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Article: What to do with Trevor Plouffe?

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#1 Seth Stohs

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Posted 05 September 2013 - 11:57 AM

You can view the page at http://twinsdaily.co...-Trevor-Plouffe

#2 mike wants wins

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Posted 05 September 2013 - 12:04 PM

I agree that is how it will play out.

#3 Kwak

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Posted 05 September 2013 - 12:12 PM

I posted almost exactly the same. Plouffe gets a juicy raise and is the starting 3B as the season begins. Sano will didplace him mid season, but Plouffe stays as a reserve/insurance policy against a Sano failure. Plouffe will be tradeable, so a non-tender would be a mistake.

#4 Rosterman

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Posted 05 September 2013 - 12:32 PM

You take a gamble that he will increase his value next season, or have him take a gamble and sign a 3-year extension for $5-8 million with hopes of having a bench job at the least. The Twins can afford it for next season, after that, he has to really earn his at-bats. He is not a Michael Cuddyer, yet, sadly, and may never be.

#5 Winston Smith

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Posted 05 September 2013 - 12:53 PM

I think Plouffe is a 4A player. Last year he hit 9 hrs in 12 gms, playing against some poor teams. His ave with RISP is .208 over his career. High leverage .216, low leverage .259.
As for 1st base if Mauers hitting does't carry the value at 1st how and the heck can Plouffe?

Baseball Ref has him campared to similar type hitters same age;


some list of players, ever hear of any of these guys?

His career ops+ is 94, Delmon Young same age is +98. Plouffe is a better fielder worse hitter. If the guy was average or better anywhere in the field he may be worth something.

IMO just another 4A player we keep coming up with.

#6 Boom Boom

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Posted 05 September 2013 - 12:57 PM

I think Plouffe is a 4A player. Last year he hit 9 hrs in 12 gms, playing against some poor teams. His ave with RISP is .208 over his career. High leverage .216, low leverage .259.
As for 1st base if Mauers hitting does't carry the value at 1st how and the heck can Plouffe?

Baseball Ref has him campared to similar type hitters same age;


some list of players, ever hear of any of these guys?


His career ops+ is 94, Delmon Young same age is +98. Plouffe is a better fielder worse hitter. If the guy was average or better anywhere in the field he may be worth something.

IMO just another 4A player we keep coming up with.


Munson was with the Tigers for a while, then I think the Twins had him on a minor league deal for a minute. Fields was bad for the White Sox for a couple years not too long ago.

#7 PSzalapski

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Posted 05 September 2013 - 01:04 PM

I just proposed finding a left-handed-hitting third baseman to platoon with Plouffe, as his OPS is consistently over .800 against lefties. Such a beast is rare, but how about signing Eric Chávez to a one-year deal to play third against righties?

#8 ThePuck

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Posted 05 September 2013 - 01:30 PM

I just proposed finding a left-handed-hitting third baseman to platoon with Plouffe, as his OPS is consistently over .800 against lefties. Such a beast is rare, but how about signing Eric Chávez to a one-year deal to play third against righties?


problem with platooning is that when we carry 13 pitchers and 3 catchers, there's hardly any room on the bench.

#9 John Bonnes

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Posted 05 September 2013 - 01:33 PM

I just proposed finding a left-handed-hitting third baseman to platoon with Plouffe, as his OPS is consistently over .800 against lefties. Such a beast is rare, but how about signing Eric Chávez to a one-year deal to play third against righties?


+1. Or put him in the DH role vs lefties, or in a 1B platoon, or as a right-handed bench bat. His splits are enormous. Even in this year, he's hitting .300+ against left-handed pitches and 859 OPS.

He is a platoon player, and a good one, in that he really mashes lefties. Rather than stretch him to the point of being worthless, the Twins need to accept it and utilize that.

#10 cmathewson

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Posted 05 September 2013 - 01:37 PM

I think he'll be near the bottom of the arbitration spread you post Seth--closer to $1.4 million, which is not a bad investment for 1.4 WAR. But I don't expect him to be the third baseman in June. I wonder if they could try him in RF again. Arcia's best position is LF. Willingham's is DH. Doumit's is backup C and PH. Mauer's probably 1B going forward. If so, Hermann is your starting catcher. So the only corner job available next year once Sano comes up is RF. He has the arm for it. Maybe he'd have a similar transition to Cuddyer. If not, nontender him after the year.

#11 orangevening

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Posted 05 September 2013 - 01:47 PM

just move him back to short and buy all the fans hockey gear on the 1st base line:p

#12 Willihammer

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Posted 05 September 2013 - 01:47 PM

I still like Plouffe's swing. Very balanced and easy. The pop is there, esp. to the pull side. If they can squeeze him into the middle infield, I'd take another look at him there, personally. But I'd understand if they gave other guys a shot at this point.

#13 orangevening

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Posted 05 September 2013 - 01:53 PM

Arcia's best position is LF.


I'm pretty sure I've heard Gardy say he would prefer Arcia in RF. Only reason he was playing LF was because of Parmalee can only play RF

#14 Seth Stohs

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Posted 05 September 2013 - 01:57 PM

Yeah, Arcia is definitely a better RF than LF. It's what he played most of the time in the minors. Played one season in CF, and only played about 5-6 games in LF in the minors.

#15 Steve_h

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Posted 05 September 2013 - 02:00 PM

Great column. Out of all of the 2013's unanswered questions, Plouffe's lack of development and stagnation ranks the highest for the Twins. Coming into '13 I head high hopes. His OPS had climbed from .697 in '11 to .756 in '12. I thought there was an outside chance of a Pedro Alvarez-type ascension offensively. Obviously that hasn't happened. The Twins need to keep him and play him at least as a platoon-typle player, even with Sano knocking on the door. Ideally, you could play him somewhere and bat him 7th or 8th and let him go. His versatility to play 1B or an OF spot is a must, especially after Sano arrives.

#16 nicksaviking

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Posted 05 September 2013 - 02:05 PM

The last month of the season I'd like to see both Plouffe and Dozier get some positional flexability due to who the Twins have lurking behind them. This should already be happening considering we are at the experience and experiments stage of the season. Though with a manager not under contract and fighting for his job next year I understand why this hasn't, and likely will not happen.

#17 Major Leauge Ready

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Posted 05 September 2013 - 02:16 PM

No need to anything yet. The Twins should not rush Sano. Let Plouffe start at 3rd next year. Worst case, he plays against LHP and acts as a super utility player when Sano arrives. Best but not likely case, he finally puts it together and finds some consistency on both sides of the ball. He becomes a nice trade piece if that should happen.

For me, Plouffe is one of the biggest disappointments of the 2013 season. The optimist in me was hoping that a sustainable form of the Plouffe that went on a rampage last year would show-up in 2013. The other is Parmelee but I still have some hope for him.

#18 DAM DC Twins Fans

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Posted 05 September 2013 - 03:10 PM

Somebody above said that Trevor is not Cuddyer...well try it...like they did with Cuddy...tell Trevor he will get the RF job when Sano is ready...and leave him there for a month or two...it worked with Cuddy a few years back...it is worth a shot.

#19 Shane Wahl

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Posted 05 September 2013 - 03:15 PM

Plouffe's major league abilities really limit him to a platoon role, either at first or in the corner OF and he should platoon with Parmelee so that the Twins can thus have one good player made from two.

#20 DJL44

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Posted 05 September 2013 - 03:25 PM

Not enough bat for that glove, not enough glove for that bat. He's a tweener who only has value at 3B and even then it isn't much. However, if Danny Valencia can find a bench role in the big leagues then so can Plouffe. When Sano finally displaces him he can platoon in the OF with Arcia, Presley and Parmelee. Do the Twins like him as the RH bench bat better than Colabello or Wilkin Ramirez?

Edited by DJL44, 05 September 2013 - 03:27 PM.


#21 Buck Nasty

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Posted 05 September 2013 - 04:46 PM

3rd base is only one hole on this squad. Use the same positional WAR comparison for all other positions on this team. You'll find we are set at catcher (assuming Mauer's there). Dozier/Floriman seem fine. But we don't rank very well at: 1B, 3B, LF, CF, RF or DH. That's a lot of holes. I realize we have some prospects coming which should fill those spots. But like Plouffe, obviously none of those guys are sure things. It would be nice if these guys would rise to the occassion when given a chance (Arcia, Hicks, Parmalee etc.)

#22 Jim H

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Posted 05 September 2013 - 05:28 PM

I agree that Arcia looks better in right than left as well. I also think that Arcia needs to be put there and just let him play. He is going to be good. As far as Plouffe goes, I agree with most of what has been said. He hasn't estabished that he can be a regular, but there is the power that continues to make him intriguing. Platooning him gets difficult with the limited position player bench most teams play with, but his positional flexability opens some possibilities. The Cuddyer comparsions have some merit, but his minor league track record and inconsistent major league play, largely suggest that he probably won't reach that level.

Fortunately for Plouffe, he should get more chances or at least one more good chance to establish himself as a regular or a guy that can be a regular somewhere. Sano would appear to need a bit more minor league seasoning and that could be true about Hicks as well. There could even be an opening at first. I don't really think his glove is that bad at 3rd, and that is probably his best fit. Of course with Sano coming, he would have to fit with some other team.

#23 Teflon

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Posted 05 September 2013 - 07:59 PM

These are some options:


#24 Don't Feed the Greed Guy

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Posted 05 September 2013 - 11:17 PM

Kill him? I say trade him. Baltimore might want to swap their budding 3b prospect. He hit 6 hr in 92 at bats with the parent club, posting a .293/.330/.587 split. Ever heard of him? Daniel Paul Valencia. But, you can call him Danny.

#25 Trevor0333

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Posted 06 September 2013 - 12:05 AM

Plouffe needs to be a 1B platoon with Parmalee next year with both players serving as a bench/4th OF when the other is not in the lineup.

It would be so much easier if Dozier could slide back over to SS for Rosario to come up as well.

#26 stringer bell

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Posted 06 September 2013 - 05:28 AM

Plouffe goes as far as his bat takes him. At 27, I can't see him being a good fielder anywhere, but perhaps he would be more serviceable at first base. At third, he still doesn't seem to have good reactions or instincts. A .700 OPS isn't enough to get regular play at a corner, .800 is good enough, but Trevor's poor second half has pushed that OPS close to .700.

#27 Badsmerf

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Posted 06 September 2013 - 07:02 AM

He had a pretty good first half. July and August were just horrible months. I'm guessing he gets a little more of a leash. Obviously, through the end of the year he'll get playing time and most likely through the beginning of next season too. Sano wont start with the Twins if they've learned anything with Benson, Parmelee, Hicks, Dozier... etc.
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#28 cmathewson

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Posted 06 September 2013 - 08:12 AM

Yeah, Arcia is definitely a better RF than LF. It's what he played most of the time in the minors. Played one season in CF, and only played about 5-6 games in LF in the minors.


OK, then move Plouffe to LF and make the Hammer the full-time DH. I just don't like Plouffe in the infield. He doesn't have the quickness to be even middle of the pack.
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#29 cmathewson

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Posted 06 September 2013 - 08:19 AM

Plouffe goes as far as his bat takes him. At 27, I can't see him being a good fielder anywhere, but perhaps he would be more serviceable at first base. At third, he still doesn't seem to have good reactions or instincts. A .700 OPS isn't enough to get regular play at a corner, .800 is good enough, but Trevor's poor second half has pushed that OPS close to .700.


I still don't get why he's OK at first and not third. First is arguably a tougher position than third. You have to have the reactions of a third baseman and field throws and pick-offs. You do get slack on grounders in the hole when you hold guys on. But the better first basemen have range in the hole. If you're not going to hit like a first baseman (and Plouffe struggles to hit even like a third baseman--which is about 50 OPS points below the typical first baseman), and you are not a plus defender over there, you have no business playing there in the majors. Put him in the outfield where his slow-twitch muscles won't be as big of an issue.
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#30 jimbo92107

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Posted 06 September 2013 - 08:38 AM

First, Plouffe should get rid of his locked front knee batting stance. Sure, it gets his weight back, but it also limits the flexibility of his lower half when adjusting to pitches. Second, he's stale here, and needs to go to the Orioles or something. They seem to fix a lot of broken Twins. Or the Pirates, Seattle, or Colorado, or Arizona. Frankly, the Twins have a few guys in AA and AAA that could step in and do as well as Plouffe hitting, while being much better utility infielders. Cheaper guys. No reason not to give them a shot. Heck, just bring up Levi Micheal and throw him in at 3rd. Would that be any worse?