What happened to Rene Tosoni?
To reply to the original question of the title:
Joe Benson had 4 strike outs in 5 PAs tonight. His batting average is down to .133. For comparison purposes, Butera's is at .213 (Small sample size, but I'm sayin'...) I don't think that Joe would look at the CF this year for a while.
If the Twins fall out of the race, Span is a prime trade chip, but it will be too hard of a pill to swallow if they are still hanging around, simply because the team really has no other options for a leadoff hitter.
Trading Denard Span ? Please, he's a top 10 leadoff hitter in the game... and plays at least an average defensive CF... Joe Benson while a slight upgrade defensively is:
A) Right handed Hitter, with many more K's and less productive AB's as Span this year in 2012
B) Not a leadoff hitter like Span
C) Not the run-scorer/ base stealer at the top the lineup as SPan is when healthy.
The Twins almost dealt him for a reliever a couple years ago, but they couldn't even get the guy with Span. I wouldn't count on the Twins to score a major victory by dealing him. Outside of one trade where he was dealing from a position of strength with one of the easier GM marks, Ryan has never shown himself to be adept at making major league trades.
He has lost some trades. In hindsight who hasn't. Every GM has, even the greatest Baseball GM in the world(insert name here).
I myself once traded my car for an actual polar bear. I did research and a polar bear was 100,000 dollars in value at the time. My car had 30,000 miles. This was a no brainer. Then the truck shows up and drops the bear off at my house. The neighbors started complaining immediately. I had to build an enclosure because it turns out it was pretty strong and the rope and stake that worked for my dog wasn't getting it done. You would be surprised at the cost of seal meat and how much they eat and how much there was to clean up after, and worst of all, The bear didn't like to be hugged at all and those claws are real. I tried to give it a hug and it sliced me pretty good and I had to walk to the emergency room bleeding terribly because I had traded my car.
That was a bad deal. We've all made em.
I agree that Benson isn't there yet. He needs to cut down on the Ks, and I woudln't be surprised if the only MLB time he sees is in September. He has options, so this isn't a big deal. I also wouldn't be surprised if he's in AAA next year, as his batting eye needs some work. I think his upside is Cuddy, who has similar strengths/weaknesses at the plate, but with better defense. People forget that Cuddy took time to develop into what he is, and that's even more true with an impatient Gardy managing things.