Taylor's Twins Talk

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

Monday, September 17, 2007

Punto to 2B full time?

I'll have more to say on this LaVelle Neal post tomorrow, but I wanted to at least get something up about it now. The article essentially says that Ron Gardenhire, through comments made tonight, virtually declared that Nick Punto is going to be the Twins starting 2B next season.

My immediate reactions:

1.) Nick Punto isn't as bad as he played this season -- really, this was a horrid, horrid season that should prove to be a statistical anomaly. Unfortunately, his strong 2006 was almost certainly just as anomalous.

2.) Alexi Casilla may or may not be ready to contribute full-time next year -- and if Punto returns to his statistical averages, he might be a better choice to start at 2B than Casilla would.

3.) Gardy wants to make finding a third-baseman a priority this off-season -- but as I've said before, that isn't happening unless the Twins find a trading partner, and they aren't going to get a starting third sacker without trading somebody decent. This is almost an unwinnable proposition for Bill Smith as he enters the off-season -- no matter what he does, there will be complaining, and lots of it.

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  • At Tue Sep 18, 02:51:00 PM , Blogger Marty said...

    My God...

    Another year of Nick Punto?

    I think I quit the Twins podcast too soon.

  • At Wed Sep 19, 06:58:00 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

    ridiculous. casilla needs to be playing right now so he can learn from his mistakes. punto makes too many bonehead mistakes for being a veteran, but gardy loves him. he's keeping casilla on the bench right now so that he can't prove himself. then gardy can have the job over to his boy punto next year. the best way for casilla to learn is to play every day and gardy won't let him do that.

  • At Wed Sep 19, 09:09:00 AM , Blogger JST said...

    Anon -- My general preference would be to turn the position over to Casilla immediately and let him succeed or fail at the start of the 2008 season -- in other words, I agree with you.

    However, I still think the things that I've said before are true, and that the Twins might not be completely crazy to give Punto a shot at the job next year. He's brilliant defensively, his offensive shortcomings won't show up so much at 2B, there's no guarantee (or really, any indication) that Casilla would do better than a "normal" Punto (say, .255 or .260), and the Twins have him under contract for next year. For all of those reasons, I can understand why the Twins are moving in the direction that they seem to be moving in, even if I would do things differently.


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