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Article: Twins Must End Revolving Door At Shortstop

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#1 Cody Christie

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Posted 27 November 2012 - 10:22 AM

You can view the page at http://twinsdaily.co...or-at-shortstop

#2 YourHouseIsMyHouse

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Posted 27 November 2012 - 11:14 AM

That's pretty incredible to have 7 different guys in the last 7 years starting at SS Opening Day. It's pretty likely the Twins will next season too.

#3 ScottyB

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Posted 27 November 2012 - 11:17 AM

What may be the main problem for the Twins is that in this key position in the middle of the infield, the Twins don't realize that you can't get a decent SS for less than $5-$7M (not good or great, but decent). They have a knack for drafting decent to great CF'ers, so they've had a good pipeline of those since Puckett. They can't draft a SS to save their lives, and when they get a decent one like Hardy, they trade him because he's too expensive. As much as I hate the Yankees, they invested in Jeter and built around him, and because of that they have nearly constantly been in the playoffs during his tenure. The Twins need to make SS a cornerstone position - which they never have in over 50 years of existence.

#4 ScottyB

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Posted 27 November 2012 - 11:17 AM

I haven't given up on Dozier, by the way. In the minors Jeter had a year with over 50 errors, but they let him work through it. Jeter doesn't have great range, but his instincts are great because of his experience. If the Twins let him, that could be Dozier as well. They just have no patience, in this case it's on Gardy (and I'm a Gardy backer). Having no experienced infielders on the coaching staff doesn't help.

#5 Jim H

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Posted 27 November 2012 - 11:42 AM

I also feel like Dozier still could be the answer (well, medium term answer anyway) at shortstop. Certainly, Bartlett struggled in his first opportunity with the Twins and it wasn't like they had rushed him. There seems like there maybe an answer to the shortstop question in the minors, but since none of the possible answers have played above A ball, it would be nice to settle on somebody for the next few years.

We should see how the Twins feel about Florimon/Dozier by spring. If they don't bring in a real shortstop, likely through trade, they probably feel like one of the above 2 can handle the job for awhile.

#6 twinsnorth49

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Posted 27 November 2012 - 11:45 AM

What may be the main problem for the Twins is that in this key position in the middle of the infield, the Twins don't realize that you can't get a decent SS for less than $5-$7M (not good or great, but decent). They have a knack for drafting decent to great CF'ers, so they've had a good pipeline of those since Puckett. They can't draft a SS to save their lives, and when they get a decent one like Hardy, they trade him because he's too expensive. As much as I hate the Yankees, they invested in Jeter and built around him, and because of that they have nearly constantly been in the playoffs during his tenure. The Twins need to make SS a cornerstone position - which they never have in over 50 years of existence.


The Yankees had 10 different SS on opening day between Dent and Jeter. Any team would have built around a guy like Jeter, for as long as they could afford to, it wasn't something particularly shrewd of the Yankees, they just finally got the right player.

#7 old nurse

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Posted 27 November 2012 - 11:47 AM

The revolving started with Smith as GM.

#8 Boom Boom

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Posted 27 November 2012 - 11:54 AM

I'm not ready to give up on Dozier, but I think he's more suited to second base. He's at least got somewhat of a track record of hitting.

Did you know that Juan Castro was a better hitter in the minor leagues than Pedro Florimon?

#9 clutterheart

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Posted 27 November 2012 - 12:02 PM

I think you are using the metaphor "revolving door" incorrectly as that suggests they are using the same few guys in a rotation.

#10 Boom Boom

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Posted 27 November 2012 - 12:06 PM

I think you are using the metaphor "revolving door" incorrectly as that suggests they are using the same few guys in a rotation.


Good point. It seems more like a conga line.

#11 ThePuck

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Posted 27 November 2012 - 12:16 PM

with the way Gardy works his roster, it's not hard to understand why we haven't had a guy stick at shortstop or 2B. No one gets a chance to really get comfortable there. 'Guess that lineup' isn't conducive to position stability. We finally had a shortstop in Hardy, and Gardy wanted him gone. Smith traded him due to Gardy's wishes. Heck Gardy said even if Hardy stays, CASILLA would compete with Hardy for shortstop cause Casilla has speed and he liked his athleticism.

#12 Kwak

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Posted 27 November 2012 - 02:48 PM

The revolving started with Smith as GM.

Umm, no. It started when Guzman declared free agency and recieved an offer (much) higher than the Twins were willing to pay. There was a guy fron the Jays (Castro) who started in '05, and maybe early '06, eventually Bartlett (after his promotion). The beat proceeded when Bartlett was traded, and continues today. Ryan was the GM when Guzman left, and money was the main issue.

#13 Ex-Iowegian

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Posted 27 November 2012 - 05:36 PM

Heck Gardy said even if Hardy stays, CASILLA would compete with Hardy for shortstop cause Casilla has speed and he liked his athleticism.


Casilla, during that time, was showing a lot of promise to become a competent middle infielder. That has since changed, but I think many people thought that Casilla had a huge upside before Hardy left. And there always was the injury cloud that seemed to follow JJ arround. That combined with the desire for speed probably tipped the scales, at least in my mind.

Edited by Ex-Iowegian, 27 November 2012 - 05:42 PM.


#14 ThePuck

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Posted 27 November 2012 - 07:22 PM

Casilla, during that time, was showing a lot of promise to become a competent middle infielder. That has since changed, but I think many people thought that Casilla had a huge upside before Hardy left. .


When did he show the promise...especially at shortstop? Who thought he had huge upside (besides Gardy)? I'm sorry, I don't buy that at all...

...and as far a injury risk? Casilla isn't the model of injury-free

#15 cmathewson

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Posted 27 November 2012 - 09:20 PM

with the way Gardy works his roster, it's not hard to understand why we haven't had a guy stick at shortstop or 2B. No one gets a chance to really get comfortable there. 'Guess that lineup' isn't conducive to position stability. We finally had a shortstop in Hardy, and Gardy wanted him gone. Smith traded him due to Gardy's wishes. Heck Gardy said even if Hardy stays, CASILLA would compete with Hardy for shortstop cause Casilla has speed and he liked his athleticism.


Gardy's never satisfied with the shortstop position. He had two quality shortstops in the last decade and asked (or let) the front office to trade them without a viable replacement because he didn't like them: Bartlett, because he was quiet and moody in the clubhouse; Hardy because he's slow. Gardy never accepts his starting shortstop if he's not perfect. If he were a head football coach, there'd be a perpetual quarterback controversy.

Bottom line, this wouldn't be a story if Gardy accepted that shortstop is a difficult position to fill; you have to accept imperfection and help the player get better; and the player will not improve if he's continually criticized by his manager in the press and benched on the first sign of trouble. I have no confidence this situation will improve with the current manager.

#16 ThePuck

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Posted 27 November 2012 - 09:27 PM

with the way Gardy works his roster, it's not hard to understand why we haven't had a guy stick at shortstop or 2B. No one gets a chance to really get comfortable there. 'Guess that lineup' isn't conducive to position stability. We finally had a shortstop in Hardy, and Gardy wanted him gone. Smith traded him due to Gardy's wishes. Heck Gardy said even if Hardy stays, CASILLA would compete with Hardy for shortstop cause Casilla has speed and he liked his athleticism.


Gardy's never satisfied with the shortstop position. He had two quality shortstops in the last decade and asked (or let) the front office to trade them without a viable replacement because he didn't like them: Bartlett, because he was quiet and moody in the clubhouse; Hardy because he's slow. Gardy never accepts his starting shortstop if he's not perfect. If he were a head football coach, there'd be a perpetual quarterback controversy.

Bottom line, this wouldn't be a story if Gardy accepted that shortstop is a difficult position to fill; you have to accept imperfection and help the player get better; and the player will not improve if he's continually criticized by his manager in the press and benched on the first sign of trouble. I have no confidence this situation will improve with the current manager.


That's true...but what is weird about that, is that Hardy has always been one of the best defensive shortstop in the game...even when he was with us. In 2010, his UZR/150 was 12.8. Better than any starting shortstop in baseball that year. His actual UZR was 8.1, which ranked him 5th. (and remember, that's even though he was battling injury).

#17 Linus

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Posted 27 November 2012 - 09:47 PM

The worst part of the shortstop problem was how bad those two deals really were. Smith was crazy to trade Garza for Delmon straight up, much less throw Bartlett in on the deal. It drives me crazy that bill Smith traded for Hardy full well knowing that he was arbitration eligible the following year and was going to get more money than he was willing to pay. He traded Gomez for a one year rental.

#18 ThePuck

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Posted 27 November 2012 - 09:52 PM

The worst part of the shortstop problem was how bad those two deals really were. Smith was crazy to trade Garza for Delmon straight up, much less throw Bartlett in on the deal. It drives me crazy that bill Smith traded for Hardy full well knowing that he was arbitration eligible the following year and was going to get more money than he was willing to pay. He traded Gomez for a one year rental.


He didn't even get that much more in arbitration...and the Brewers jerked him around just enough to get him that extra year of arbitration to make him a more valuable trade chip...then we give that year away

#19 Brock Beauchamp

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 07:30 AM

The worst part of the shortstop problem was how bad those two deals really were. Smith was crazy to trade Garza for Delmon straight up, much less throw Bartlett in on the deal. It drives me crazy that bill Smith traded for Hardy full well knowing that he was arbitration eligible the following year and was going to get more money than he was willing to pay. He traded Gomez for a one year rental.


Garza for Young wasn't a bad trade on paper. Adding in Bartlett was a big mistake.

But Smith's real failure was trading Garza the same year as Santana. You simply DO NOT trade both your franchise pitcher and your best young starter in the same offseason and expect positive results. It's madness.

#20 mike wants wins

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 09:25 AM

Garza for Young was a bad trade on some people's paper.....but you ate right, the mistake was dealing both in the same year. What we do not know is who really was making what decisions that first year....and how much Gardy influenced them. Young is an RBI tease, the kind of guy old school writers love because of offensive counting stats...

#21 beckmt

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 09:38 AM

IT still could be correct to sign Stephen Drew. This is not likely to happen because TR has commented on the radio that all money available is going to be spent on pitching. Still need players (I wonder what Delmon Young wants, then we could trade Willingham for money pitching, Just Joking))
We are at least 2 years away from filling this black hole with a quality player, not a journeyman(best case)). Get some help.

#22 rgslone

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 08:12 PM

Trade Revere to the Reds for Cozart = problem solved.

#23 AllhopeisgoneMNTWINS

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 08:26 PM

Sign Stephen Drew...Problem Solved.

#24 jokin

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 09:20 PM

What may be the main problem for the Twins is that in this key position in the middle of the infield, the Twins don't realize that you can't get a decent SS for less than $5-$7M (not good or great, but decent). They have a knack for drafting decent to great CF'ers, so they've had a good pipeline of those since Puckett. They can't draft a SS to save their lives, and when they get a decent one like Hardy, they trade him because he's too expensive. As much as I hate the Yankees, they invested in Jeter and built around him, and because of that they have nearly constantly been in the playoffs during his tenure. The Twins need to make SS a cornerstone position - which they never have in over 50 years of existence.


The Red Sox have two ready-to-emerge potential cornerstone SSs and are ready to deal. Why not get both of them in trade for Mauer?

Problem solved for the next decade and a half.

#25 cmathewson

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 09:46 PM

Yeah, Hardy was the best fielding shortstop around here since Gagne. He even made those around him better by getting to balls in their zones. Valencia had a +13 UZR that year. Now he's out of a job. And say what you want about Hardy's offense, it was better than the shortstops we've had around here before or since. The Delmon deal, the Capps deal and the second Hardy deal were each worse than any trade Ryan ever made.

#26 Cris E

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 10:34 PM

This hole is probably more important than a third SP. As mentioned, CIN has shortstops and pitchers and MIN has CF to move, so that could work. I'd love to see S Drew contacted. There are options.

#27 Guest_USAFChief_*

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 11:24 PM

That Valencia "had a +13 UZR that year" says more about UZR than it does about Valencia, or Hardy for that matter. And it doesn't say anything good.

i do agree it was a head scratching mistake to dump Hardy though.

#28 snepp

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Posted 29 November 2012 - 12:24 AM

No, it says more about the misuse of a small sample than it does about UZR.


And he was +6, not 13, in said sample (roughly the equivalent of one month's worth of PA's).

#29 Top Gun

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Posted 29 November 2012 - 12:57 AM

You can;t buy everything and you can't buy a ss. Play the one you got you got plenty now to choose from.

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Posted 29 November 2012 - 06:50 PM

No, it says more about the misuse of a small sample than it does about UZR.


And he was +6, not 13, in said sample (roughly the equivalent of one month's worth of PA's).


I've never understood the theory that something which everyone says is inaccurate in small samples is suddenly accurate if you pile enough of those inaccurate small samples on top of each other.

That seems to me like saying "I know 1 + 1 doesn't equal 3, but if I add 1 + 1 = 3 enough times, I'm sure it will be correct."

A large sample size doesn't get accurate by adding together a bunch of inaccurate small samples.