Gardy's fixation on backup catchers
Had a chuckle reading Christina Kahrl's Roster Roundup on ESPN this morning: "Please think these things through: The Twins might be bad on offense, but Ron Gardenhire’s being a worrywart over having Joe Mauer and Ryan Doumit in the same lineup is a way to make a bad lineup worse." I couldn't agree more. I grow so tired of hearing about his worry about his catcher getting injured and not having a replacement. It's not like that's something that happens every day, and even if it does, having to use a pitcher to bat once or twice isn't any worse than having Drew Butera bat 3 or 4 times a game, and Gardy seemed to have no problem with that over the last few years. "Butera is one of the only guys with a realistic chance of getting serious playing time in 2012 who will contribute more than an typical bench player by simply being absent from the lineup". Michael Bates at Baseball Prospectus posted last week, giving me another reason to chuckle (it was that or simply groan over how correct it was).
It's frustrating for the Twins to continue making poor decisions that could cost them a run every few games, simply over an irrational fear that might occur once every season, if that. Isn't it time for Terry Ryan or someone else on the Twins staff to tell Gardenhire to get over it and just put the best lineup out there? I'm pretty sure TR did not keep a 3rd catcher this year purposely to take that security blanket away from Gardenhire, much like Smith did last year by not re-signing Punto. The team shouldn't have to make roster decisions simply to keep the manager from hurting the team.