Wolfson: Twins expected to attend Michael Wuertz auditions
1500ESPN.com's Darren Wolfson tweets that the Twins may be one of several teams looking at free agent Michael Wuertz's tryouts next week.
In our TwinsCentric Offseason GM Handbook, here's what I wrote about him:
Dating back to 2009, the Austin, Minnesota native held baseball's highest swinging strike rate (15.9%) according to Fangraphs.com's data. The right-handed Wuertz leaned heavily on a slider throughout his career and tossed it 63.4% of the time in the past three seasons, which considering his hand and wrist injuries may have made that particular pitch harder to throw.
To take a page out of the Raysí playbook, Wuertz is the kind of inexpensive talent they would roll the dice on. Sure, heís got plenty of problems, he has suffered shoulder injuries the past two seasons, his fastballís velocity was down to 88-mph last year and his command was nearly non-existent. However, because of his slider that he favors, he still was able to get a swing-and-miss at a very high clip (12.4%). In the seasonís first-half, he was effective, throwing 25.1 innings with a 2.49 ERA and a good 23/12 K/BB ratio. On top of that, he held opponents to a .189 batting average against. From July onward he struggled mightily, throwing 8.1 innings with a 9/14 K/BB ratio and a repugnant .476 batting average against. For a million bucks (or more hopefully a minor league deal), the gamble that Wuertz can regain his early season success is merited.
It is hard to tell where he is at in this point of his career but with a vacancy left by Zumaya, simply taking a look at Wuertz cannot hurt.