Monday, March 19, 2012


A bunch of the beat writers are saying "I wasn't surprised" that Nishioka was sent down, only by the timing. If that is true, I have to think the Twins have a viable plan B in place. One idea is that they are going to find a middle infielder outside the organization. But its hard to believe the Twins waited until Nishioka was sent out, if that was the plan B. Its possible they have been having talks with other teams and that the next shoe will drop soon.

Some people have suggested Brian Dozier would take the everyday shortstop spot with either Casilla or Carroll moving to the utility role. If that is a real possibility we will soon see those two trading positions on occasion.

Another possible scenario is that the Twins are willing to use Plouffe and Casilla as the backups at shortstop. That creates an opening for another bench player like Burroughs, Dinkelman or Hollimon.

Finally, there is what is probably the most likely scenario. Florimon or Chang are now competing for the utility spot. Florimon's skill at shortstop puts him a step ahead of Chang. But Chang has more experience.

Whatever happens, spring training has become a little more interesting.


Jim H said...

Sending Nishioka to the minors doesn't make that much sense. Assuming the Twins consider Dozier to be some sort of answer at SS, Nishioka is in the way at AAA unless Dozier does start in the majors. I wonder if the Twins will sell his contract to a Japanese team. Assuming they can, Nishioka is willing, and someone wants him.

I believe your speculation about the various backup possibilities is likely correct. Dozier will likely start in AAA unless he blows Gardy and Ryan away with his play over the next week or so. They must be fairly confident they that either Chang or Florimon will be an adequate backup.

Hollimon seems like a stretch. He was out of organized baseball 2 years ago and the Twins seemingly brought him in to fill a hole at AA. Although he played some SS, I have never gotten the impression that he is more than adequate defensively, anywhere. Although he has some power, he hasn't been able to hit for average.

Jim H said...

Ryan was on the radio during the Twins game today. Provus asked if Plouffe could be the backup SS. Ryan said no, he was an outfielder, backup 1B, and maybe an emergency SS. They didn't really ask anymore questions about the possible backup SS on air, though Gladden said Ryan had indicated he thought Dozier should be playing everyday.

Later Gladden said Casilla could be the backup SS although that seemed to be Gladden's idea not necessarily anyone else's.

MLB Twins Updates