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Thread: Bollinger: Herrmann Hopes to break camp as 3rd catcher

  1. #41
    The King In The North All-Star Nick Nelson's Avatar
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    The scholarships quote is not applicable in this situation. In the mind of Twins coaches, he is a good fit for the third catcher role. He plays excellent defense, he has a good rapport with the pitchers and nothing is hurt by his sporadic playing time. The problem with using anybody with any kind of upside in that role is that he'll have a hard time ever reaching that upside while getting a handful of at-bats per week. Any player with legitimate ability might object to the unglamorous nature of the role but Butera knows it's a miracle he has a major-league job so he keeps happily plugging away and working his ass off.

    Personally I wouldn't give a roster spot to a guy with as little offensive ability as Butera and I probably wouldn't even carry a third catcher (though with Mauer and Doumit leading the depth chart I can see the wisdom). But it's not the most indefensible thing I've ever seen. I'm really tired of seeing it constantly regurgitated as some proof positive that everyone running the Twins is an idiot. At the end of the day Butera has very little impact on the success of this team one way or another.

  2. #42
    Owner MVP Seth Stohs's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nick Nelson View Post
    The scholarships quote is not applicable in this situation. In the mind of Twins coaches, he is a good fit for the third catcher role. He plays excellent defense, he has a good rapport with the pitchers and nothing is hurt by his sporadic playing time. The problem with using anybody with any kind of upside in that role is that he'll have a hard time ever reaching that upside while getting a handful of at-bats per week. Any player with legitimate ability might object to the unglamorous nature of the role but Butera knows it's a miracle he has a major-league job so he keeps happily plugging away and working his ass off.

    Personally I wouldn't give a roster spot to a guy with as little offensive ability as Butera and I probably wouldn't even carry a third catcher (though with Mauer and Doumit leading the depth chart I can see the wisdom). But it's not the most indefensible thing I've ever seen. I'm really tired of seeing it constantly regurgitated as some proof positive that everyone running the Twins is an idiot. At the end of the day Butera has very little impact on the success of this team one way or another.
    Perfectly stated!

  3. #43
    Twins News Team All-Star TheLeviathan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by old nurse View Post
    There is just a little difference between being the starting centerfielder and third string catcher
    Um...that was the point. Is this some kind of bit?

  4. #44
    Twins News Team All-Star TheLeviathan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nick Nelson View Post
    The scholarships quote is not applicable in this situation. In the mind of Twins coaches, he is a good fit for the third catcher role.
    Right, so he's getting his spot regardless of how he plays. Isn't that precisely the point of the scholarship quote?

    He plays excellent defense, he has a good rapport with the pitchers and nothing is hurt by his sporadic playing time
    .

    This is such a poor argument. If having a quality player in the 25th roster spot isn't important - why do we have it? Why does every other team find a functional use for it? Why is the 24th spot more valuable? Why don't we line our bench with Butera, Tony Batista, the corpse for Rondell White, and a few others? It is so annoying to hear that it's ok to have bad players on the bench. It's not ok and it shouldn't be ok.


    Personally I wouldn't give a roster spot to a guy with as little offensive ability as Butera and I probably wouldn't even carry a third catcher (though with Mauer and Doumit leading the depth chart I can see the wisdom).
    This is precisely why it's a scholarship issue. If they want a third catcher so bad, sign Inge. He provides versatility, the same "gamer" qualities of Butera, and some offensive ability. The Twins are content and happy with Butera. That's the problem - they overlook his complete inability to be a functional baseball player because they are citing the same intangibles you are.

  5. #45
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    I want Butera gone because I'm tired to the incessant griping about him. You'd think his lack of production in 122 PA's last year was the reason for another awful season. I'm not defending his value as a player, but with all of the other problems on this team, I just can't get that worked up about a guy who plays so infrequently.

    For what it's worth, I get the sense that he is pretty well liked and respected by coaches and teammates. And though he can't hit, he seems like a fairly sharp guy who has a good understanding of the game. It wouldn't surprise me to see him go the coaching/managerial route one day and do well at it.

    Hmmmm......, maybe we need to keep him in the organization just in case that happens. Picture a scenario a dozen years from now where a Son of Sal managed Tigers or White Sox team was coming in here and beating the snot out of the Twins on a regular basis? That would not be good for the collective sanity of the Twins fan base.

  6. #46
    Owner MVP Brock Beauchamp's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nick Nelson View Post
    The scholarships quote is not applicable in this situation. In the mind of Twins coaches, he is a good fit for the third catcher role. He plays excellent defense, he has a good rapport with the pitchers and nothing is hurt by his sporadic playing time. The problem with using anybody with any kind of upside in that role is that he'll have a hard time ever reaching that upside while getting a handful of at-bats per week. Any player with legitimate ability might object to the unglamorous nature of the role but Butera knows it's a miracle he has a major-league job so he keeps happily plugging away and working his ass off.

    Personally I wouldn't give a roster spot to a guy with as little offensive ability as Butera and I probably wouldn't even carry a third catcher (though with Mauer and Doumit leading the depth chart I can see the wisdom). But it's not the most indefensible thing I've ever seen. I'm really tired of seeing it constantly regurgitated as some proof positive that everyone running the Twins is an idiot. At the end of the day Butera has very little impact on the success of this team one way or another.
    I come down hard on Butera but I also can't really argue with this post. Butera's ability to hurt the team with his anemic offense is extremely limited. I'd rather see the team carry two catchers than trot Butera out there once a week but given the state of the team, it's way down my list of priorities.

    I view the retention of Butera as something that is indicative of how this franchise is run and that's where my problem really lays... Not so much with Butera himself, though I often rage at the guy whenever I see that horrible, awful stat line. If the rest of the team was headed in the right direction (they picked up a decent starter, made ANY attempt to shore up the middle infield), I wouldn't care about Butera but in a world where the key free agent pickup was Correia, it just compounds the problem with the Minnesota roster in my eyes.

  7. #47
    Twins Moderator MVP USAFChief's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nick Nelson View Post
    The scholarships quote is not applicable in this situation. In the mind of Twins coaches, he is a good fit for the third catcher role. He plays excellent defense, he has a good rapport with the pitchers and nothing is hurt by his sporadic playing time. The problem with using anybody with any kind of upside in that role is that he'll have a hard time ever reaching that upside while getting a handful of at-bats per week. Any player with legitimate ability might object to the unglamorous nature of the role but Butera knows it's a miracle he has a major-league job so he keeps happily plugging away and working his ass off.

    Personally I wouldn't give a roster spot to a guy with as little offensive ability as Butera and I probably wouldn't even carry a third catcher (though with Mauer and Doumit leading the depth chart I can see the wisdom). But it's not the most indefensible thing I've ever seen. I'm really tired of seeing it constantly regurgitated as some proof positive that everyone running the Twins is an idiot. At the end of the day Butera has very little impact on the success of this team one way or another.
    Carrying Butera amounts to playing a major league season with a 24-man roster, with 12 or 13 of those spots already given to pitchers. Your post says as much. Why do the Twins do that to themselves? And why do people continually try to justify it? It's baffling. It costs the team games, both in terms of what Butera can't do when he IS in the lineup, and in terms of what they don't have available to them when Butera is what Gardy sees when he looks down the bench for a getaway day lineup or a short term injury replacement. Carrying Butera hurts the Twins. It's as simple as that, and it's self inflicted injury. THAT'S why people object to Drew Butera.

  8. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by USAFChief View Post
    Carrying Butera amounts to playing a major league season with a 24-man roster, with 12 or 13 of those spots already given to pitchers. Your post says as much. Why do the Twins do that to themselves? And why do people continually try to justify it? It's baffling. It costs the team games, both in terms of what Butera can't do when he IS in the lineup, and in terms of what they don't have available to them when Butera is what Gardy sees when he looks down the bench for a getaway day lineup or a short term injury replacement. Carrying Butera hurts the Twins. It's as simple as that, and it's self inflicted injury. THAT'S why people object to Drew Butera.
    I see the merit in both Nick's and Chief's arguments, although I really wonder about how many games the Butera "injury" costs us. This is at best a .500 team right now, and I can't get worked up about Drew Butera. Besides, I find him to be a likeable chap, especially in his golf duds.

    What works me up a bit is why our beat writers don't ask the hard questions. The Twins must disagree with you guys. Why don't we have a solid explanation about why they think Butera offers enough to offset his obvious offensive deficiencies?

  9. #49
    The King In The North All-Star Nick Nelson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheLeviathan
    Right, so he's getting his spot regardless of how he plays. Isn't that precisely the point of the scholarship quote?
    Wrong. If he stopped playing good defense and working well with pitchers, he wouldn't have a job. Your problem is that you equate "how he plays" strictly with offensive production, and clearly the Twins don't see it that way. They're looking for different things out of a third catcher. You can disagree with their evaluation in that sense but it doesn't mean he has a "scholarship."

    Quote Originally Posted by TheLeviathan
    This is such a poor argument. If having a quality player in the 25th roster spot isn't important - why do we have it? Why does every other team find a functional use for it? Why is the 24th spot more valuable? Why don't we line our bench with Butera, Tony Batista, the corpse for Rondell White, and a few others? It is so annoying to hear that it's ok to have bad players on the bench. It's not ok and it shouldn't be ok.
    Plenty of teams have a bad hitter occupying the last spot on their bench. Plenty of teams have managed to succeed despite this relatively minor hindrance. Hell, the Twins won 94 games and the division in 2010 with Butera soaking up 150 plate appearances.

    Quote Originally Posted by USAFChief View Post
    It costs the team games, both in terms of what Butera can't do when he IS in the lineup, and in terms of what they don't have available to them when Butera is what Gardy sees when he looks down the bench for a getaway day lineup or a short term injury replacement.
    Theoretically this is true but quite honestly I can't remember one instance last year where I said, "Man, if the Twins had a different crappy, end-of-the-bench player available instead of Butera they'd be way better off!" The decision to carry 13 pitchers bears as much responsibility for the Twins' bench inflexibility as the decision to carry Butera.

    I haven't even heard anyone suggest a credible replacement for Butera on the roster. Brandon Inge? Come on. Chris Herrmann? The same guy who hasn't played above Double-A in the minors and hasn't hit especially well there? Quite honestly this has to come to seem like complaining for the sake of complaining. I'm not really trying to defend Butera because I think he's pretty lousy and would prefer if he weren't on the roster, but it simply doesn't matter enough to justify the constant whining and the attempts to equate it to the organization's high-level problems.

  10. #50
    Senior Member All-Star Boom Boom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nick Nelson View Post
    Personally I wouldn't give a roster spot to a guy with as little offensive ability as Butera and I probably wouldn't even carry a third catcher (though with Mauer and Doumit leading the depth chart I can see the wisdom).
    I don't really see the wisdom in carrying the third catcher. Doumit's a nice offensive player but he doesn't need to be in the lineup every day. If the Twins could find a platoon partner for Doumit, and make it a point to never have both Doumit and Mauer in the lineup when one of them is the DH, the third catcher becomes a non-issue.

  11. #51
    Senior Member Triple-A Dilligaf69's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nick Nelson View Post
    The scholarships quote is not applicable in this situation. In the mind of Twins coaches, he is a good fit for the third catcher role. He plays excellent defense, he has a good rapport with the pitchers and nothing is hurt by his sporadic playing time. The problem with using anybody with any kind of upside in that role is that he'll have a hard time ever reaching that upside while getting a handful of at-bats per week. Any player with legitimate ability might object to the unglamorous nature of the role but Butera knows it's a miracle he has a major-league job so he keeps happily plugging away and working his ass off.

    Personally I wouldn't give a roster spot to a guy with as little offensive ability as Butera and I probably wouldn't even carry a third catcher (though with Mauer and Doumit leading the depth chart I can see the wisdom). But it's not the most indefensible thing I've ever seen. I'm really tired of seeing it constantly regurgitated as some proof positive that everyone running the Twins is an idiot. At the end of the day Butera has very little impact on the success of this team one way or another.



    Great post!


  12. #52
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    How can the Twins best use the 25th roster spot?

    The argument for a pinch hitter.

    The Twins will likely have three very poor bats in the line up in many games. Two of Florimon, Escobar and Dozier could be in the game. Mastroianni had large splits in the minors .831/.687 L/R OPS. It would be beneficial to have a left handed bat on the bench.

    The argument for the third catcher.

    Doumit is an awful defensive catcher. A DH/PH/emergency catcher role may fit his skills better. The lack of interest in him last winter might indicate there are several teams that would not give him a regular role as a catcher. The Twins need a real catcher backing up Mauer.

    So if you believe that the Twins need a back up catcher, who brings more value? Butera or Herrmann?

    Butera has more experience and is at least average defensively. He will never be used as a pinch hitter. Herrmann has more offensive skills and bats left handed. He is likely a better hitter against right handed pitching than Carroll, Escobar, Florimon, Dozier or Mastroianni. He would be useful as a pinch hitting option.

    Herrmann may do the better job of fitting both needs but possibly neither well enough. Based on catching only, Butera is the better option. If a bat on the bench is the need, there would be better options.

  13. #53
    Twins News Team All-Star TheLeviathan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nick Nelson View Post
    Your problem is that you equate "how he plays" strictly with offensive production,
    Wrong. I have repeatedly stated that his problems are on a critical component of the game (offense) never that he was a completely inept player at all phases. That is just a blatant mischaracterization.

    Butera's defense does not "complement" any other catcher. This isn't the outfield where the CF can complement a corner OF with bad range. Or a SS that complements a 3B with poor range to his left. When he plays - his historically awful offensive abilities hurts the team.

    Hell, the Twins won 94 games and the division in 2010 with Butera soaking up 150 plate appearances.
    And the 2006 Twins gave nearly 400 at bats to Rondell White and still had a strong team...what's your point? The problem with your arguments is that if you even take them and apply them to anyone but Butera they look ridiculous. (They look ridiculous with Butera, but somehow you're missing that)

    Butera is a symptom of the larger problems. The Twins are too focused on bizarre loyalties rather than actual talent. That, and this thread started talking about third catcher options. Seems odd for you to come in here complaining that people are complaining about Butera. Did you expect a thread about the "third catcher" was somehow not going to be a discussion of Butera?

    He's a bad player, he shouldn't be on the roster, and the Twins need to stop handing him a spot.

  14. #54
    The King In The North All-Star Nick Nelson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheLeviathan View Post
    Butera's defense does not "complement" any other catcher. This isn't the outfield where the CF can complement a corner OF with bad range. Or a SS that complements a 3B with poor range to his left. When he plays - his historically awful offensive abilities hurts the team.
    Except that he does complement certain pitchers on the staff, or at least the Twins and those pitchers believe that. Catcher is an awfully important defensive position that interacts with several others. Not sure why you're downplaying that with some convoluted point about range.

    Quote Originally Posted by TheLeviathan
    Did you expect a thread about the "third catcher" was somehow not going to be a discussion of Butera?

    He's a bad player, he shouldn't be on the roster, and the Twins need to stop handing him a spot.
    I'm fine with discussion of Butera. I'm just tired of seeing him repeatedly associated with the scholarships quote. It doesn't apply. Like it or not, the Twins believe he's earned the chance to be on the roster by doing what is expected of him.

  15. #55
    Twins News Team All-Star TheLeviathan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nick Nelson View Post
    Except that he does complement certain pitchers on the staff, or at least the Twins and those pitchers believe that. Catcher is an awfully important defensive position that interacts with several others. Not sure why you're downplaying that with some convoluted point about range.
    Because people, including you, say it's wise to keep Butera because he complements Mauer and Doumit's abilities. That isn't "complementing" them. It's a completely irrelevant point that sounds good, but means nothing. Doumit's offense doesn't help Butera's and vice-versa with defense. The only thing it allows you to do is pick which absent skillset you want to play that day. I don't call that an advantage.

    I'm fine with discussion of Butera. I'm just tired of seeing him repeatedly associated with the scholarships quote. It doesn't apply. Like it or not, the Twins believe he's earned the chance to be on the roster by doing what is expected of him.
    The very fact that they are insistent upon having a third catcher and brought in zero alternatives to compete with him, makes that quote perfectly reasonable to use here.

  16. #56
    Senior Member All-Star Thrylos's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by USAFChief View Post
    Carrying Butera amounts to playing a major league season with a 24-man roster, with 12 or 13 of those spots already given to pitchers. Your post says as much. Why do the Twins do that to themselves? And why do people continually try to justify it? It's baffling. It costs the team games, both in terms of what Butera can't do when he IS in the lineup, and in terms of what they don't have available to them when Butera is what Gardy sees when he looks down the bench for a getaway day lineup or a short term injury replacement. Carrying Butera hurts the Twins. It's as simple as that, and it's self inflicted injury. THAT'S why people object to Drew Butera.
    ^^^^^ This, which is also accentuated by the fact that the Twins regularly have an one-person plus Butera bench because they have so many injured guys day to day to week before they do anyting.
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  17. #57
    Twins Moderator MVP Riverbrian's Avatar
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    To me this is real simple. Butera is simply no longer necessary.

    In my opinion... We don't need a 3rd catcher... Period... If I could take one thing out of Gardy's head and toss it away... It would be his irrational fear of having to lose the DH spot for a game in the case of injury.

    However... Since Gardy has this fear... The Twins need a 3rd catcher.

    In my opinion... for that 3rd catcher role(that only the Twins need)... Butera is no longer necessary and here is why... We have Jeff Clement to play that role.

    Clement is most likely going nowhere so we don't have to worry about killing his development with no playing time but the thing that Clement has over Butera is that Clement can pinch hit for Florimon in the ninth when the team is down by a run because he has the ability to reach the seats. He can also fill in at 1B so that's an extra bonus. This is better economizing of the 25th spot on the roster.

    Clement has been a terrible hitter but he has been better than Drew. .648 Career OPS to Drew's .497.

    No doubt that Drew is the better defensive catcher and defense at the catcher position is very important in my mind.

    But... Defensive value is only valuable if he plays... He won't play enough for his defensive skill to truly help the team.

    That emergency catcher spot should go to someone who can park one and also strap on the pads in a pinch and only in a pinch. Defensive skill would be down on the list of priorities for that role in my opinion.

  18. #58
    Speediest Moderator All-Star snepp's Avatar
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    I don't think Clement can be considered a catcher anymore, can he?
    "Maybe you could go grab a bat and ball… and learn something. Maybe you will get it."
    - Strib commenter educating the elitists on the value of RBI's

  19. #59
    Twins Moderator MVP Riverbrian's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by snepp View Post
    I don't think Clement can be considered a catcher anymore, can he?
    I honestly don't know... But... The role is emergency catcher. If Doumit is DH and Mauer tweaks a hamstring. The third catcher can strap it on and finish the game. He wouldn't have too catch much or at all.

    Only the Twins seem to need this 3rd catcher... Might as well find someone who can pinch hit for Florimon when needed.

  20. #60
    Twins News Team All-Star TheLeviathan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Riverbrian View Post
    Only the Twins seem to need this 3rd catcher... Might as well find someone who can pinch hit for Florimon when needed.
    Exactly.

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