Monday, March 30, 2009

Spring Training Statistics

With the season approaching, I thought I'd take a look at the Twins stats for spring training. Delmon Young has put together a solid spring with 4 doubles, 2 home runs, and a .295 batting average. Denard Span has managed just a .159 batting average while leading the team in at bats. You'd expect Morneau to lead the team in homers with 3, and not be too surprised that Gomez and Young are tied for the lead with him. But Matt Tolbert also has three.

What do all of these stats mean? The beauty of spring training statistics is that they mean whatever you want them to mean. I like Gomez and Young, so their performances indicate their merit in the lineup. I'm not a huge fan of Denard Span, so him numbers suggest he should ride the pine. And since I hate Nick Punto, his .429 batting average, 5 doubles, and 5 RBI's mean that he's wasted all of his production in March.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Brendan Harris

I guess I have few grievances left- except this time they aren't with the player. He switched positions three times last year. In the season of injured middle infielders, he was the only one who stayed healthy. He put together a respectable year at the plate for a middle infielder. His 7 HR's are just 3 short of Nick Punto's total as a Twin. Punto managed a combined 53 RBI's in 2007 and 2008 compared to the 49 for Harris in '08. (Harris also had 59 in '07 so don't try to say it was a fluke).

In the field, Harris is nothing to brag about, but his struggles at 2nd and 3rd can at least be somewhat excused with unfamiliarity. At short, his range was limited, but at least he didn't do anything stupid on the plays he could reach. He also has a strange tendency to set his feet before making a strong, accurate throw.

I guess I do have one complaint. Trim those sideburns! Then maybe Gardy will put you in the game.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

The Outfied

Please forgive the delay. A busy week at the office followed by a cold amidst the endless and pointless spring training which has produced little blog worthy material. That, and I didn't want to tip my hand in my roto league fantasy draft.

The consensus seems to be that the Twins enter 2009 with a surplus of outfielders. In reality, they are a Denard Span slump and the Dave Kingman ball falling and injuring Michael Cuddyer away from Jason Pridie stepping onto the field. Have Chad Allen, Dustan Mohr, Bobby Kielty, Lew Ford, and Jason Tyner lowered our expectations so much that we regard "enough" as an abundance?

Kubel should spend most of his time at DH. Span plays the field gracefully, but his minor league track record casts plenty of doubt that he can maintain his 2008 production. It's equally believable that Gomez could finish the year in Rochester as it is that he could win an MVP award. Cuddyer has a cannon, always hits the cut-off man, and has shown he can be a threat at the plate, but he has limited range, tends to strikeout, and suffers slapstick injuries. Delmon Young is the safest bet in '09, but between his awkward fielding and the Twins insistence on "correcting" his swing may limit him value. All things considered, this is a pretty good set of options for the outfield. But don't think for a second any of these guys are expendable. It's a long season, and there's no telling who will get hot and who will get hurt. Do we really want to see what David Winfree can do?