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  • Valencia Optioned to Rochester (More Moves, Maloney, Mastroianni, Walters)

    Immediately following the Twins loss tonight against the Angels, the team announced that they had optioned 3B Danny Valencia and Designated LHP Matt Maloney for Assignment. The selected the contract of RHP PJ Walters and OF/2B Darin Mastroianni.

    Valencia has really struggled with the bat and glove throughout the season, and yet the timing here is a little surprising. The hope would be that he is able to figure things out down in Rochester and come back and resume his role as the team's starting 3B.

    Maloney had a solid spring training, but really has struggled in the season's first five weeks.

    Mastroianni started the season by struggling for two weeks in New Britain (AA), but he has been hitting nearly .360 through three weeks with AAA Rochester, playing LF and some 2B. He has ten stolen bases with the Red Wings, including stealing home on Monday. He will likely be with the Twins in time to play his former organization, the Toronto Blue Jays.

    PJ Walters played for the Blue Jays and Cardinals last year and was part of the big July trade between the teams. He has posted a 3-1 record with a 2.70 ERA in AAA. He will start on Saturday against the Blue Jays. This also means that Francisco Liriano goes to the bullpen.

    So, the question I have is... who is the Twins starting 3B now? Carroll? Plouffe?

    What are your thoughts on the moves?

    This article was originally published in blog: Valencia Optioned to Rochester started by Seth Stohs
    Comments 41 Comments
    1. adjacent's Avatar
      adjacent -
      May be the change of hitting coach will help
    1. Rosterman's Avatar
      Rosterman -
      Where is Ben Revere.
    1. zchrz's Avatar
      zchrz -
      so now we have 3 catchers + 13 pitchers + 6 possible outfielders defiantly a well constructed roster.
    1. Mauer463's Avatar
      Mauer463 -
      With the current state of the rotation I think the Twins have just decided to scrap the 3B position altogether and put all hands on deck in the outfield.
    1. Jeremy Nygaard's Avatar
      Jeremy Nygaard -
      Who is the starting 3B?! I would assume Plouffe will get a crack at it. Carroll and Casilla will get their licks too, especially if Mastroianni gets any time at 2B. Interesting moves...
    1. peterb18's Avatar
      peterb18 -
      Good moves at this time! Valencia needs a change of scenery. He will always be a journeyman, at best. Swing is too long--can't handle, or is a sucker for the outside and low breaking ball. Similar to what Cuddyer would always fall for! Besides, Valencia will not be a part of the future with the infielders coming up in a few years.
    1. stringer bell's Avatar
      stringer bell -
      It occurs to me that Plouffe is an infielder again. It also occurs to me that the bottom half of the roster isn't important. I don't know what the official spin on Valencia's demotion will be, but the word "humbling" comes to me. Also "tuneup". Valencia could go either way--come back with a vengence or continue his slide from regular on a division winner to .....Triple A third baseman. I hope Maloney gets through to Rochester. I liked what I saw of him in spring training and I think he could be an effective starter, but he doesn't seem cut out for the bullpen.
    1. Nate Palmer's Avatar
      Nate Palmer -
      If anything it sends the message that players will begin to be held responsible for performance. Liriano needs to figure something out! I would think Carroll would be the 3B. Not to sure if Gardy wants to see Plouffe throwing across the diamond too much again this season.
    1. jorgenswest's Avatar
      jorgenswest -
      I don't think either Walters or Mastroianni will be with the team for the duration, but I can't disagree with moving Valencia or Maloney.

      Valencia does not help with the bat or glove and has little value on the bench. He lived off his mirage of a high babip his rookie season. This is his season to step it up or disappear. Still a chance he will get hot in AAA and get another chance. Most likely his best year in his career will have been his first.

      It is unlikely anyone will pick up Maloney. If the Twins retain him, I hope he goes into the Rochester rotation. Lefties will always get more shots and sometimes develop later as a result.

      Not sure how Mastroianni fits with Komatsu as an extra OF that are poor PH options. I don't know why they need two of them. Seems redundant though they did give Mastroianni did play 5 games at 2B. That doesn't make him a good option at 2B. Any chance the Twins will have a claim in for Blake DeWitt?

      I would guess Walters will be a long reliever. I don't see anything encouraging in his minor league numbers. I would have rather seen them look at Slama. Do they really need 13 pitchers?
    1. Bark's Lounge's Avatar
      Bark's Lounge -
      Well, I guess this is no surprise. Not too excited about Carroll and Casilla playing the hot corner. As far as Plouffe playing 3B, I'd have to see it to believe it. I hope they let him have a shot without a short leash. Overall this is a move that should have been made. Maloney for Walters is a wash. Maybe Walters will catch some lightning in a bottle.
    1. gunnarthor's Avatar
      gunnarthor -
      Seems like the right thing to do at the time. I think Casilla's arm should be good enough for third. Walters is sorta intriguing. Seems to have a decent krate at least. Maybe he can stick.
    1. darin617's Avatar
      darin617 -
      Quote Originally Posted by Nate Palmer View Post
      If anything it sends the message that players will begin to be held responsible for performance. Liriano needs to figure something out! I would think Carroll would be the 3B. Not to sure if Gardy wants to see Plouffe throwing across the diamond too much again this season.
      A little late to start holding players responsible for sucking. Not sure Gardy wants to stick around much longer...
    1. glanzer's Avatar
      glanzer -
      Well I got my wish. I haven't been liking what I've seen from Danny all season and was calling for his demotion long before his 0-for-whatever skid. If Danny was put in a situation to succeed and help the team, he inevitably failed, which tells me his problems are more mental than physical, trying too hard perhaps.

      Too bad for Maloney. A resurgence (or surgence?) from him would have been a feel-good story. Still never understood Bill Smith adding him to the 40-man roster right away in the winter.

      I'm a Gardy fan and am not interested in discussing him being fired, but what does this say about his roster construction out of spring training? How could he have been so wrong about so many of the players he hand-selected to head north with the team?
    1. USAFChief's Avatar
      USAFChief -
      At long last...Mauer to 3b!

      I wish.
    1. striker_86's Avatar
      striker_86 -
      Bout time! Put Carroll at 3rd. Well see how this new pitcher does on Saturday.
    1. stringer bell's Avatar
      stringer bell -
      Gotta believe that Carroll plays third every time before Casilla goes over there. I would think Plouffe plays third before they would use Casilla. Carroll has played over 200 games at 3B, Casilla has played 19 innings (1 start).
    1. jimbo92107's Avatar
      jimbo92107 -
      Feels like the team is not so slowly disintegrating.

    1. deanlambrecht's Avatar
      deanlambrecht -
      Atteberry was reporting on the postgame radio broadcast that Walters was up for Liriano to go to the bullpen. Maybe that's already common knowledge, but it's the first I've heard of it. Anyone?

      Edit to add: LEN3 reporting it at Strib: http://www.startribune.com/sports/tw...150885045.html
    1. Snortwood's Avatar
      Snortwood -
      Quote Originally Posted by USAFChief View Post
      At long last...Mauer to 3b!

      I wish.
      See Joe's throw into Albert's backside this evening? He's got a soft glove, and good footwork, and a great arm. Just - he needs to work on the angles out in the field some. Give him time and he could be an excellent third baseman. But - does that mean we're stuck with Drew & Doumit behind the plate for the duration? One can hit but hasn't got a position on a team with a $20M DH, and the other one can't hit the gaps more than a few times per year.

      However - to the point: Valencia was a mess behind the plate and, if he wasn't willing to do whatever was required to fix the problem, well, if this team needs to make an example of somebody, nothing wrong with choosing a guy who isn't contributing at the moment but at least has a chance to right the ship in the minors.
    1. J-Dog Dungan's Avatar
      J-Dog Dungan -
      This is interesting...what are the chances that Maloney is claimed by another team? And I think that Carroll will be moved to 3b. As I am from Eden Prairie, I am interested in how long it will be before the Twins call up EP native Cole DeVries, because I think that he is the 3rd pitcher down in AAA behind Diamond and Walters.
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