One week from today, the Minnesota Twins will be in Chicago, ready to take on the White Sox on Opening Day. This Monday morning was a difficult one for many in the Twins clubhouse as another round of roster cuts sent ten players to minor league camp.
Matt Guerrier was given his unconditional release and is now a free agent. Chris Herrmann, Michael Tonkin, and Ryan Pressly were optioned. Meanwhile, Matt Hoffman, Aaron Thompson, Deolis Guerra, Deibinson Romero, Doug Bernier, and Wilkin Ramirez were reassigned to minor league camp.
The team is now down to 29 players in big league camp including three non-roster players (Dan Rohlfing, Jason Kubel and Jason Bartlett). Rohlfing is again around as an extra catcher until right before Opening Day, as he was a year ago. Jason Kubel appears to be a lock for the roster.
Meanwhile, Jason Bartlett remains in camp despite some rough offensive numbers. This, to me, isn't about him being the utility infielder. It would appear that Eduardo Escobar has that locked up. I can't help but wonder if the Twins might view him as a possible backup centerfielder, and if so, maybe Alex Presley's roster spot is not a given.
Although Michael Tonkin and Matt Hoffman each made a strong impression in Twins camp, both will begin the season in Rochester, ready to be promoted when necessary. Ryan Pressly, who had a nice showing in 2013 as a Rule 5 selection, was also sent to Rochester.
Chris Herrmann's demotion is a bit of a surprise. It signals that Josmil Pinto will make the team and that Ron Gardenhire will find a way to keep him in the lineup.
Who's Left? (29 players - 16 hitters and 13 pitchers)
Catchers - Kurt Suzuki, Josmil Pinto, Dan Rohlfing (NR)
Infielders - Joe Mauer, Brian Dozier, Pedro Florimon, Trevor Plouffe, Eduardo Escobar, Chris Colabello, Chris Parmelee, Jason Bartlett (NR)
Outfielders - Josh Willingham, Aaron Hicks, Alex Presley, Oswaldo Arcia, Jason Kubel (NR)
Pitchers - Ricky Nolasco, Phil Hughes, Kevin Correia, Mike Pelfrey, Kyle Gibson, Sam Deduno, Scott Diamond, Glen Perkins, Jared Burton, Brian Duensing, Casey Fien, Caleb Thielbar, Anthony Swarzak,