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View Full Version : Plouffe... for real?



Badsmerf
09-28-2012, 10:34 PM
Will the real Plouffe please stand up? Is it possible his thumb is still impacting his play so much that he can be posting a .591 OPS in September? I can't believe this is the same guy that was destroying every fastball thrown to him in June. Maybe he is just lost right now and Gardy is letting him work through his struggles, but man I just keep waiting for him to turn the corner again and it just wont happen. I guess this season is about over so there isn't much pain left to endure. Everything about his season had been positive until he got hurt though, for what its worth. I just hope he can come in next season healthy and put together a solid season.

Alex
09-28-2012, 11:04 PM
Will the real Plouffe please stand up? Is it possible his thumb is still impacting his play so much that he can be posting a .591 OPS in September? I can't believe this is the same guy that was destroying every fastball thrown to him in June. Maybe he is just lost right now and Gardy is letting him work through his struggles, but man I just keep waiting for him to turn the corner again and it just wont happen. I guess this season is about over so there isn't much pain left to endure. Everything about his season had been positive until he got hurt though, for what its worth. I just hope he can come in next season healthy and put together a solid season.

From what I remember, they said it would affect him all season until he was able to rest it.

TheLeviathan
09-28-2012, 11:08 PM
I would suggest that his last 5-6 years of baseball are probably more indicative than one ridiculous three week stretch. Defensively he's played better than expected though, no reason not to let him try next year.

jimbo92107
09-28-2012, 11:36 PM
I bet the thumb area where Plouffe bruised the bone hurts a lot, but it's manageable with anti-inflammatory drugs. It's one thing to have a slow-healing bone bruise, it's another to keep using that area to swing a baseball bat, including those wonderful inside pitches that make the bat transfer all the ball's energy to the injured spot.

I can't tell you that Trevor Plouffe will re-emerge as a star hitter next spring, but at least he'll be able to swing the bat normally. If his hand is fully healed, he's got a good chance to start knocking the ball around again.

SpiritofVodkaDave
09-29-2012, 12:41 AM
I look at Plouffe as a guy who will hit for around a 100-105 ops+ with 20-25 HR and play a solid but not great 3B for the twins moving fwd. that isn't all star or MVP type production but it's damn solid out of your number 7 hitter and certainly the best 3rd base option we have seen in many years. Also there is always the chance he greatly exceeds those numbers and proved the injury is what is causing his current struggles.

TheLeviathan
09-29-2012, 08:35 AM
Also there is always the chance he greatly exceeds those numbers and proved the injury is what is causing his current struggles.

There is also a far better chance he is a .700 OPS player with 10-15 homeruns. It's encouraging the way he hit homeruns, but Plouffe's 2012 is a brilliantly obvious example of SSS to be making future projections.

notoriousgod71
09-29-2012, 09:30 AM
Penciling Plouffe and Florimon as the left side of our infield is a big mistake in my opinion. One can't hit right handed pitching and one can't hit at all.

Twins Twerp
09-29-2012, 09:38 AM
Plouffe is plenty good enough to hold down the fort until the "Chosen One" can make his way up. This is still 3-4 years away so give Plouffe a shot, we aren't going to win any games in the next two seasons anyway

Badsmerf
09-29-2012, 07:27 PM
I just saying the Twins should probably get some kind of back-up for him going into next year. If he has a 600 OPS come June, he might not have what it takes. I love watching him this summer, but the past few months have been painful. The biggest part of it for me is he hasn't even been able to draw walks. Next year will obviously be a better tell, I just had to raise the question.

SpantheMan
09-29-2012, 07:48 PM
Sign a veteran or former prospect to a minor league deal to push plouffe in ST but give plouffe 2 months to show he belongs. He's the best option we have right now that has any upside.

Monkeypaws
09-30-2012, 05:50 PM
Hey, he is one of the PP boys with Parmalee :D

I think a winter of rest and getting healthy will bring back the beast-mode Plouffe. Two years in a row he has had major power, and one at the major league level.

Who are we to say how the thumb injury is affecting him? If he was sitting out nursing the wound people would be calling him a wuss.

Nick Nelson
09-30-2012, 11:05 PM
I would suggest that his last 5-6 years of baseball are probably more indicative than one ridiculous three week stretch.
Sounds good.

Plouffe over the last five seasons:

2008: 9 HR
2009: 10 HR
2010: 17 HR
2011: 23 HR
2012: 23 HR

I believe that's what they call "development." Your supposition that he's more likely to be a 10-15 HR guy isn't really supported by the above numbers. I think there's definitely room to question his ability to hit for average and get on base, but his power is legit, and to me his defense at third base is perfectly adequate.

beckmt
10-01-2012, 07:04 AM
Do not know if Plouffe is the answer to the third base problem, but he has more potential than the last few tried there. Give him next year to see where he is at, and then reevaluate. Twins will probably not be contenders next year anyway.

Brock Beauchamp
10-01-2012, 08:26 AM
I would suggest that his last 5-6 years of baseball are probably more indicative than one ridiculous three week stretch.
Sounds good.

Plouffe over the last five seasons:

2008: 9 HR
2009: 10 HR
2010: 17 HR
2011: 23 HR
2012: 23 HR

I believe that's what they call "development." Your supposition that he's more likely to be a 10-15 HR guy isn't really supported by the above numbers. I think there's definitely room to question his ability to hit for average and get on base, but his power is legit, and to me his defense at third base is perfectly adequate.

I'm still not convinced he's a 20+ homer guy but I think he'll be a serviceable 3B with solid power upside... Not unlike a Joe Crede type (I think Plouffe's defense will continue to improve). He might turn into that 20+ guy but I wouldn't bank on it, as I think he still needs to prove that he can consistently lay off the breaking ball when it's good and pound it when it's bad.

Twins Twerp
10-01-2012, 08:33 AM
He hit 20 hr's in half a season. I think he can be a 25-30 type guy when healthy. His defense is above average (better than MVP Cabrera) and may swipe some bases. He is plenty solid enough to hold the fort down until Sano's name is called. Then he will be an even better bench player/trade bait.

Twins Twerp
10-01-2012, 08:34 AM
AND he is not a huge raging D-bag like Valencia was.

SpiritofVodkaDave
10-01-2012, 08:57 AM
I would suggest that his last 5-6 years of baseball are probably more indicative than one ridiculous three week stretch.
Sounds good.

Plouffe over the last five seasons:

2008: 9 HR
2009: 10 HR
2010: 17 HR
2011: 23 HR
2012: 23 HR

I believe that's what they call "development." Your supposition that he's more likely to be a 10-15 HR guy isn't really supported by the above numbers. I think there's definitely room to question his ability to hit for average and get on base, but his power is legit, and to me his defense at third base is perfectly adequate.

I'm still not convinced he's a 20+ homer guy but I think he'll be a serviceable 3B with solid power upside... Not unlike a Joe Crede type (I think Plouffe's defense will continue to improve). He might turn into that 20+ guy but I wouldn't bank on it, as I think he still needs to prove that he can consistently lay off the breaking ball when it's good and pound it when it's bad.

Technically Plouffe already is a 20+ homer guy.

Brock Beauchamp
10-01-2012, 09:10 AM
I would suggest that his last 5-6 years of baseball are probably more indicative than one ridiculous three week stretch.
Sounds good.

Plouffe over the last five seasons:

2008: 9 HR
2009: 10 HR
2010: 17 HR
2011: 23 HR
2012: 23 HR

I believe that's what they call "development." Your supposition that he's more likely to be a 10-15 HR guy isn't really supported by the above numbers. I think there's definitely room to question his ability to hit for average and get on base, but his power is legit, and to me his defense at third base is perfectly adequate.

I'm still not convinced he's a 20+ homer guy but I think he'll be a serviceable 3B with solid power upside... Not unlike a Joe Crede type (I think Plouffe's defense will continue to improve). He might turn into that 20+ guy but I wouldn't bank on it, as I think he still needs to prove that he can consistently lay off the breaking ball when it's good and pound it when it's bad.

Technically Plouffe already is a 20+ homer guy.

Obviously he's a 20 homer guy this season. My point is that I'm not convinced he's a perennial 20 homer guy.

mike wants wins
10-01-2012, 09:29 AM
Real enough that I would not bring in some 3b to challenge him. They need ss and 2b and starting pitching. Bringing in a scrub just in case is how a team loses more games than it wins. You gotta roll the dice on a guy like plouffe. If sano is legit, it should not take four more years for him to be up.

phalvorson
10-01-2012, 10:13 AM
What happened to Sean Burroughs? I thought he was the veteran/backup 3B option. Did the Twins give up on him completely?

joeboo_22
10-01-2012, 01:38 PM
Thumb injuries suck balls, especially for power hitters. I don't think Plouffe will ever be a .300ba 35HR guy. But he will be a .230-.260ba 25 HR 20 2B and play marginal defense where he makes plays he shouldn't and bones plays he should.

nokomismod
10-01-2012, 02:36 PM
I would be happy if he was a healthy Crede type of player. The power numbers he showed at AAA last year also backup his power stats this year.
I caught part of Judd and Phun (AM1500) this morning talking about Mauer being ready to play 3B some or a lot next year in case Plouffe doesn't produce.

jay
10-01-2012, 02:41 PM
Talk today from Joe C at the Strib about Mauer taking some 3B next year. Any objections to a partial platoon where Mauer faces some righties from 3B? If Doumit takes the dish, that gets up to 7 or 8 lefties in the lineup against righties (depending on how the Span/Revere and MI pan out).

Willihammer
10-01-2012, 03:13 PM
Ya the more the merrier. I don't think Mauer can possibly be as bad as Plouffe over there anyway.

TheLeviathan
10-01-2012, 04:22 PM
Plouffe over the last five seasons:

2008: 9 HR
2009: 10 HR
2010: 17 HR
2011: 23 HR
2012: 23 HR

I believe that's what they call "development." Your supposition that he's more likely to be a 10-15 HR guy isn't really supported by the above numbers. I think there's definitely room to question his ability to hit for average and get on base, but his power is legit, and to me his defense at third base is perfectly adequate.

10-15 homeruns isn't supported by the above numbers but it is by a three week stretch? You're using the definition of a small sample size to buoy a season projection and then coupling that with trending minor league numbers? Yes, his play has gotten better but let's look at a few facts before we start projecting season-long numbers:

Half his homeruns were hit during a period in which he OPS'd 400 points higher than his season total. He was over .700 OPS only two out of six months of the season. His K:BB ratio is 3:1.

What you are citing is driven by a fluke. I want him to get a shot and to see if the injury was his problem or if he really is just a middling .650 OPS player who strikes out too much. Projecting based on small sample sized flukes should be beneath any serious argument.

Nick Nelson
10-01-2012, 05:10 PM
Why do I care how the home runs were distributed across the course of the season? He still hit them all. He's always been a streaky hitter, that doesn't take anything away from the fact that he has gradually developed into a very strong power hitter over the course of several years. I'm not saying he's a lock to hit 20-plus bombs next year but there's plenty of reason to think he will. This was not a Mauer-esque fluke.

TheLeviathan
10-01-2012, 06:31 PM
Why do I care how the home runs were distributed across the course of the season? I'm not saying he's a lock to hit 20-plus bombs next year but there's plenty of reason to think he will.

Because three weeks of ridiculousness versus four months of pretty sub-par play screams fluke. And flukes are poor justifications for projections which is why it's perfectly valid to think projecting this year forward is probably too optimistic. I'm not ruling out that he can hit 20+ home runs, but a 600-650 OPS third baseman who doesn't hit righties well isn't going to see the field enough to see that. And if his season next year looks more like April, May, August, and September than June - that's precisely what will happen.

10-15 I think is a much more reasonable hope considering just how buoyed his final numbers were by a stretch which any reasonable person would agree is unlikely to be sustainable or relied on. Even streaky hitters rarely do what he did for that couple week stretch and his numbers would look mighty unimpressive without that stretch.

Riverbrian
10-01-2012, 06:59 PM
The big stretch was an obvious fluke in comparison to what he has done prior and in comparison to almost very other hot streak by any other player.

It makes no sense to discuss weather it was a fluke or not. Of course it was... He was way too hot.

However... Power numbers like that... at the same time suggests Power period... We could use some of that.

The guy chases and it hurts him. If he gets it under control. The power will still be there and we will all be smiling.

He starts in 2013 and I won't bet against him being decent and i think he will be starting in 2016 as well.

I also won't bet anything important that he's a lock.

5 bucks I'll do... Here's to Plouffe... Go get em.

TheLeviathan
10-01-2012, 07:09 PM
However... Power numbers like that... at the same time suggests Power period... We could use some of that.

yeah, he's definitely got potential. With no one pushing him next year (and since I think we'll not be very good again anyway) - roll him out there and see if he can turn that fluke into a more consistent level of production. I just can't take much away from this season other than that he's fielding a position capably for the first time since he was promoted. Offensively this season was pretty bad more often than it was pretty good, but it's a step forward from what we had seen.

Badsmerf
10-01-2012, 09:06 PM
I think we found Lev's man-crush! For realsies though, there should be a consensus that the Twins need to go into next season with their eyes open. For Lev to argue that his hot streak has tainted his numbers, you also should keep in mind he has played hurt which has hurt his numbers. How much? I don't think any of us know, but injuries like that do have a negative effect.

TheLeviathan
10-01-2012, 10:31 PM
I think we found Lev's man-crush! For realsies though, there should be a consensus that the Twins need to go into next season with their eyes open. For Lev to argue that his hot streak has tainted his numbers, you also should keep in mind he has played hurt which has hurt his numbers. How much? I don't think any of us know, but injuries like that do have a negative effect.

Right, which I'm not willing to write him off as just a fluke. His minor league numbers suggest a 700ish OPS is attainable but if it's the way he did it this year that isn't what we want. (4 pretty bad months and 1 ridiculously good month isn't what you want in an everyday starter)

The fact that he can play a position defensively is the real boon to this year. It at least allows us to try him out.

glunn
10-02-2012, 12:06 AM
The big stretch was an obvious fluke in comparison to what he has done prior and in comparison to almost very other hot streak by any other player.

It makes no sense to discuss weather it was a fluke or not. Of course it was... He was way too hot.

However... Power numbers like that... at the same time suggests Power period... We could use some of that.

The guy chases and it hurts him. If he gets it under control. The power will still be there and we will all be smiling.

He starts in 2013 and I won't bet against him being decent and i think he will be starting in 2016 as well.

I also won't bet anything important that he's a lock.

5 bucks I'll do... Here's to Plouffe... Go get em.

This makes a lot of sense to me. He will be very valuable if he can get the power under control and be more consistent.

Brock Beauchamp
10-02-2012, 07:06 AM
I think we found Lev's man-crush! For realsies though, there should be a consensus that the Twins need to go into next season with their eyes open. For Lev to argue that his hot streak has tainted his numbers, you also should keep in mind he has played hurt which has hurt his numbers. How much? I don't think any of us know, but injuries like that do have a negative effect.

Right, which I'm not willing to write him off as just a fluke. His minor league numbers suggest a 700ish OPS is attainable but if it's the way he did it this year that isn't what we want. (4 pretty bad months and 1 ridiculously good month isn't what you want in an everyday starter)

The fact that he can play a position defensively is the real boon to this year. It at least allows us to try him out.

On the other hand, players who neither walk nor hit for average tend to be very streaky hitters. The downside is that for a good portion of the year, they are average or slightly below average players. The upside is that they can carry the team for a month or more when they get hot.

I'm not a fan of players in the mold of Plouffe but given his hot streak this season and the organization's lack of competing players at third base, I think he has a spot on the roster for the foreseeable future.

stringer bell
10-02-2012, 09:23 AM
Two thoughts: Plouffe drew a lot of walks before he started his ridiculous power streak. I think he can be selective and, of course, getting ahead on some counts will give him more BP fastballs. I don't think he'll ever hit for a high average, but I can see an OPS over .800 with plenty of dingers.Cleveland doesn't need Jack Hannihan with Chisenhall healthy. Hannahan is a LH hitting 3B. I know he played a couple innings at SS against the Twins, but he is basically a 3B only. I wonder if the Twins would be interested in picking him up. His rep is that he's a plus defender.

TheLeviathan
10-02-2012, 04:05 PM
On the other hand, players who neither walk nor hit for average tend to be very streaky hitters. The downside is that for a good portion of the year, they are average or slightly below average players. The upside is that they can carry the team for a month or more when they get hot.

Well, part of the issue there is that the months that Plouffe wasn't a rockstar - he was worse than "slightly below average". I can handle average with surges - that's a good ballplayer. Putrid most of the year a Ruthian stretch is not what I want in an everyday player. In part, because it isn't very reliable.

Oxtung
10-02-2012, 04:12 PM
On the other hand, players who neither walk nor hit for average tend to be very streaky hitters. The downside is that for a good portion of the year, they are average or slightly below average players. The upside is that they can carry the team for a month or more when they get hot.

Why would that be? To me they are just like any other player except they reach base less overall. You'll find streaky hitters with exceptionally bad streaks and others who are just consistently poor with little variation in their output. I have no data to support my conclusion so if you have seen studies I would be interested in reading about it.

Of course none of that has to do with your larger point about Plouffe, who is a streaky hitter, I understand.

jokin
10-02-2012, 05:47 PM
I think we found Lev's man-crush! For realsies though, there should be a consensus that the Twins need to go into next season with their eyes open. For Lev to argue that his hot streak has tainted his numbers, you also should keep in mind he has played hurt which has hurt his numbers. How much? I don't think any of us know, but injuries like that do have a negative effect.

Right, which I'm not willing to write him off as just a fluke. His minor league numbers suggest a 700ish OPS is attainable but if it's the way he did it this year that isn't what we want. (4 pretty bad months and 1 ridiculously good month isn't what you want in an everyday starter)

The fact that he can play a position defensively is the real boon to this year. It at least allows us to try him out.

On the other hand, players who neither walk nor hit for average tend to be very streaky hitters. The downside is that for a good portion of the year, they are average or slightly below average players. The upside is that they can carry the team for a month or more when they get hot.

I'm not a fan of players in the mold of Plouffe but given his hot streak this season and the organization's lack of competing players at third base, I think he has a spot on the roster for the foreseeable future.

I think what's being overlooked is Plouffe's "after-month" approach at the plate after that ridiculous streak in June The clubs were catching on that throwing "up and in" to him was playing right into Plouffe's strength. In late June and into July, Plouffe got a constant diet of low and away pitches. Plouffe reacted correctly by going with the pitch-away to the right field gap, yielding him a 314/352/480 slash in late June/July- after the bulk of the unconscious run he maintained through most of June, his homers went way down but he did show decent discipline as a hitter during that stetch.

Given the Twins other more-pressing needs that must be addressed this off-season, the best solution is one I've advocated all along, platooning Plouffe and Mauer at 3B, cutting back on Plouffe's appearances against tougher righties, especially when he's in one of his bad streaks (this would also save Plouffe to give Gardy a RHPH option in many games when his usual PH-candidates have usually only been Butera and Casilla).

StormJH1
10-03-2012, 02:18 PM
I think he's a legit MLB 3rd baseman, and a guy with offensive upside we would have killed for in the days of Nick Punto, Mike Lamb, Tony Batista....

But realistically, I think he's a .250 hitter with about 20-25 HR power. And that's good enough to make nowhere near among our major "problems" heading into next year.

stringer bell
10-04-2012, 05:32 AM
Interesting that Ryan wasn't afraid to be critical of Plouffe during the in-game interview by DickBert during the final game. He pretty much dismissed Trevor from the outfield (fine) and pointed out his inconsistent play at third and highlighted his "lateral mobility" issue as well.

Plouffe played better than I ever expected in the field (the bar was set pretty low) and produced power, a commodity that the Twins really lack. If he can pick up the "D" and OPS in the .700s, I don't think the Twins have a real problem at third base.

IdahoPilgrim
10-04-2012, 06:26 AM
Interesting that Ryan wasn't afraid to be critical of Plouffe during the in-game interview by DickBert during the final game. He pretty much dismissed Trevor from the outfield (fine) and pointed out his inconsistent play at third and highlighted his "lateral mobility" issue as well.

Plouffe played better than I ever expected in the field (the bar was set pretty low) and produced power, a commodity that the Twins really lack. If he can pick up the "D" and OPS in the .700s, I don't think the Twins have a real problem at third base.

I agree - if he can improve both offensively and defensively, he'll be a better player.;)

stringer bell
10-04-2012, 09:32 AM
Interesting that Ryan wasn't afraid to be critical of Plouffe during the in-game interview by DickBert during the final game. He pretty much dismissed Trevor from the outfield (fine) and pointed out his inconsistent play at third and highlighted his "lateral mobility" issue as well.Plouffe played better than I ever expected in the field (the bar was set pretty low) and produced power, a commodity that the Twins really lack. If he can pick up the "D" and OPS in the .700s, I don't think the Twins have a real problem at third base.I agree - if he can improve both offensively and defensively, he'll be a better player.;)Since Plouffe had played very little at third, I think it is reasonable that he will improve defensively. Ryan mentioned lateral mobility issues, which might be tough to fix, but Plouffe's arm was more accurate than I thought it would be while he didn't boot an inordinate number of balls either. Offensively, he's made strides two consecutive years. I think he'll OPS in the mid .700s, with a chance to be better.

nokomismod
10-04-2012, 10:23 AM
How much improvement on the defensive side of his game can we expect from a player that is 27ish? It seems to be a lack of focus at times with him and our former guy, DValencia.

Dilligaf69
10-04-2012, 10:34 AM
He'll get a fair shot at 3B and unless the Twins can upgrade significantly this offseason he'll more then likely be the front runner. The more reasonable approach will be to get a defensive 3B type who can back him up but I'd think the Twins want his power potential in the lineup and if he can hit .250 ish and 30 HR's which is possible over a full season then I would take that and so would the Twins. I just really think the thumb injury really derailed his season.

Badsmerf
10-04-2012, 11:56 AM
.250 with 30HR would be awesome IMO. The Twins could have a pretty potent line-up next year... even if they have a black hole in one of the MI spots (Carroll finished the season very well and I'd be fine with him next year). At least Plouffesie finished the season strong. Hopefully an offseason of rest and strengthening can help him.

mike wants wins
10-04-2012, 03:33 PM
KLAW is not a believer in him or parmalee, BTW. Mentioned in today's chat.