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Does anyone REALLY believe that the Twins won't have 3 catchers on Opening Day?

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18 replies to this topic

Poll: How many catchers will come north? (35 member(s) have cast votes)

How many catchers will come north?

  1. Two (4 votes [11.43%])

    Percentage of vote: 11.43%

  2. Three (31 votes [88.57%])

    Percentage of vote: 88.57%

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#1 John Bonnes

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Posted 20 February 2012 - 03:05 PM

I'd put the chances of the Twins breaking camp with 3 catchers at 99%. Between Gardenhire's predilection towards a 3rd catcher, his inability to stomach Doumit's defense and the fact that there isn't another really desirable option (like a good bench bat), I don't see anyway that this team doesn't have a 3rd catcher. Oh, and it'll be Butera. OK, I'll throw in one caveat. If Doumit gets hurt and put on the DL, then I can see them going without a 3rd catcher. Which isn't all that unlikely, actually. Make that 80%.

#2 mikeee

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Posted 20 February 2012 - 03:32 PM

I am sure the automatic out will be the 3rd catcher.

#3 Dilligaf69

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Posted 20 February 2012 - 03:35 PM

Yeah at least to begin with...Now in June if Mauer and Doumit are healthy then I can see them going to two.

#4 BeefMaster

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Posted 20 February 2012 - 03:39 PM

This is pretty much exactly my thought. I was heartened by Antony's comments (in the TwinkieTown Q&A) that he considers Doumit the backup catcher, but I have a feeling that Gardy will fight for his security blanket, because as we all know, losing the designated hitter results in a forfeit and the summary execution of all parties involved.
"There are only two things that are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former." - Albert Einstein

#5 Nick Nelson

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Posted 20 February 2012 - 04:44 PM

The thing is that Doumit will often be starting at DH. In that situation, Gardy would lose his DH by shifting Doumit to catcher if Mauer had to come out of a game. The same would be true when their roles are flipped, with Mauer at DH and Doumit at catcher. Now, I'd argue that this isn't the worst thing in the world (you can call up a guy the next day if needed, and Butera can barely outhit a pitcher anyway) but it's something Gardy has always shown an extreme aversion to. Considering the durability issues with both Mauer and Doumit, I'd say it's all but certain the team will carry a third backstop.

#6 Thrylos

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Posted 20 February 2012 - 04:58 PM

Shipley just wrote at PP that Ryan said that "going with 3 catchers is not a given" and that everyone who goes North will have to "earn their spot in the team". That's great news, but I wonder how much of this is smoke and mirrors. He also talked about a 3-way competition (Butera, Towles, Rivera) if they were going North with 3 catchers. Another interesting tidbid is that Gardy did not close the door to having just 11 pitchers. If that is the case, there is no way that there will not be 3 catchers; and if so, I really liked what Rivera did with Liriano when he caught him...

#7 Andrew Bryz-Gornia

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Posted 20 February 2012 - 05:47 PM

The thing is that Doumit will often be starting at DH. In that situation, Gardy would lose his DH by shifting Doumit to catcher if Mauer had to come out of a game. The same would be true when their roles are flipped, with Mauer at DH and Doumit at catcher.

Now, I'd argue that this isn't the worst thing in the world (you can call up a guy the next day if needed, and Butera can barely outhit a pitcher anyway) but it's something Gardy has always shown an extreme aversion to. Considering the durability issues with both Mauer and Doumit, I'd say it's all but certain the team will carry a third backstop.


This is exactly what I would say about the Twins and Gardy.

#8 iTwins

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Posted 20 February 2012 - 06:31 PM

I have a sinking feeling that they'll be carrying 3 catchers into the regular season. Mauer and Doumit will likely rotate between C/1B/DH given the situation, meaning Butera will have to be held around out of simple necessity.

#9 Teflon

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Posted 20 February 2012 - 07:27 PM

The Twins signed former Astros catcher J.R. Towles - a career .187 hitter at the major league level - and invited him to spring training as a non-roster invitee. What I find interesting is that the team gave him uniform number 5 and not something in the 60s, 70s, or 80s. Read into that what you will.

Edited by Teflon, 20 February 2012 - 07:31 PM.


#10 YLT

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Posted 20 February 2012 - 09:03 PM

Shipley just wrote at PP that Ryan said that "going with 3 catchers is not a given" and that everyone who goes North will have to "earn their spot in the team". That's great news, but I wonder how much of this is smoke and mirrors. He also talked about a 3-way competition (Butera, Towles, Rivera) if they were going North with 3 catchers. Another interesting tidbid is that Gardy did not close the door to having just 11 pitchers. If that is the case, there is no way that there will not be 3 catchers; and if so, I really liked what Rivera did with Liriano when he caught him...


Yes, we've heard "earning their spot" many-a-spring training when in truth we know that rarely to be the case. I'd guess the Twins will carry Mauer, Doumit and Butera.

#11 Shane Wahl

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Posted 20 February 2012 - 11:08 PM

Towles may surprise everyone and be that guy. He also can serve as a pinch hitter late in a game. Such a thing can not be said about Butera. I think the Twins should just pay Butera a nice salary to play at Rochester forever to help develop pitching staffs as they move through the system. Towles and Danny Lehmann deserve a chance (waiting for Chris Herrmann) as we all know what Butera and Rivera have to offer.

#12 StormJH1

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Posted 21 February 2012 - 09:02 AM

The Twins signed former Astros catcher J.R. Towles - a career .187 hitter at the major league level - and invited him to spring training as a non-roster invitee. What I find interesting is that the team gave him uniform number 5 and not something in the 60s, 70s, or 80s. Read into that what you will.


I like the Towles signing, though I didn't realize until I checked his numbers just how bad his MLB hitting has been. At 28, he's basically a failed prospect, and his career line looks pretty much like Butera's. Except that Towles actually hits any time them they sent him to AAA, whereas Butera never really hit at the AA or AAA level. So, Towles is kind of like a "4A" player, whereas Butera is a guy that probably never should have gotten a shot except that Mauer fell to hell, we bailed out on Wilson Ramos and Jose Morales, and he's "Sal Butera's kid".

We don't really have "3 catchers", we have 2 and a half. We have no idea if Mauer can actually handle catching 3 or 4 times a week, but if he can, then I think they're hoping they can tolerate Doumit on the other days. But the odds of either Mauer or Doumit getting hurt are pretty freakin' good, so Towles has probably a better chance of getting significant time with the MLB club this year than does any other 4th string catcher in baseball.

#13 StormJH1

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Posted 21 February 2012 - 09:09 AM

Towles may surprise everyone and be that guy. He also can serve as a pinch hitter late in a game. Such a thing can not be said about Butera. I think the Twins should just pay Butera a nice salary to play at Rochester forever to help develop pitching staffs as they move through the system. Towles and Danny Lehmann deserve a chance (waiting for Chris Herrmann) as we all know what Butera and Rivera have to offer.

Anything is possible, but let's not get too carried away. Towles is a career .187 hitter over 484 plate appearances. He also struck out 95 times over that stretch.

By comparison, Jason Marquis is a career .197 hitter over 625 plate appearances, during his time batting in the NL.

#14 UCLA_YANKEE_COLA

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Posted 21 February 2012 - 03:40 PM

Imagine if Nick Punto had an identical twin that could catch (and still hit poorly). Gardy's head would explode.

#15 Gernzy

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Posted 23 February 2012 - 01:49 PM

I think that Sean Burroughs could have an impact on the team having 2 or 3 catchers. If he has a very good spring, it's going to be hard to keep him off the team.

#16 Cody Christie

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Posted 23 February 2012 - 02:00 PM

As others have said, it seems like the Twins are planning on frequently using Doumit as the DH. This means there will need to be a back-up catching option on the bench. Congrats Mr. Butera; you get to make another 25-man roster with hardly any offensive ability.

#17 Thrylos

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Posted 23 February 2012 - 02:09 PM

Anything is possible, but let's not get too carried away. Towles is a career .187 hitter over 484 plate appearances. He also struck out 95 times over that stretch.

By comparison, Jason Marquis is a career .197 hitter over 625 plate appearances, during his time batting in the NL.


and Drew is a career .178 hitter over 409 PAs with .481 career OPS; Towles' career OPS is .583 and Marquis' .499 BTW[TABLE="class: sortable stats_table row_summable"]


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#18 diehardtwinsfan

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Posted 23 February 2012 - 02:43 PM

I don't like the idea of having 3 catchers, but I won't be surprised. Like others, I want Towles as well. He at least could hit in the minors. I think a lot of this might end up on how well Parmalee does. If he forces his way to the DH spot, Doumit switches to right. You won't need to worrry about a 3rd catcher in that situation. If Ploufe does well, Doumit is forced into more of a DH role. I don't see the big deal as you'd lose your pitcher once for what, 2 or 3 at bats at best? The next day, you'd have someone from Rochester in the lineup.

#19 Loosey

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Posted 23 February 2012 - 03:17 PM

The way the Twins are going to use Doumit do you really consider him a 3rd catcher? Yes, catcher is his main position but the Twins have stated he is penciled in to be the DH. The way I look at it is they will come home with 2 catchers (Mauer and Butera) and a DH who can catch in an emergency.