The fist cuts

Today was the announcement of the first cuts of spring training. The names were made public first, not by the conventional media and the beat writers who follow the Twins, but by Seth Stohs of Sethspeaks.net. Here is the list:

These 5 players are in the 40-man roster, so they were "optioned" to the minor league camp. Once a player is added to the 40-man roster, his 3 year option clock starts :

Armando Gabino
Trevor Plouffe
Deibinson Romero
Anthony Swarzak
Steve Tolleson

These 6 players were "non-roster invitees" (i.e. not on the 40-man roster) and were "reassigned" to the minor league camp:

Rob Delaney
Toby Gardenhire
Ben Julianel
Danny Lehmann
Dustin Martin
Danny Valencia

Surprises? Yes,actually quite a few:

  • Jose Mijares is still in the big club camp. After he showed up overweight and out of shape, and pitched fairly erratically, the consensus feeling was that he will be one of the first cuts. At this point, he probably belongs more here, than in a major league club. I am not sure that the remaining of the ST for him should not be of the drop 25 lbs in 2 weeks variety.

  • Kevin Mulvey and Brian Duensing are still in the camp. They have low chances of making the 25-man roster and as 2009 starters with Rochester, they would have benefited by more innings of work at the minor league camp

  • Jeff Christie has not been cut. I know that there is need for catchers to catcher bullpens and workouts, but the Twins could have gotten college kids to do than, instead of keeping a guy who was in Rochester last year from getting game work this spring. Christie had all of 2 AB this spring

  • Dustin Martin was cut. Dustin Martin was one of the best performers the first 3 weeks of the spring and outplayed Luis Matos, Jason Pridie and David Winfree. I would have thought that he would have been ahead of all 3 in the Twins' depth chart. For some reason, Gardenhire does not think so

  • Luis Matos is still with the club. After hitting .158/.158/.211 in 19 AB, taking awful routes at the outfield and having balls sail over his head in multiple occasions, I would have thought that the fate of the 30 year old who hit .250/.323/.352 in AAA in 2008 was all but sealed. Martin's great Arizona League performance and great Spring Training performance as well as the signing of 26 year old Justin Huber of Team Australia fame, who is a legitimate power threat from the right side of the plate, would have been the last nails in Matos' coffin. What do I know what is in Gardy's mind?

  • Steven Tolleson was cut. Steven was unlucky. He was out nursing injuries for a week and a half. He got all in all 11 unproductive at bats, putting zeros across the board (he had a double in the exhibition against team Netherlands.) Being part of the 40-man roster and having a great Arizona League performance to follow an excellent performance in the minors in 2008, in addition to the fact that he is a very good defender both in 2B and in SS, I thought that he had an outside chance to make the 25-man roster as a utility infielder. Gardy apparently did not think so.


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