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Who Fits Where at the Deadline

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 01:41 PM
I wrote an article on some fits I see for potential Twins trade chips:   https://t.co/XJ3M090mt4   As always, discussion is app...
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Total System Failure Requires a Total Front Office Reset

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 01:38 PM
Yesterday I posted about how the Twins have relatively few people in their front office compared to some other teams (such as TB, CHC, PI...
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Game Thread: Twins @ Red Sox, 7/23 @ 6:10pm CT

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 01:41 PM
1. Everyone remember to schedule an appointment with your manicurist after last night? There may be unreasonably long waits for walk in b...
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Article: Twins Minor League Report (7/22): Berrios Baffle...

Twins Minor League Talk Today, 01:22 PM
Kyle Gibson was terrific, but Brandon Kintzler had to pull a Houdini Act to give the Twins a 2-1 lead on Friday night in Boston. The bigg...
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Article: To Tank Or Not To Tank?

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 01:18 PM
After getting off to the worst start in franchise history, the Twins appear to be turning things around this month, but is that something...
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The Maturation of Trevor Plouffe

As spring training began in Twins Territory, there were questions about who should be starting at third base when the team headed north. Trevor Plouffe was coming off an underwhelming season where he dealt with some injuries and he struggled defensively at third base. Miguel Sano was ranked as one of the best prospects in the game and his powerful swing looked primed to make his debut.

http://twinsdaily.co...=1Flash-forward a couple months and Sano is recovering from Tommy John surgery while Plouffe has continued to look more comfortable at the plate and in the field. Plouffe is never going to be a high batting average player but he's changed some of his offensive approach. Last season, he set a career high in doubles with 22 and this season he's already notched 18 two-baggers. His OPS+ of 113 breaks his career high from back in 2012 when he went HR crazy for a few weeks.

There have been two big changes for Plouffe this season. The first has been his plate discipline and more importantly his ability to coax walks. He has 19 walks to his credit this year but he has increased is BB% from 6.5% in 2013 to close to 10% in 2014. Plouffe has also seen more pitches per game this season than last year. In 2013, he averaged 4.04 pitches seen per at-bat and that number has jumped to 4.60 in 2014.

Another area of improvement for Plouffe has been his ability to drive the ball to the opposite field. Last season, he had a total of six doubles to the opposite field and only two of those balls were to the gap. Already this season he has ten doubles to the opposite field and seven of those doubles are in the gap. His line drive percentage has also increased from 24.7% to 28.5%.

Plouffe is in his first year of being arbitration eligible since he qualified as a Super 2 player. His salary bumped up to $2.35 million this season and that number will continue to increase in the years to come. Here's a fun little player comparison between two former Twins first round picks.

Player A: 1544 PA, .260/.336/.444, 86 2B, 48 HR, .184 ISO, .304 BABIP
Player B: 1544 PA, .242/.305/.413, 78 2B, 51 HR, .171 ISO, .281 BABIP

Player A is Michael Cuddyer, another late bloomer with the Twins. Player B is Trevor Plouffe through Wednesday night's game in San Diego. It took Cuddyer over 1500 at-bats to consistently compile an OPS+ of over 100. Plouffe is around that mark and he just crossed the 1500 career at-bats.

If Plouffe can continue to make small improvements, the Twins are going to have to continue to find room for him on their line-up card.


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