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Thrylos

Speculation on the Twins' first Spring Training cuts and updated battle dashboards

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Originally published at The Tenth Inning Stretch
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Like most teams the Minnesota Twins will be announcing the first cuts of the major league Spring Training camp very soon. Who will those players be?

One group of players who gets cut first are players on the 40-man roster who do not have much likelihood to make the team and were added on the roster for protection's sake. I think that Logan Darnell, Max Kepler, Jorge Polanco and Kennys Vargas will be the four casualties from this category. I think that Trevor May is on the bubble and might be in the first cuts list as well, because he has been pitching primarily in relief (and not that great) and will need to be stretched as a starter and it might be good timing with the minor league games starting the coming Monday. Edgar Ibarra, who has yet to play because of Hepatitis B, is another serious candidate to go to the minor league camp to recuperate.

I think that the Twins will want to have a longer look on Danny Santana, Kris Johnson (they are performing really well and with Pedro Florimon yet to play because of his apendectomy and the fifth starter job wide open, there might be real opportunities). I also suspect that the Twins would want a longer look on Brooks Raley because he just has not been around much and they might need to make a decision on his 40-man roster spot.

There is not much pressure to cut non-roster invitees (because they do not have to be in the Major League DL, receive ML pay and have their clocks ticking, if there is an injury during camp,) but I suspect that some will be cut as well. Sean Gilmartin would be a good candidate from this group because of the opportunity to get stretched in Minor League games. Also with the reduction in pitchers, the Twins are likely to demote a catcher or two, because they do not need them, with Stuart Turner and Matt Koch being the most likely. Even though Jason Kubel and Jason Bartlett are having a hard time hitting the ball, I suspect that the Twins will give them every opportunity to succeed in Spring Training. This might not be the case for Chris Rahl who sees fellow non-roster outfielder invitees Jermaine Mitchell, Darin Mastroianni and Wilkin Ramirez performing better than him.

Here are the latest battle dashboards updated for today's game (and you can find all of the 2014 Spring Training dashboards here) :

A reminder of the scoring system:


For the pitchers, I quantify using a measurement created by Bill James more than a decade ago called "Game Score". It is calculated as follows:
You start with 50 points for each pitcher.
Add 1 point for each out.
Add 1 point for each strikeout.
Subtract 2 points for each hit.
Subtract 4 points for each earned run.
Subtract 2 points for each unearned run.
Subtract 1 point for each walk.
There is a point bonus for pitching more than 4 innings as well, adding 2 points for each IP after the 4th, but this is not too applicable here.

Game Scored of 49-51 are "average" (yellow),
everything higher than 51 "above average" (green),
and everything below 49 "below average" (red).

For position players, I devised a similar metric that goes like this:
Start with 0 points (unlike the pitching Game Score that starts with 50)
Add 1 point for each Run, RBI, 2B, SB, BB, and HBP recorded.
Add 2.5 for each hit, 3 for each 3B and 4 for each HR.
Subtract 1 for each CS and GIDP,
subtract 1 for each error,
for catchers add 1 for each CS
Subtract 0.2 for each SO and 0.5 for each AB.

Again, as in the Pitching Battle Dashboard, the Position Player Battle Dashboard is color-coded based on average, above average and below average performances, where:

Average is Batting Game Score between 0 and 2
Above average is Batting Game Score higher than 2
Below average is Batting Game Score less than 0

Players on the 40-man roster are in bold. The ones without options are also underlined. Lefty pitchers are in italics.

Here is the Dashboard for the Twins' position players:
And for the Twins' pitchers:

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Comments

  1. J-Dog Dungan's Avatar
    Does anybody know the chances that Michael Tonkin breaks camp this year? Seems like he's got a gun for an arm and he isn't afraid to use it!
  2. Thrylos's Avatar
    I think that he will be ahead of at least Pressly who has options and no longer has to be on the MLB roster not to be lost. His chances are very good.
  3. Hosken Bombo Disco's Avatar
    I love the Bill James dashboard.

    Interesting that the two worst performing position players are Bartlett and Kubel.

    Phil Miller has a short article on Kubel tonight (3/9). It would seem Kubel's already made the 25-man cut. No one seems to really have any concern. Apparently none of them have seen Parker's heat charts. (it's still early, I could be wrong, Kubel could mash, etc)

    In the article, Gardenhire says he plans to use Kubel as DH and PH this year. Anyway, for better or worse, it's one less question mark going into the season.
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