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spideyo
05-13-2012, 07:48 PM
So far, the Twins are 3-1 when he's catching. Since he joined the team, they are 1-7 when he's on the bench. He hasn't really hit any worse than we expected, and isn't really hitting any worse than expected. He's got 3 hits and one run over 12 ABs, compared to Plouffe's 4 hits and two runs in 31 AB over his last ten games.

When Mourneau comes back, I really think Butera's worth keeping around. It's going to be a bit of a juggle to get Doumit and Mourneau AB's, but honestly I'd much rather have Butera starting and Doumit as a PH option than the other way around.

Thoughts?

minn55441
05-13-2012, 08:19 PM
You have to keep Doumit's bat in the lineup everyday end of discussion. I have always been a big Plouffe backer and I've always thought if we just gave him a chance, he would eventually produce. I have now given up all hope. He has had chances at SS, 2B in the outfield and now at 3B. Not only does he struggle in the field and at the plate, he now can't even make simple baseball plays 1) like getting in a run down so that a run can score from third and 2) getting a good jump from third on a squeeze play. I'm not even going to mention the missed pop up in front of the plate. I'd like to see Drew stick around, but we need a another middle infielder or 3B. Hopefully Danny can get things figured out in Rochester and reclaim his spot at third and allow Gardy to play Lexi only as a Utility infielder.

The short answer to your question is that although I too would like to see Drew stick around, when Mourneau comes off the DL, he needs to go back to Rochester.

glanzer
05-13-2012, 08:52 PM
I agree Butera hasn't been as horrible as expected, but there's no way he should get starts over Doumit, who is leading the team in RBI, and would probably have a lot more if those batting behind him weren't so weak and he got some better pitches to hit. Butera may be improved and may be a good defensive catcher, but there's no way he starts over Doumit right now.

greengoblinrulz
05-13-2012, 09:01 PM
So far, the Twins are 3-1 when he's catching. Since he joined the team, they are 1-7 when he's on the bench. He hasn't really hit any worse than we expected, and isn't really hitting any worse than expected. He's got 3 hits and one run over 12 ABs, compared to Plouffe's 4 hits and two runs in 31 AB over his last ten games.

When Mourneau comes back, I really think Butera's worth keeping around. It's going to be a bit of a juggle to get Doumit and Mourneau AB's, but honestly I'd much rather have Butera starting and Doumit as a PH option than the other way around.

Thoughts?

Gardy?????

Seth Stohs
05-13-2012, 09:15 PM
He's been quite impressive behind the plate. I think he calls a great game and today, he deserves a lot of credit for diamond's results. offensively, I'm not worried about him at all. When looking at the TWins top 20 issues, Drew Butera probably isn't in them.

USAFChief
05-13-2012, 11:34 PM
He's been quite impressive behind the plate. I think he calls a great game and today, he deserves a lot of credit for diamond's results. offensively, I'm not worried about him at all. When looking at the TWins top 20 issues, Drew Butera probably isn't in them.

Well you miight not be worried, but The Twins are last in the AL in runs.

The likes of Drew Butera represent the problem, not the solution.

Montecore
05-14-2012, 12:29 AM
So, Butera's not horrible, and maybe helped Diamond pitch his second beauty. OK.

It's too bad about Plouffe. It seemed like he had a bat. Maybe if he hit at a .400 clip his next 10 games...In a way I'm glad the team's still hoping he'll still seize the day, you never know. And, Capps isn't an abomination. Another quasi-bright spot in a dark and lonely season.

glunn
05-14-2012, 01:37 AM
I agree Butera hasn't been as horrible as expected, but there's no way he should get starts over Doumit, who is leading the team in RBI, and would probably have a lot more if those batting behind him weren't so weak and he got some better pitches to hit. Butera may be improved and may be a good defensive catcher, but there's no way he starts over Doumit right now.

Is it possible that Butera deserves significant credit for the recent success of our pitchers? If so, then I would like to see him play often, because I am sick of seeing opponents scoring early and often. And Doumit might be worth trying at third base, so that we can get more production there, or he could play right field, first base and catch occasionally.

Maybe it's just a coincidence, or maybe I am mistaken, but my impression is that our pitchers fare better when he is catching.

Kirby_Waved_At_Me
05-14-2012, 08:14 AM
Yes, and the Twins are 2 - 0 in games that Scott Diamond starts- maybe he should start every game?

Sarcasm aside, I think it says more about how bad the starting rotation has been and less about Butera's presence behind the plate. He's certainly got a reputation as a good game caller, but I think 4 games is much too small a sample size to say that Butera needs more starts than he's already gotten.

The team is still going to need production throughout the lineup to be successful. I'd credit Dozier's call-up and Valencia's demotion as well with their recent modest success. It looks like it will still be a really rough season for the Twins, but the recent moves seem to have at least re-kindled some optimism.

twinsnorth49
05-14-2012, 08:40 AM
Butera has far from represented what's wrong with the Twins since he came back up. I'm not a big fan but the team was awful before he got here and they've been slightly less awful in the games he's played since being called up. If you want to blame the Twins for lacking better options than Butera that's fine but that's not Butera's fault, he hasn't hurt the team at all.

None of us are on the field but he certainly looks like he provides a steadying influence for Diamond, he came back after that wobbly 4th inning and settled right back in again, his communication with Butera seemed to play a part in that. 14 shutout innings for that battery, I'll take that any day, especially compared to what else we've seen so far.

JB_Iowa
05-14-2012, 09:09 AM
Honestly I wish I knew for sure what impact the catcher has on the pitcher. (I know there are some advanced metrics that give an idea but I'm not sure anything is totally accurate). When they show the centerfield camera angle, it is pretty clear that Butera presents a different target than Mauer and Doumit. Does that make a difference? Does his play calling make a difference? Has it just been that Diamond was used to him and is willing to trust his play calling and could spot his pitches?

There just hasn't been a big enough sample size this year to make a judgment. And last year was such a mess I'm not sure you can draw any conclusions there either.

Butera has been a little better at the plate -- how much of that can be credited to Brunansky? But you can't set Doumit down. Of course, I'm not convinced that Morneau will be back for a long period so we may end up with 3 catchers for a period yet.

Thrylos
05-14-2012, 09:23 AM
As far as Butera's hitting "improvement" it is all related to the Sample Size (12 PAs). And speaking of, he still has a .558 OPS; not ground shaking. On the other hand, I just hope some team is interested enough in him to be a thrown-in in an upcoming trade.

stringer bell
05-14-2012, 09:25 AM
In about a full season's worth of at-bats for a catcher, Butera has been historically bad as a hitter and decidedly average as a defender. I don't trust defensive metrics in general and certainly don't trust them for catchers in particular, but from what I've seen Drew is OK as a catch and throw guy, calls a decent game, but that can't make up for his terrible hitting, which has really no upside. If Drew miraculously hit .230 and mixed in an occasional walk or XBH, he would be fine to catch three days in two weeks, but I don't think that will happen.

mike wants wins
05-14-2012, 09:27 AM
I think you are mistaken in your understanding of cause and effect....

stringer bell
05-14-2012, 09:27 AM
On another side of this issue, catchers are falling like flies (Ianetta, Ramos, etc.). Given that the Twins look horrendous, perhaps they can get something of value for Doumit, who can hit and from my view has shown himself to be an acceptable receiver.

stringer bell
05-14-2012, 09:31 AM
So, Butera's not horrible, and maybe helped Diamond pitch his second beauty. OK.

It's too bad about Plouffe. It seemed like he had a bat. Maybe if he hit at a .400 clip his next 10 games...In a way I'm glad the team's still hoping he'll still seize the day, you never know. And, Capps isn't an abomination. Another quasi-bright spot in a dark and lonely season.I think the Twins should give Plouffe the rest of the month. I like him better at third than most here do, but he needs to hit to stick. In the early part of the season, I always have a rule--add a 4-4 to a guy who's struggling and see what the numbers look like and add an 0-10 to a guy who has started out hot. Numbers can change that quick right now. Even adding 4-4 to Plouffe's numbers wouldn't bring him above the Mendoza line, so he would need to be hot for more than a game or two to get to acceptability.

Boom Boom
05-14-2012, 09:45 AM
Since I was at that atrocity that was the Thursday night game, I've come to the conclusion that Doumit is a terrible defensive catcher. It's not just losing pop-ups and not thinking to look behind him for the ball - he lunges at pitches close to the corners of the plate, making it difficult for umpires to call them strikes. He's no more a catcher than Matt LeCroy was.

mike wants wins
05-14-2012, 10:00 AM
http://www.baseballprospectus.com/article.php?articleid=15093

if you follow the link for all catchers, you'll see that Butera has a negative influence on framing pitches. Even if you don't believe the numbers are precise, I'd say that the conclusions of the study indicate that Butera is likely not quite the help with the pitchers as you all think. He's about neutral. Now, compared to Doumit, he's a framing savant. Compared to Mauer, he's statisically about the same.

There is a huge difference between correlation, and causation. I find it amazing that people believe that Butera starting makes it more likely the Twins win games. His offense was historically bad last year. No amount of catcher defense can make up for the number of runs he does not produce as a hitter.

Seth Stohs
05-14-2012, 10:23 AM
I'll take my chances until Diamond starts struggling. I thought that Butera deserved a ton of credit for working with Diamond yesterday. I know his history and I accept his offense. Diamond did not have his best stuff at all. He was giving up some ropes, but Butera went out and talked to him at the right times. I thought his pitch selection was tremendous, knowing at certain times Diamond was just not throwing the ball where he wanted. I'm not a big Butera fan, but I do think that sometimes, just sometimes, you have to give credit where credit is due, and yesterday, I thought Butera deserved a ton of credit for his work with Diamond.

mike wants wins
05-14-2012, 10:36 AM
Seth, that is very fair. There will be games where he does make a positive difference, no doubt. The question is, is that likely to happen game after game after game.

Thrylos
05-14-2012, 11:24 AM
http://www.baseballprospectus.com/article.php?articleid=15093

if you follow the link for all catchers, you'll see that Butera has a negative influence on framing pitches. Even if you don't believe the numbers are precise, I'd say that the conclusions of the study indicate that Butera is likely not quite the help with the pitchers as you all think. He's about neutral. Now, compared to Doumit, he's a framing savant. Compared to Mauer, he's statisically about the same.

There is a huge difference between correlation, and causation. I find it amazing that people believe that Butera starting makes it more likely the Twins win games. His offense was historically bad last year. No amount of catcher defense can make up for the number of runs he does not produce as a hitter.

That's an interesting spreadsheet. I am not going to talk about Ramos, but if you look at it both Jose Morales and Rene Rivera are rated higher than Butera. And Morales could hit.

spideyo
05-14-2012, 11:35 AM
Really, all of this would be much easier to deal with if Morneau could come back and play 3-5 games a week at 1b. Let Doumit be our primary DH, where he's going to be most successful.

mikeee
05-14-2012, 10:11 PM
0-3.
I think he was 0-3 last time I watched too.

Shane Wahl
05-14-2012, 10:20 PM
Have to say this: I HATE Joe Mauer bashing and I hate Drew Butera as a baseball player.

But Joe Mauer and Drew Butera (playing) would be the least of our worries if this team had players who could play baseball at their own positions instead of:

Trevor Plouffe, Chris Parmelee (I feel bad that he is being "Revered" this year), Danny Valencia, Nick Blackburn, Carl Pavano, Francisco Liriano, Jason Marquis. Upgrade even just a bit on all seven of these players and Joe Mauer's lack of slugging and Drew Butera's starting major league games would be correctly put on the back-burner.

USAFChief
05-14-2012, 10:54 PM
Have to say this: I HATE Joe Mauer bashing and I hate Drew Butera as a baseball player.

But Joe Mauer and Drew Butera (playing) would be the least of our worries if this team had players who could play baseball at their own positions instead of:

Trevor Plouffe, Chris Parmelee (I feel bad that he is being "Revered" this year), Danny Valencia, Nick Blackburn, Carl Pavano, Francisco Liriano, Jason Marquis. Upgrade even just a bit on all seven of these players and Joe Mauer's lack of slugging and Drew Butera's starting major league games would be correctly put on the back-burner.

I've never understood this argument. You see it all the time. "Nick Punto would be just fine if everyone else would do their job." "He's just fine as a number 9 hitter."

Find better players? Yes. But dismiss one bad baseball player from the list of needed upgrades, because his suckiness would be less noticeable if the other players were better?

No.

Drew Butera hurts the Twins. There are only 9 hitters in a lineup. One terrible one hurts, no matter what the others do. Blaming them for not making up for him misses the point.

snepp
05-14-2012, 11:18 PM
"Nick Punto would be just fine if everyone else would do their job."

That's always been one of my absolute favorites.


If anything a black hole like Butera should be among the first places to look for upgrades (not the last) as they've set the bar so incredibly low there's a ton of room for potential improvement.

Riverbrian
05-14-2012, 11:27 PM
Drew Butera is special... Not many players can turn an American league team into a National league team. Drew does this by negating the DH position by his presence in the lineup. We should all marvel at this powerful ability.

I just want to point out that he made his 5th start of the season tonight. Luke Hughes had 10 at bats. Luke Hughes wasn't Robinson Cano but I want to point out that Butera made his 5th start tonight and compare that with Lukes 10 at bats and being shown the door.

Did I mention 11 games up and 5 starts. I often have no point but often feel like typing anyway.

USAFChief
05-14-2012, 11:43 PM
Drew Butera is special... Not many players can turn an American league team into a National league team. Drew does this by negating the DH position by his presence in the lineup. We should all marvel at this powerful ability.

I just want to point out that he made his 5th start of the season tonight. Luke Hughes had 10 at bats. Luke Hughes wasn't Robinson Cano but I want to point out that Butera made his 5th start tonight and compare that with Lukes 10 at bats and being shown the door.

Did I mention 11 games up and 5 starts. I often have no point but often feel like typing anyway.

One more start at C than Mauer over that time frame.

Shane Wahl
05-14-2012, 11:48 PM
You missed the point entirely. Of course, and this was clear as I actually stated "I hate Drew Butera as a baseball player," Drew shouldn't be anything but a organizational AAA catcher to help pitchers coming up the system, but how much complaining was being done in 2010 about him? Having a third catcher like that is a luxury on loaded teams.

USAFChief
05-14-2012, 11:57 PM
You missed the point entirely. Of course, and this was clear as I actually stated "I hate Drew Butera as a baseball player," Drew shouldn't be anything but a organizational AAA catcher to help pitchers coming up the system, but how much complaining was being done in 2010 about him? Having a third catcher like that is a luxury on loaded teams.

I missed the point? You mentioned 8 other players and their assorted failures in your Drew Butera post.

BTW, I (and many others) complained bitterly about Drew Butera all through 2010. Rightfully so, too.

Shane Wahl
05-15-2012, 12:13 AM
I missed the point? You mentioned 8 other players and their assorted failures in your Drew Butera post.

BTW, I (and many others) complained bitterly about Drew Butera all through 2010. Rightfully so, too.

The idea is that Drew Butera is not supposed to be on a team unless it is very good. You can complain about him now, but there are far bigger problems just with the offense.

On the other hand, I have been adamant about having this joke player on the roster at all and how he CLEARLY is loved by Gardenhire, so he WILL start way too much.

Riverbrian
05-15-2012, 12:30 AM
One more start at C than Mauer over that time frame.

Gardy gets the same newsletters that all the other managers get... Right? Those newsletters professionally prepared that contain hitting charts, tendencies, hot and cold zones. Numerous percentage breakouts and breakdowns. Comparisons, batter vs pitcher, left right splits, day night splits, home away etc... Historical data, scouting reports and projections. Is it possible the info is password protected and Gardy forgot the password.

If Gardy is getting this info like he should be getting. Can you imagine what data is in these reports leading to 5 starts in less than two weeks for a third catcher. I believe he has started at catcher more then the other two. By definition this makes Butera the #1.

snepp
05-15-2012, 12:30 AM
Players that OPS .500 don't belong in the major leagues, regardless of the quality of team.

Shane Wahl
05-15-2012, 12:59 AM
Here I find myself in a position of defending (not really at all) a guy who I have ridiculed and scorned the Twins for having on the roster. I named 8 guys who matter WAY more than Drew Butera. There are 22 or 23 guys who matter more, generally, and even if this joke is starting, there are likely a dozen or so who matter more.

Obviously Joe Mauer should be trusted to call games for Diamond and Pavano. And Doumit too.

But Butera is not doing the damage that Trevor Plouffe, Chris Parmelee, Danny Valencia, and those four SP have done already. He's playing a defensive position and they are starting at offensive positions or are starting pitchers for Christ's sake.

stringer bell
05-15-2012, 05:17 AM
Here I find myself in a position of defending (not really at all) a guy who I have ridiculed and scorned the Twins for having on the roster. I named 8 guys who matter WAY more than Drew Butera. There are 22 or 23 guys who matter more, generally, and even if this joke is starting, there are likely a dozen or so who matter more.

Obviously Joe Mauer should be trusted to call games for Diamond and Pavano. And Doumit too.

But Butera is not doing the damage that Trevor Plouffe, Chris Parmelee, Danny Valencia, and those four SP have done already. He's playing a defensive position and they are starting at offensive positions or are starting pitchers for Christ's sake.
Good take.

mike wants wins
05-15-2012, 08:48 AM
Regardless of whether or not it is the biggest issue with the team, starting Butera 5 times in less than 5-6 weeks is an issue for this team. He's just not good at his job. Starting him 5 times in two weeks? That's not a good sign for the quality of your team.

twinsnorth49
05-15-2012, 09:22 AM
Drew Butera hurts the Twins. There are only 9 hitters in a lineup. One terrible one hurts, no matter what the others do. Blaming them for not making up for him misses the point.

So does Trevor Plouffe.

stringer bell
05-15-2012, 09:23 AM
Drew didn't block Cappsie's splitter cleanly, which cost the Twins the game. I just don't see him as much better than average defensively. With that bat, he has to be supercatcher and he's not.

twinsnorth49
05-15-2012, 09:31 AM
Gardy gets the same newsletters that all the other managers get... Right? Those newsletters professionally prepared that contain hitting charts, tendencies, hot and cold zones. Numerous percentage breakouts and breakdowns. Comparisons, batter vs pitcher, left right splits, day night splits, home away etc... Historical data, scouting reports and projections. Is it possible the info is password protected and Gardy forgot the password.

If Gardy is getting this info like he should be getting. Can you imagine what data is in these reports leading to 5 starts in less than two weeks for a third catcher. I believe he has started at catcher more then the other two. By definition this makes Butera the #1.

Butera changed the password.

Highabove
05-17-2012, 02:50 PM
Butera with three hits today.

Tom Burnansky miracle worker.

mikeee
05-17-2012, 02:52 PM
he must have eaten his spinach.

PopRiveter
05-17-2012, 03:28 PM
Drew is batting .350! I better type fast before he slips below .180.

StormJH1
05-17-2012, 03:52 PM
I refuse to get excited over Butera hitting "well" for a week or two because he's never a track record of even passable hitting at ANY level - minors or majors.

On the defensive side of things, yes, I think he's good at his job. I think he's notably better than Mauer, in fact, which is not to say that Mauer is "bad". But my issue is with people who argue this like it's "either/or". Butera got acquired and fast-tracked because he's Sal Butera's kid...and because Morales didn't work out and we traded Ramos. The people who defend him starting 2 out of 5 games because of his defense talk as if every decent defensive catcher in baseball hits .180, which clearly is not the case. Unfortunately, J.R. Towles' numbers at AAA are almost identical to Nishioka's line, and that's unlikely to improve since he's a .187 hitter over 5 seasons in the majors.

Agree with the posters above on the "Nick Punto" argument, except that Butera is so below average even for a catcher, that there's really no hiding him.

CDog
05-17-2012, 04:07 PM
Butera got acquired and fast-tracked because he's Sal Butera's kid...

Seems a wee bit speculative to be stated as a fact.

scottyc35
05-17-2012, 07:29 PM
no doubt, Butera is the least of our worries

Riverbrian
05-18-2012, 12:29 AM
If Drew Butera continues to hit. I will eat my crow with a knife and fork. However I will use my spoon to scoop out my eyeballs because I will have seen it all and there will be no need to see no more.

Ive been an advocate for playing different players to find the hot hitter and rest the cold ones. I never dreamed that Drew Butera could be an example of what I've been advocating. Drew Butera hitting .350... I can't believe I'm saying this. Play him until he cools off.

snepp
05-18-2012, 03:17 AM
Sample size, sample size, sample size.


Drew Butera Batting Gamelogs for Career Games 82 to 89




Date
Tm
G
GS
Rslt
PA
AB
R
H
2B
3B
HR
RBI
BB
IBB
SO
HBP
SH
SF
ROE
GDP
SB
CS
BA
OBP
SLG
OPS
BAbip
aLI
WPA
RE24


May 29, 2011 to Jun 10, 2011
MIN
8
7
4-4
25
23
6
9
4
0
1
6
1
0
3
0
0
1
0
1
0
0
.391
.400
.696
1.096
.400
.88
0.165
2.97



Drew Butera Batting Gamelogs for Career Games 137 to 142


Date
Tm
G
GS
Rslt
PA
AB
R
H
2B
3B
HR
RBI
BB
IBB
SO
HBP
SH
SF
ROE
GDP
SB
CS
BA
OBP
SLG
OPS
BAbip
aLI
WPA
RE24


Sep 22, 2011 to Sep 28, 2011
MIN
6
6
3-3
18
12
3
5
0
1
0
4
3
0
1
0
3
0
0
1
0
0
.417
.533
.583
1.117
.455
1.54
0.016
1.35

JB_Iowa
05-18-2012, 08:14 AM
At this point, what difference does it make? If by some miracle he continues his hot streak, it helps the team win and maybe makes him a tradeable asset.

It's not like this team is sitting a bunch of .300 (or even .250 or .200) hitters so that Butera can play.

The test will be if he cools off. Will Gardenhire sit him or will the team send him down? That's the only part of the scenario that is troublesome.

whydidnt
05-18-2012, 09:41 AM
At this point, what difference does it make? If by some miracle he continues his hot streak, it helps the team win and maybe makes him a tradeable asset.

It's not like this team is sitting a bunch of .300 (or even .250 or .200) hitters so that Butera can play.

The test will be if he cools off. Will Gardenhire sit him or will the team send him down? That's the only part of the scenario that is troublesome.

I can't argue with your point. For me, and probably a lot of others though, I think Butera stands out as the poster boy of what's wrong with the Twins. We see them continue to run out guys that have no business being in a major league lineup over and over again. When the off season comes, rather than upgrade even a little, we just bring them back and do it over again, and then watch Gardy's face turn red when the team loses. You can't expect to win when you are willing to use guys like Butera as your regular catcher for extended periods unless the rest of your lineup features a pile of hall of famers in their prime. Sure he's not the only problem they have, but it's probably the one they continue to repeat the most. It shows a blind spot in the organization, where for some reason certain players are allowed to fail over and over again, yet seem to be "favorites", and other guys don't seem to be given much of chance and are shipped out. It would be one thing to allow a guy like Butera to fail consistently if he had some sort of track record that indicated he could improve, but he doesn't.

StormJH1
05-18-2012, 09:45 AM
I can't argue with your point. For me, and probably a lot of others though, I think Butera stands out as the poster boy of what's wrong with the Twins. We see them continue to run out guys that have no business being in a major league lineup over and over again. When the off season comes, rather than upgrade even a little, we just bring them back and do it over again, and then watch Gardy's face turn red when the team loses. You can't expect to win when you are willing to use guys like Butera as your regular catcher for extended periods unless the rest of your lineup features a pile of hall of famers in their prime. Sure he's not the only problem they have, but it's probably the one they continue to repeat the most. It shows a blind spot in the organization, where for some reason certain players are allowed to fail over and over again, yet seem to be "favorites", and other guys don't seem to be given much of chance and are shipped out. It would be one thing to allow a guy like Butera to fail consistently if he had some sort of track record that indicated he could improve, but he doesn't.

I chuckled when I got to "we just bring them back...and watch Gardy's face turn red". Oh, and I agree with your entire take.