The two Twins' players affected the most by the Joe Mauer move to first base

Unless you did not have access to any media today, by now the permanent move of Joe Mauer to first base is a well known fact described by a ton of virtual ink.   I am not about to talk about the advantages or disadvantages of the move, but of the two players on the Twins' roster who will get affected the most.

Here is what we know:

  • Joe Mauer has moved to first base where presumably he will play in 90-95% of the Twins' games, DHing occasionally.
  • The Twins have 4 catchers on their 40 man roster (Ryan Doumit, Chris Herrmann, Eric Fryer, Josmil Pinto.)  
  • However, since they officially expressed interest on catchers outside the organization like Jarrod Saltalamacchia, it seems that they do not see any of those 4 options as their major starting option.

What does this mean?  For whom does the bell toll?

From those four catchers on the roster, 33 year old Ryan Doumit, has done the least catching and was shut down from catching after his concussion late in the season.   Furthermore, in 2013, he posted the lowest OPS of his career and his defensive skills are suited to a full time DH.  In 2013 DH will be a position that, unless traded, 35 year old Josh Willingham is slated to posses a large amount of time, supplemented potentially by Chris Parmelee who is walking in the season as the primary (albeit defensively deficient Twins' Right Fielder.)  In addition, 25 year old Chris Herrmann has a very similar skillset position wise as Ryan Doumit does, with the exception that he is seven years younger and about to enter his prime, has less home run power but is a much better defender both in the Outfield and as a Catcher.

Thus, Ryan Doumit will see a diminished playing time with the Twins in 2014.

Moving Mauer to first base, likely means the end of 30 year old Chris Colabello's Twins' career.  Chris is a great story coming from the independent leagues in the Twins' organization in 2012 to being the 2013 minor league player of the year hitting .352/.427/.639  with 24 HRs in 89 games with the Rochester Red Wings, the Twins' AAA affiliate.  But the 30 year old who won a cup of coffee in the majors because of his AAA performance, has a lot of holes in his game both on the plate and his limited fielding ability to take a spot on the Twins' bench in 2014, with Mauer manning first base.  I think that the Twins will remove him from the 40-man roster and he will likely get claimed by another team.

Thus, Cris Colabello is the second player affected by the Mauer move.

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