Taylor's Twins Talk

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

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Baker Gets the Call

As I predicted on Monday, the Twins decided that pitching was more important right now than an extra position player, calling up Scott Baker from AAA Rochester. Baker will be slotted into the fifth spot in the rotation, but if Carlos Silva gets bad news today and needs to go on the disabled list, there is a very good chance that Boof Bonser will be recalled as well.

A couple of thoughts: First, this makes the most sense for the Twins. Calling up Chris Heintz, or Josh Rabe, or Jason Tyner, or Shawn Wooten (and so on) wouldn't have done much for the team. Oh, sure, Heintz would have given them the third catcher that Gardenhire was lobbying for earlier this season. But he never would have played, and when in 10 days Rondell White was ready to come back to the team (something I'm still hoping is avoided), Heintz would have been sent right back down. By calling up Baker, the Twins end the speculation on who the fifth starter is, protect themselves against the potential Silva injury, and eliminate the need for dueling transactions later (to call up another starter and to make room for Rondell).

Second, this probably indicates that the Twins never had any intention of returning Kyle Lohse to the rotation. Baker and Bonser were competing for the spot, the Twins essentially having already moved on from the Kyle Lohse era. This pleases me, since I was a little worried about Terry Ryan and his run of not-great decisions. The first thing that inspired my confidence this year was his refusal to call up Shawn Wooten. This decision reinforces the fact that the Tony Batista/Rondell White/Ruben Sierra signings were part of a bad plan, and not indicative in an overall decline in his abilities as a GM (as if the guy who pull off the Pierzynski for Nathan/Liriano/Bonser deal could somehow become a bad GM!). This, incidentally, does not mean that Lohse won't get back into the rotation: now that the Twins are potentially dealing with an injury to Silva, I think there's an even shot that Lohse would get that spot if Silva went on the DL instead of Bonser. Time will tell.


  • At Thu Jul 13, 09:57:00 AM , Blogger Marty said...

    I disagree when you say "as if the guy who pull off the Pierzynski for Nathan/Liriano/Bonser deal could somehow become a bad GM." Even the most profoundly retarded person could figure out that was a goodtrade, just like how most profoundly retarded people know when you trade cat poo for real candy that that's a good deal. It takes a long time of searching to find someone stupid enough to not recognize a deal that good.

  • At Thu Jul 13, 10:15:00 AM , Blogger JST said...

    Let's give Terry a little bit of credit. Nathan had been a solid setup-type reliever, but he had only pitched in more than 20 games more than once (that would be the 2003 season), and before 2003 he hadn't been a great pitcher. Nathan was the major league part of the deal, but he wasn't enough straight up for A.J.

    The result? Ryan was able to somehow convince Brian Sabean, a very good GM, to throw in two more pieces. Liriano was the clincher, I'm sure, but he had had some injury problems and was probably seen as a bit of a risk. Looking at the deal now, it looks obvious that this was stupid on the Giants part. But Brian Sabean isn't a stupid man, and he didn't realize how stupid it was.

    In other words, you don't give Ryan enough credit for this deal, but I will admit that I was a bit too deferential. The comment was a little bit tongue-in-cheek, but I'm not willing to say that TR is a bad GM. I just think he had a bad plan this year, and it's being addressed as we move along. So...let's see how he handles the trade deadline this year, and the coming off-season.


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