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Twins Birthdays--April 4

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Tom Herr (1956)
Casey Daigle (1981)

Second baseman Thomas Mitchell Herr was with the Twins for most of the 1988 season. Born in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, he signed with St. Louis as a free agent in 1974. He hit for a high average with a good OBP in the minors, although he showed little power. He reached AAA in 1978 and got to the majors for the first time in mid-August of 1979, staying for the rest of the season but getting only twelve at-bats. He was with St. Louis for most of 1980 and finally left the minors behind for good in 1981, becoming the Cardinals’ regular second baseman. Somehow, he got minor consideration for MVP that year despite hitting .268 with an OPS of .674. He was generally a decent but unspectacular singles hitter for St. Louis, but he did have a couple of very good years. He was hitting .323 in early August of 1983 when he season was cut short by injury, and he hit .302 in 1985, when the Cardinals went to the World Series. He was a productive offensive player in those years, but for the rest of his career in St. Louis he was a .260 hitter with a sub-.700 OPS. In late April of 1988, Herr was traded to Minnesota for Tom Brunansky. He missed about two months with injuries, but the rest of the time was who he had been most of his career, hitting .263/.349/.320 in 304 at-bats. After the season, the Twins traded him to Philadelphia with Eric Bullock and Tom Nieto for Shane Rawley and cash. He had one of his better years for the Phillies in 1989, hitting .287. In August of 1990, he was traded to the Mets. He was with the Mets for about a year, but was released in August of 1991 when he hit .194. The Giants signed him for the remainder of the season, but then Tom Herr’s playing career was over. After that, was a high school coach in Pennsylvania for twelve years, managed the Lancaster Barnstormers in the independent Atlantic League from 2005-2006, managed the Class A Hagerstown Suns in 2007, and then returned to the Atlantic League as a coach for Lancaster in 2008. He once again became the manager of the Barnstormers midway through the 2009 season, but was replaced by Butch Hobson after the 2010 season. No information about what Tom Herr is doing now was readily available, but he appears to still be living in the Lancaster area. He is reportedly hoping to get back into managing, but it does not appear he has been hired by anyone at this writing.

Right-hander Sean Casey Daigle did not play for the Twins, but he was in their farm system for much of 2008. He was born in Lake Charles, Louisiana, went to high school in Sulphur, Louisiana, and was drafted by Arizona in the first round in 1999. A starter in his minor league career through 2004, he really never had much success, never posting an ERA below four nor a WHIP below 1.4. Despite that, he was promoted to AA at the end of 2002, and skipped AAA, making his major league debut in the Diamondbacks rotation at the start of 2004. Predictably, it did not go well; he was sent back to AAA after going 2-3, 7.16 in ten starts. He moved to the bullpen in 2005 and had his first good minor league season, going 9-4, 2.67 for AA Tennessee, although still with a high WHIP. He started 2006 in the majors and did okay out of the bullpen, going 0-0, 3.65 but with a WHIP of 1.62 in 12.1 innings. He was back in AAA by late May. He struggled through two AAA seasons and became a free agent after the 2007 campaign. He signed with the Twins for 2008 and spent the season in Rochester. He had what was probably his best season there, going 1-5, 3.78, 1.38 WHIP (the best of his career), but was still released in late August. He signed with Houston for 2009 and spent two years in their organization. Most of that time was in AAA, but he came back to the majors for about six weeks in 2010, going 1-1, 11.32 in 10.1 innings. A free agent again after the season, he signed with San Francisco for 2011 but had a bad year at AAA Fresno. A year ago we closed his biography by stating that “One has to think that it may be time for him to move on to the next phase of his life.” He appears to have done so, as he did not sign with anyone for 2012. No information about what he’s done over the last year or so was readily available, but he’s married to Jennie Finch, so he’s got that going for him.
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