to do in 2014. Ranking: Two Bobbers

    Right Field
    2013 Starter: Chris Parmelee
    Other Options: Aaron Hicks, Darin Mastroianni
    The Twins could be searching for options at this position moving forward. Parmelee and Hicks had disappointing seasons and Mastroianni was hurt for most of the year. Arcia could see some time at this spot if the Twins continue to use Willingham defensively. If Hicks can fix his offensive woes, this could be his spot when Buxton arrives on the scene. Ranking: One Bobber

    What kind of bobber rankings would you give the Twins position players? Leave a COMMENT and start the discussion.
    This article was originally published in blog: Fishing for Holes in the Roster started by Cody Christie
    Comments 22 Comments
    1. Paul Pleiss's Avatar
      Paul Pleiss -
      I forgot Arcia. What was I thinking. He fits at both corner spots, probably the everyday RF unless he's over in LF spelling Hammer
    1. Twins33's Avatar
      Twins33 -
      Quote Originally Posted by Paul Pleiss View Post
      Guys, Joe Mauer is not going to become the everyday 1B. Moving him to 1B doesn't remove the concussion problem. I'm remembering a guy named Morneau who had concussion problems, where did he play again?
      The difference is that Morneau didn't get his by playing 1B. He got his sliding into 2nd. The symptoms came back by diving for a ball at a later time, but the first concussion that year was one that could happen to anyone.

      Mauer got his playing his position. He takes tipped baseballs off the head a lot more than he used to. Now you're saying, let's just put him back down there to take more tipped baseballs off the head. Maybe he will be fine, but maybe he won't.

      I honestly don't know how I feel about where he should play, but the two concussions were caused in two completely different ways and shouldn't be compared. It's not like Morneau is playing 1B and is constantly hit in the face by line drives...

      Moving Mauer would lessen the possibility as he no longer would be hit in the head a couple of times a game. If you leave him at C, than there is a 100% chance that he will get hit in the head. It's just part of being a catcher.
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