Monday, March 28, 2005

How Many Catchers Does This Team Need?

The Twins cut four lefthanded hitters on Sunday--Eric Munson, Armando Rios, Andy Fox, and Michael Ryan--which has the beat writers penciling in Terry Tiffee as the likely bet to fill the last opening on the bench. Never one to suffer a dull moment, however, Gardenhire is spinning tales to Joe Christensen at the Strib about how he might like to keep Corky Miller as a fourth Catcher on the roster, out of concern for Joe Mauer's knee. Now, I ask, is this something to be taken seriously, or is it just Gardy's idea of a joke?

Who can tell with that guy? If he kept Miller on the team to start the season, presumably he would have a bench of Mike Redmond, Matt LeCroy, Corky Miller, Nick Punto, and Juan Castro. Tiffee would go to AAA, Michael Restovich would be cut or traded, and the manager would be left with just one decent bat and no true outfielders amongst his reserves. It seems outrageously ridiculous, and yet I could imagine Gardy doing it anyway out of fear of what might happen if Mauer's knee were sore and Redmond got hurt... and what if LeCroy were the DH or already had pinch-hit that day? (Gasp!) He might have to use pinch-hitters to bat for his pitchers once or twice in the game! That sort of nightmare keeps him up nights. He's admitted it before. It's silly, but I suppose all sorts of fantastic scenarios might trouble a man when it's his neck on the line and things may start to go wrong. We all might be chewing on Tums while flipping between infomercials, Daria reruns, and Cheap Seats at 3 am, wondering if Johan could bat and play RF in a pinch, if we were in his shoes.

But here's the thing, Gardy. You can't float ideas like that to the press but also get huffy when people continue to speculate on when Joe Mauer will have to move to 3rd base. On the one hand, you say he's just fine and there is no contingency plan to move him. On the other, you're talking about carrying a fourth string catcher because you're still so concerned about Mauer's knee, nearly a year after he first injured it. Which story do you want people to believe?

2 Comments:

At 3/30/2005 12:53 AM, Blogger Leslie Monteiro said...

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At 3/30/2005 1:00 AM, Blogger Leslie Monteiro said...

I don't think Gardenhire is being funny. I think he is serious and rightfully so. I am not sure if Joe's knee can hold up as a catcher. That has to concern you. I know I am. Heck I am worried that Joe is injury-prone and that his injuries could force him to retire in a few years.

My guess is when all is said and done, Joe will be a DH and Mike Redmond will be the starting catcher as this season evolves. Corky would be the backup to Mike hence why the Twins want 4 catchers. Lecroy is the emergency catcher, but it has to be real bad for him to catch.

As for the other roster moves, I was shocked to see Eric Munson and Andy Fox get cut. I know Munson stinks,but he could be a good guy coming out of the bench and get some big hits. I am glad Tiffee made it since he will help, but I would like to see both Munson and Tiffee. I was shocked to see Fox get cut. Fox is a guy who can be a valuable reserve for any team. I thought Fox was huge for the Marlins couple of yeras ago and Rangers last year. He could have helped the Twins IMO.

I am not sad about Michael Ryan gone. He was awful as a hitter and his performance against the Yankees in the playoffs was embrassing.

I wish Luis Rivas and Juan Castro was gone too. They both stink. Rivas is doing so bad in Spring Training and Castro is worthless. It's bad enough that Castro can't hit, but he can't field either. Terry Ryan and his staff hasn't made mistakes in recent years, but to pay 2 million for a stiff is not the way to go.

 

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