Taylor's Twins Talk

Focusing on the Twins, with a few ramblings on other things that catch my attention

Thursday, June 15, 2006

Castro Trade

Here's one place to read the official story.

There are ramifications to any trade, and this one has potentially some major ramifications, especially when coupled with the news that Shannon Stewart suffered a setback and now won't be back for at least 2 more weeks, presumably after a rehab stint that the Twins hope will begin after their road trip.

For one thing, it means that Nick Punto stock just went through the roof. Punto is now officially the backup shortstop and second baseman, not to mention the fact that he's started two games in a row at third base. The way he's been playing, that's not such a bad thing.

Next, it's good news for Terry Tiffee as well. I was suggesting that for the Twins to get Ruben Sierra and Shannon Stewart back on the roster, they would cut Rondell White and option Tiffee back to AAA. Now, there is only one move that needs to be made. If they don't cut White when Stewart comes back, I don't think they'll cut him at all. My assumption is that he will, in fact, be cut when Stewart returns.

I just mentioned Ruben Sierra; he just began a rehabilitation stint with the Red Wings, but it seems logical that he will just be brought up immediately. He gives the Twins an important veteran bat off the bench. It would stun me if someone else were brought up, since Sierra's rehab stint was only supposed to last for about another week. Maybe the Twins will consider calling up Pat Neshek, and making a decision on what pitcher to send down after Sierra completes the full rehab stint, but I doubt it.

It's also important to talk about whether this was a good trade for the Twins. They picked up OF Brandon Roberts from the Reds; Roberts is a speedy center fielder who is at the High A level. This is the second trade in a row where the Twins have traded away a proven Major League player for a low minor leaguer (the other being J.C. Romero for Alexi Casilla). While it is a trend that I would like to see discontinued, I can't blame Terry Ryan in this case. Castro wasn't exactly blowing up pitchers, and he wasn't going to become a starter anywhere. The best the Twins could have hoped to get back was a major leaguer of comparable skill, and frankly we didn't need that. Instead, Ryan took a chance with a young outfielder, something the Twins system lacks enough of. Castro would probably have been gone at the end of the season as a free agent anyway.

I give this trade a 6 out of 10; it creates roster space that the team needed, and signifies more clearly than anything yet that Jason Bartlett is being handed the job for the remainder of the season. Without knowing what we've received in return, I can't give it any higher than a 6, but I still consider that a good trade. Hopefully, after Roberts becomes an All-Star, I can look back at this trade and give it a 10.


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