Taylor's Twins Talk

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

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Watkins to the DL

It looks as if Ron Gardenhire was right when he suggested that it didn't look good for Watkins following yesterday's game; the Twins have sent Watkins to the DL, replacing him on the roster by activating Brian Buscher from the DL.

While this move was not a surprise (there had been strong indications that Buscher would return as soon as he was eligible -- that didn't happen, since he could have come off yesterday, but a one day delay isn't shocking considering that, before Watkins injury, the Twins biggest concern was keeping arms in the bullpen who were ready to go), it is a frustrating setback for Watkins -- and his newfound fans.

Unfortunately, I can't help but thinking about another inspiring success story that was derailed by injury -- presumably for good. In 2005, the Twins called up Glenn Williams, a journeyman third baseman who, like Watkins, had spent forever and a day in the minors without a hint of a callup (he was in his 12th season in the minors, so he had Watkins beat out by a couple of years on that front). Also like Watkins, Williams had never shown much prowess with the bat prior to that season (he was hitting .303 in 175 AB's with Rochester when he was called up, but had never hit above .274 in any previous season, and was usually somewhere between .230 and .260). Then, amazingly, Williams got the call -- and he delivered. In 13 games (40 AB's) with the Twins, Williams picked up 17 hits, for a .425 average, hitting safely in every game in which he played. And then -- disaster struck in the form of a shoulder injury that kept him out for the rest of the year. Williams has been stuck in AAA since then, and is hitting just .230 this season after hitting .257 last year.

For Watkins' sake, and for the sake of his new fans, we should all hope that the parallels between these two players stop here. A quick recovery and a return to the big leagues in September would be a great start.

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