I was in Milwaukee a few years back to catch the Twins and Brewers. Slowey was on the mound and the Twins pounded the Brewers staff. Slowey was a professional pitcher. Good pace. Good control. Commanding the strike zone. At the time my thoughts were with Baker and Slowey we have 40% of a starting staff that can be counted on for a few years.
Flash forward to 2011. Slowey finds himself in the doghouse. The reasons behind the decent to mop up man is based on his inability to stay healthy, quirky clubhouse demeanor and lack of late inning stamina. He wasn't likely to pitch deep into games. Manager Ron Gardenhire and others began to grumble publically, the clubhouse media started to mention little insights on how Slowey meshed in the clubhouse. I remember when Slowey and Perkins would chum around in the dugout during games. Last year Perkins had his role and seemed to distance himself from Slowey. Especially after Slowey barked about being moved to the bullpen.
After the 2011 season ended the writing was more than on the wall. It was expected that Slowey would be moved. The return on the investment was minimal. Traded to Colorado for a bag of balls. Colorado saw the value and accepted that Slowey may not be an ace - but had value. Shortly after Colorado got Slowey they signed him for 2.75 million. Before the ink was dry on the contract, Slowey was moved to Cleveland for a much better prospect that the Twins received on the original deal.
The point? Stop ripping on players you're planning on dumping. It will only hurt you when you try and move him. Twins policy should be to build him up. Compliment his clubhouse demeanor. Maximize his value at all costs. They invested 7 to 8 years on Slowey. Ripped him and dumped him for next to nothing.
The front office and Gardy need to be on the same page. The approach has come up several times in recent years. Slowey. Delmon Young. Brendan Harris.
Twins - If you've decided that a player needs to be moved, keep it to yourself and try and maximize his value. These quotes will help. Practice with me Gardy: "He's a good clubhouse guy." "He wants the ball." "He's a hard worker with plenty of effort - we just need to fine tune his role." "He's a gamer."