Taylor's Twins Talk

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

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Farewell, Real Deal

The Twins have reportedly waived J.D. Durbin, and Arizona has claimed him. This marks the second time this off-season that the Twins lost a player to a Diamondbacks waiver claim (the last being OF Alex Romero in January). Durbin's departure indicates that the Twins will be carrying just 11 pitchers on the roster at the start of the season, and opens the door for either Chris Heintz (75%) or Josh Rabe (25%) to make the roster.

First things first: anyone who was screaming about Mike Venafro being cut to make room for Durbin should apologize to Twins management. Venafro was cut because the Twins didn't want to keep 12 pitchers around, not because the Twins were planning on taking Durbin north. As much as I wanted Durbin to make the team, the Twins were clearly looking to go in another direction after it was clear that Durbin was going to struggle this spring. I can't even recall how many screeds I read suggesting how stupid management was for cutting Venafro and keeping Durbin -- this is why it's a good idea to pause before you yell.

Next, let me say that I'm sad to see Durbin go. He had (and has) tremendous potential, and I think he still could turn into a serviceable major league ballplayer someday, either as a middle relief guy or a back of the rotation starter. If his arm strength comes back fully, I could even see him becoming a setup guy, and maybe getting a chance to close. I understand why the Twins didn't exactly bend over backwards to keep him, though; there's so much talent in the system that Durbin just wasn't needed anymore. Good bye, J.D.

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  • At Thu Mar 29, 01:47:00 PM , Blogger Twins Territory said...

    The Twins were trying to get something out of him by trading him earlier this week. I guess teams knew that the Twins would have to send him throgh waivers.

    The D-Back are picking up everybody. They picked up a pretty good guy from the Rockies yesterday.

    I wish we could have somehow kept J.D. but I know it would have been hard.

  • At Thu Mar 29, 01:52:00 PM , Blogger Twins Territory said...

    Not sure if it was there right away, but Rabe was optioned to AAA.

  • At Thu Mar 29, 03:24:00 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

    Durbin will do fine; but he wasn't ready yet and I think we should have tried to trade him earlier on. I still believe Venafro should have been on the 25 man regardless of what happened to Durbin. First it was stated there needs to be another lefty in the pen and Choate, Cali, and Venafro were in competition for the spot. So finally Venafro delivered. Then is was Venafro and Durbin which seemed a little odd. Venafro is a lefty specialist. Durbin is a long reliever. They are two different positions. I just want the best pitchers on the team. I don't think anybody needs to apologize for stating Venafro should have made it. He will be there soon if Gardy has something up his sleeve as usual. Anyways....

    How about our batters?

  • At Thu Mar 29, 03:45:00 PM , Blogger JST said...

    Let me clarify my position suggesting that an apology is owed to Twins management regarding Venafro. I'm most definitely NOT saying that it's wrong to think Venafro got a raw deal -- he did everything he could have done to win a spot, and it's too bad that he was sent down, so feeling angry or frustrated about THAT is fine. Instead, I'm complaining about people who were yelling and screaming that Venafro got sent down in order to make room for Durbin, which was plainly not the case. It's clear now that the team knew for quite awhile that it wasn't going to keep Durbin around, and was instead trying to showcase him to set up a trade. I'm just frustrated by the level of anger I've seen over some roster moves that were fairly predictable, I guess.


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