5 Days, 5 Twins waiver deadline trades: Day 3: Plouffe! Goes the weasel.

The waiver trade activity is about to pick up.  I am starting a new series dealing with potential Twins' trades during this period, but with a bit of outside the box thinking.   The rules around waiver trades are a bit complicated, so if you have not read the Waiver Trade Primer yet, feel free to do it.

This week I will be writing about 5 trades the Twins should do and they should seek out, because they make sense and it is fun to think a bit outside the box.

Day 3: Plouffe! Goes the weasel.

Arguably, Trevor Plouffe is not the poster-boy of a waiver trade, but the poster-boy of non-tendering: 

He is in the middle of the worst season of his MLB career hitting .245/.279/.382, while getting paid a robust $7.25 M salary, has another year of team control via arbitration that will likely rise his salary in 2017 and he is blocking one of the budding young superstars in the game.  So why should anyone trade for him, and what kind of value does he bring on the table?

To Plouffe's benefit, he has been nursing core muscle injuries all season that have been impacting his swing and when healthy he has been producing at his regular clip.  Also, when healthy his defense is on the top third of the league's third basemen.  Plus he can play a pretty good first base if needed.  All you need is to find a team that is desperate enough and is a good fit.   There are 2 of those, in the Twins' own division, but the one with the second best record in the AL, the league leading Cleveland Indians are the more desperate one:  Their starting third baseman is a double-headed beast of LF Jose Ramirez (who can hit and not field that great at 5'9", but when he plays third base, Abraham Almonde plays the OF who cannot hit) and no-hit/fair glove Michael Martinez.  Add the fact that the Tribe has Michael Napoli whose knees can use rest this time of the season at first, and there might be a match made in heaven here.

What would it take?  The Twins have no motivation of keeping Plouffe; as a matter of fact a rational Front Office will non-tender him this off-season.  A penny for a spool of thread, a penny for a needle. That’s the way the money goes, but it will take a bit more than that.  But it will definitely take another sell low type of guy.  And that would be 25 year old Cuban RHP Antonio Romero, who was signed in 2014 after 2 years of playing hiatus, was successful in 2015, but this season the wheels fell off having a cumulative 8.59 ERA, 1.964 WHIP, 6.1 BB/9, and 7.4 K/9 in high A and AA.

Sell low and hope high situation for both players.

I have no time to plead and pine
I have no time to wheedle
Kiss me quick, and then I'm gone
Plouffe! Goes the weasel

So Trevor Plouffe to the Indians for Antonio Romero, straight up, is the third Twins' trade that should happen, after Suzuki traded to the Orioles and Grossman to the Astros


Marv said...

I'm sure that if the Twins non-tender Plouffe many will say, "we didn't get anything for him!". I believe Romero is much the same as not getting anything. His WHIP has been shockingly bad and he sports a SO/9 that is 6.2 in 6 seasons.

I'm not sure about this one. Romero might be the nicest guy in the world (after my Dad) for all I know, but the 25 year old is unlikely to ever be a MLB pitcher.

Can't get behind this one.

Not at all sure what will become of Plouffe. I wouldn't be shocked to see the Twins re-sign him, if only to see that Sano can keep from blowing games at third and letting Plouffe go at a later date.

Not saying re-signing Plouffe is a good idea. I believe TR would have re-signed him.

thrylos98 said...

Plouffe is under control for next season. They just have to decide whether to offer arbitration (and pay $10M for him) or to not, and let him become a free agent (with the potential outcome that they can re-sign him at a lesser cost.) I just see absolutely no reason to have him on the team. He does not only block Sano at 3B so he can improve, he also blocks Park/Vargas at DH (assuming that with him on the team Sano moves to DH)