With their minor league spring training opening this week, the Twins made their first cuts of the spring today:
Optioned RHP Deolis Guerra, RHP Loek Van Mil and INF Estarlin De Los Santos to New Britain (EL).
Reassigned LHP Jose Lugo, C Jair Fernandez, C Danny Rams, INF Steve Singleton and OF Rene Tosoni to their minor league camp.
For people unfamiliar with this process, the first three players are on the major league roster, so they have to optioned onto a minor league roster. The others are not, so they can simply be reassigned.
None of these players were really candidates to make the Twins this spring. The only surprise here was Rene Tosoni and it probably does not bode well for his future. I am not sure he was ever really a candidate to back up Span in center field, but his quick exit from the major league camp probably means he is not seen has having any role this year. Of course, that can change over the course of a season. The purpose of the minor leagues is to develop players and Tosoni is just arriving at AAA. So its not like he is a lost cause. Jose Lugo's early exit is also a bit of a surprise and an indication that he is going to be minor league roster filler, not major league depth.
Another big surprise was a couple players who did not get sent out. Ben Revere hasn't played above A ball and is expected to start the season at AA New Britain. That he was not part of the first round of cuts indicates Gardy wants to take a longer look at him against better competition. Of course it may be that, except for Span, he is the only true center fielder in camp. Chris Parmelee, another A ball player, is another surprise although Parmelee also played in the more advanced Arizona Fall League. It may be both of these guys are former first round draft choices that they just want to challenge. But its also possible they are closer to being ready than expected.
I suppose it is also a surprise that Toby Gardenhire is still hanging around. That demonstrates what being a jack of all trades, including a catcher, can do for you. It also helps to be the manager's son of course.