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  • Minnesota Twins Roster Projection 4.0

    With Vance Worley outrighted and Kyle Gibson seemingly in line to claim the fifth spot in the rotation, the Minnesota Twins' roster is beginning to come into focus.

    Based on recent developments, rumblings around camp and general deduction, here's a final stab at projecting the 25 men who will head north in a week when the Twins head to Chicago to open their 2014 season.

    As always, names in red are the players who should be considered locks (barring injury) while the names in black are less certain.

    Catchers (3): Kurt Suzuki, Josmil Pinto, Chris Herrmann

    I'm not sure this is how it's going to come together, but it is looking like Pinto will make the roster because the Twins need his bat. If Ron Gardenhire elects to plug Pinto in at DH frequently against lefties -- which I think is a good idea -- he'll probably want Hermmann on the roster. Herrmann also provides additional outfield depth, and has performed well this spring.

    Infielders (5): Joe Mauer, Brian Dozier, Trevor Plouffe, Pedro Florimon, Eduardo Escobar

    I think Gardenhire would like to have Chris Colabello on the team, but it's going to be tough to fit him along with a third catcher. That might ultimately be one of the tougher choices the manager has to make.

    As for Jason Bartlett, it's clear that Gardy wants to keep him but I can't see any way to rationalize a no-hit utility man on the roster in addition to the backup infielder Escobar.

    Outfielders (5): Josh Willingham, Aaron Hicks, Oswaldo Arcia, Jason Kubel, Alex Presley

    Chris Parmelee is the victim of a roster squeeze, and could be lost because he's out of options. It simply doesn't make sense to carry both Kubel and Parmelee, and all indications are that Kubel is in.

    Starting Pitchers (5): Ricky Nolasco, Phil Hughes, Kevin Correia, Mike Pelfrey, Kyle Gibson

    Samuel Deduno is headed to the bullpen, and the final spot in the rotation will go to either Gibson or Scott Diamond. Several signs are pointing to Gibson as the winner in that competition, although the club might not make an official decision until after both hurlers make their final spring appearances on Tuesday.

    Bullpen (7): Glen Perkins, Jared Burton, Casey Fien, Brian Duensing, Anthony Swarzak, Samuel Deduno, Scott Diamond

    It sounds like Deduno is basically a lock to head to the bullpen, and he'll take on a middle reliever role while Swarzak slides into the later innings. The Twins don't want to risk losing Diamond for nothing, so if he's not the starter they'll probably keep him as a long reliever unless they can swing a trade. Assistant general manager Rob Antony noted on Friday that he doesn't see Diamond as a situational reliever because he isn't especially good against lefties.

    Michael Tonkin and Caleb Thielbar are the unlucky victims of circumstance here. Both are good enough, and have pitched well enough this spring, to be viewed as bullpen fixtures, but the Twins don't lose risking them by sending them to Triple-A. It will be nice to have these kind of reinforcements available in Rochester.
    Comments 104 Comments
    1. ppearson50's Avatar
      ppearson50 -
      Morales supposedly turned down both a one year and a multi year offer from Seattle but they are probably trying to lowball him. It seems like both Drew and Morales have just about no interest in them at all right now. What a weird situation for two guys who both turned down $14 million one year deals months ago. I'm sure having Boras as your agent makes life interesting.
    1. ppearson50's Avatar
      ppearson50 -
      I think the pitching will be better but it looks like to me the offense will be worse, possibly a lot worse.
    1. jokin's Avatar
      jokin -
      Quote Originally Posted by gbg View Post
      Nick - who is your backup first baseman in this arrangement? Hopefully won't need one often, but the only one has played a single inning at the position, minors or majors, except Mauer, is Willingham, who has a total of four innings there, none since 2009.
      Although Hermann has taken some reps at 1B this spring, Trevor Plouffe will be the likely backup First Baseman in this Hermann-makes-it scenario. He played there in 2011 at Roc. and has played at 1B with the Twins in games last year, 2012, and 2011.
    1. jorgenswest's Avatar
      jorgenswest -
      I am not certain Presley is a lock. Escobar and Parmelee played in CF the last two days. Presley offers below average defense in center. It would be upgrade over a Escobar, but will it be worth a spot on the bench?

      He would be on my bench, but I would be watching the waiver wire.

      I think Parmelee or Colabello make the roster. It could be for a catcher or possibly Kubel. They should cut ties with Kubel. It is so easy to think that signing a guy like Kubel to a minor league contract has no downside. The downside is when he takes the roster spot or playing time from developing younger players.
    1. ppearson50's Avatar
      ppearson50 -
      It just scares me when we are talking about a bench of Presley, Hermann, Escobar and Pinto, with Pinto being the only one with a decent statline the last two years. I would hate to see Colabello not make it because of three catchers.
    1. Dantes929's Avatar
      Dantes929 -
      Quote Originally Posted by jorgenswest View Post
      I think Parmelee or Colabello make the roster. It could be for a catcher or possibly Kubel. They should cut ties with Kubel. It is so easy to think that signing a guy like Kubel to a minor league contract has no downside. The downside is when he takes the roster spot or playing time from developing younger players.
      That is a great point. I also hate the phrase proven anything. It can be proven that Kubel was a worthwhile player at some point in the past but it can also be proven that he hit .216 last year. I was not opposed to signing Kubel and there should be no downside. Send him to the minors and let him "prove" there that he belongs. I believe it has already been established that he is willing to do that.
    1. diehardtwinsfan's Avatar
      diehardtwinsfan -
      Quote Originally Posted by TheLeviathan View Post
      I'll be sad if we have to cut ties with Parmelee.
      I was thinking this too. If Parm is not on the roster and Bartlet, Kubel, or Herrman (as the 3rd C)are, there's something seriously wrong here.
    1. jokin's Avatar
      jokin -
      Quote Originally Posted by Dantes929 View Post
      That is a great point. I also hate the phrase proven anything. It can be proven that Kubel was a worthwhile player at some point in the past but it can also be proven that he hit .216 last year. I was not opposed to signing Kubel and there should be no downside. Send him to the minors and let him "prove" there that he belongs. I believe it has already been established that he is willing to do that.
      I guess it depends on what your read, but everything I've read has indicated that Kubel turned down major league offers to sign with the Twins. I haven't found a Twins beat writer yet who isn't operating on the presumption that Kubel is on the opening day roster.

      On a realated note, we have been having discussions on other threads noting that Arcia has looked bad in the OF and has a 33% K rate this spring. Might he be the one ticketed to Rochester for more seasoning and awaiting the next roster opening?
    1. Thrylos's Avatar
      Thrylos -
      Quote Originally Posted by jorgenswest View Post
      I am not certain Presley is a lock. Escobar and Parmelee played in CF the last two days. .
      I would love to see a Willingham, Parmelee and Arcia or Kubel Outfield. I bet so would the Twins' pitchers...
    1. boomerb5's Avatar
      boomerb5 -
      Kubel and Bartlett *might* have something left in the tank. maybe.
      But this team is not competing, so it makes ZERO sense to still have either of them even in a position to possibly claim a roster slot. Colabello and Parmelee both have far more potential than Kubes. I thought scholarships were a thing of the past.
    1. bdoom5's Avatar
      bdoom5 -
      I hate to say it fellas, cuz I love the Twins, but I see us losing a lot of games. Im guessing a lot of 5-1 or 6-2 games. We aren't going to score a lot of runs. Hurry up and heal Sano!
    1. bdoom5's Avatar
      bdoom5 -
      Quote Originally Posted by boomerb5 View Post
      Kubel and Bartlett *might* have something left in the tank. maybe.
      But this team is not competing, so it makes ZERO sense to still have either of them even in a position to possibly claim a roster slot. Colabello and Parmelee both have far more potential than Kubes. I thought scholarships were a thing of the past.
      Not in the Twins clubhouse. We need youth. Youth equals excitement. This roster is stale! I wish I could be more positive, but hard to do. Im a realist. Half of our players wouldn't start for 97% of other clubs.
    1. SydneyTwinsFan's Avatar
      SydneyTwinsFan -
      Hermann is just a head scratcher. Escobar can be an emergency C for a couple of innings - that's part of what he brings to the Util role.

      There needs to be a competent back up for Mauer at 1B (if he is going to spelled here and there at DH or the odd day off). The bench also needs a late innings PH threat off the bench. Ideally you combine those two roles, and handily the Twins a few options in that regard. Sadly one of them is not Hermann. Parmalee or Colabello both work here - choose your poison, I don't have a strong view either way - but for God's sake don't sacrifice the overall versatility of the team/bench because your blinded by the apparent versatility of one bits and pieces player who doesn't (yet) bring any upgrade in skills to the roster.
    1. LaBombo's Avatar
      LaBombo -
      If a roster with 3 catchers, a lineup 4 or more days a week with Suzuki batting second, and another 90-loss season isn't enough to get Gardenhire fired, then the organization is doomed to fail until there's a complete front office purge.
    1. LaBombo's Avatar
      LaBombo -
      Oh, and If they really go with 3 catchers all season and the over/under on the total number of times this year that Willingham and Kubel have a catcher pinch run for them is set at 10, I'm putting 20 on the over.
    1. Hosken Bombo Disco's Avatar
      Hosken Bombo Disco -
      I'd rather have Thielbar and cut ties with either Duensing or Diamond (or both and add Tonkin).
    1. pierre75275's Avatar
      pierre75275 -
      I am okay with the bullpen Nick has listed. I would rather have Thiebar then Diamond, but I would rather have Deduno then Tonkin. If Diamond is horrific in the pen then send him down and if he doesnt clear waivers then oh well, so be it, and bring up Thiebar. If a start is injured/falters, put in Deduno and call up Tonkin. I would rather see Colobello then Kubel, nostalgia aside. Kubel is on a minor league deal so he can be optioned. I would like to keep Parmalee if possible but but then but I think that makes the roster weaker not in just his spot but a couple other spots as well.
    1. jorgenswest's Avatar
      jorgenswest -
      Quote Originally Posted by Thrylos View Post
      I would love to see a Willingham, Parmelee and Arcia or Kubel Outfield. I bet so would the Twins' pitchers...
      I don't want to see it either, but I am not sure Presley is a lock.
    1. jokin's Avatar
      jokin -
      Quote Originally Posted by LaBombo View Post
      Oh, and If they really go with 3 catchers all season and the over/under on the total number of times this year that Willingham and Kubel have a catcher pinch run for them is set at 10, I'm putting 20 on the over.
      Can you put me down for the "versatile" Chris Hermann getting 19 of those 20?
    1. twinstalker's Avatar
      twinstalker -
      First, Kubel did not turn down a major league offer to sign a minor league offer with the Twins. Show me one player who has done that, and I'll show the most absolute exception to the rule to ever exist.

      Second, when the Twins signed Kubel, I think I was the only one screaming then. What's happening now (if it does) was totally predictable. Kubel could do nothing but hurt the Twins. We'll have to see whether the management is simply the worst ever or merely just horrible.

      Enough hyperbole for everyone? :-)
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