Plouffe Promoted

20 May

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REMINDER – The SethSpeaks.net Weekly Minnesota Twins Podcast will be at 9:00 on Sunday night. Guests are still a work in progress, but there will be a show with lots of Twins talk, minor league talk and much more.

Well, it was only about ten days too late, but Trevor Plouffe was finally promoted to the Twins following Thursday night’s Twins and Red Wings game. He had been held of out the Red Wings lineup on Thursday. Unfortunately, his promotion comes at the expense of Jeff Manship who was sent back to Rochester. From the Red Wings site:

The Minnesota Twins announced after tonight’s game that they will recall infielder Trevor Plouffe from Triple-A Rochester in time for Friday night’s game vs. the Milwaukee Brewers at Target Field. In 38 games with the Red Wings this season, Plouffe batted .303 (46-for-152) with 11 doubles, three triples, four home runs and 21 rbi. He was drafted by the Twins in the first round (20th overall) of the 2004 First-Year Player Draft. Plouffe’s first game action will be his Major League debut and he will wear uniform number 24. To make room for Plouffe on the 25-man roster, the Twins have optioned right-handed pitcher Jeff Manship to Triple-A Rochester…

I told Plouffe at Twins Fest that next year, I will pay for his autograph, and now, I will have to do just that. Trevor is a terrific guy with great charisma and he has put it all together this year. He will turn 24 years old in June. One of the Twins first-round picks in 2004, Plouffe has slowly worked his way up the Twins farm system. He was promoted to the Red Wings in the second half of 2008 and spent all of 2009 there as well. When the Twins signed JJ Hardy this offseason, Plouffe used it as motivation and is putting together a great year.

Following the 2009 season, Plouffe participated in the World Cup for Team USA. He was their shortstop and second hitter and a team leader. He helped the team, along with guys like Ike Davis, Justin Smoak and Terry Tiffee, win the gold medal.

So, although it is unfortunate that Jeff Manship is returning to Rochester (instead of say, Jose Mijares, or… maybe a DFA of Jesse Crain?), I am thrilled for Trevor Plouffe.

Here is a quick glance at what happened on Thursday night in the Twins minor league system:

SethSpeaks Thursday Minor League Hitter of the Day – Jason Repko – Rochester Red Wings

SethSpeaks Thursday Minor League Pitcher of the Day – BJ Hermsen – Beloit Snappers 

  • Be sure to check out Josh’s Thoughts for his Minor League News and Notes.
  • Speaking of Josh Johnson, he and I are heading to Beloit, Wisconsin, on Friday to watch the Snappers play Cedar Rapids on Friday and Saturday. We should see Edgar Ibarra and Michael Tonkin in the mound. Hopefully we will see Aaron Hicks and Angel Morales both games. I am not certain if I will be posting blog entries over the weekend, but I am sure that I will be tweeting away. Follow me at www.twitter.com/sethtweets.

Red Wings Report   

Thursday – Rochester 3, Syracuse 4 Tyler Robertson was promoted to Rochester, likely just for this one start in place of Manship. The young lefty did alright. In five innings, he gave up three runs on six hits. He walked two and struck out six. Tim Lahey came in and threw two shutout innings. Cole DeVries then gave up an unearned run on three hits in two innings. He struck out three. Jason Repko was most of the offense. He went 4-5 with his fourth homer and three RBI. Jacque Jones went 2-4. Matt Tolbert and Brock Peterson each had doubles.  

New Britain Notes

Thursday – New Britain 6, Portland 2Kyle Gibson appears to be fairly good at pitching. . I think that is fairly safe to say. On this night, the 2009 top pick gave up two runs on four hits in seven innings. He walked one and struck out six. He had 13 ground balls with two fly outs, continuing his ground ball inducing ways. Michael Allen reduced his AA ERA to just 1.23 with another scoreless inning. Loek Van Mil gave up two hits in a scoreless inning. Erik Lis went 3-5 with his first New Britain homer. Ben Revere went 2-3 with two walks. He stole his 12th and 13th bases. Rene Tosoni went 2-5 with his seventh double. Juan Portes went 2-5 with a triple.   

Miracle Matters

Thursday – Ft. Myers 5, Daytona 7 – Blake Martin made another start, and it didn’t go well. In 3.2 innings, he gave up seven runs on seven hits (two home runs). He walked two and struck out three. Tony Davis went 2.1 scoreless. Billy Bullock struck out two in his inning. Steve Blevins struck out three in two shutout innings. Estarlin de Los Santos went 3-5. Joe Benson went 2-5 with his first Miracle home run (6th of the year). Ramon Santana hit his eighth double and first triple. Chris Parmelee went 0-2, but he walked three times.

Snappers Snippets

Thursday – Beloit 3, Kane County 2 – The Snappers didn’t get much offense generated, but it was still enough for BJ Hermsen. The Twins young pitcher was tremendous in his second Midwest League start. In seven shutout innings, he gave up three hits and no walks. He struck out three for the Win. He is now 1-0 with a 0.75 ERA and 0.75 WHIP. Jhon Garcia gave up two runs (1 earned) in 1.1 innings, his first since joining the Snappers. Kane Holbrooks recorded his fifth save by getting the final two outs via strikeout. The Snappers managed just four hits. Angel Morales had a two run single. He also stole his 12th and 13th bases of the year.

If you have any thoughts, please feel free to comment here.

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23 Responses to “Plouffe Promoted”

  1. USAFChief May 21, 2010 at 5:07 am #

    The recall of Tolbert was really pointless, wasn’t it? Plouffe should’ve been playing SS here since Hardy went on the DL.

  2. TT May 21, 2010 at 8:40 am #

    Tolbert got four at bats and pinch ran once in a little over a week. He was there as a bench player. It would have been really pointless to have Plouffe sitting on the bench and Tolbert is actually a better pinch runner. So, no, Tolbert’s recall wasn’t pointless.

    It will be interesting to see how much Plouffe plays. Harris has really been struggling, so its possible they will play him every day. But that wasn’t going to happen a couple weeks ago.

  3. mini_tb May 21, 2010 at 8:57 am #

    I agree with TT. The only way you recall Plouffe should be as a starter. The Twins’ staff originally thought Hardy would be back quickly, so they figured they could let Harris cover for a week or so.

    Now that we know that isn’t the case with Hardy, it’s time for Plouffe to come up and get some starts (hopefully). If Plouffe is up just to sit on the bench and watch Punto and Harris struggle to maintain batting averages consistent with their respective weights, then, again, it’s confusing. Tolbert is perfectly capable of that.

    If Harris has been deemed a non-starter option for a month or so in Hardy’s place, then that 2 year contract is looking even more questionable now than it did initially.

  4. mike wants wins May 21, 2010 at 9:02 am #

    Or, instead of playing Harris, they could have played Plouffe (or Casilla). If you want a pinch runner, call up the CF from Rocester. If you want a middle infielder, call up Hughes (when healthy) or Plouffe. Tolbert shouldn’t be on the 40 man roster if you have Punto, Harris, and Casilla.

    And, the Twins have not really purged themselves of their old ways. This loyalty to Crain at the expense of several other options in AAA is bad. He’s just not able to get MLB hitters out right now. But, they (as do many teams) have this inability to cut the cord (even after more than a year of evidence). This is, of course, why you don’t pay your 5th or 6th best reliever more than the minimum dollar in the first place…..

    • mini_tb May 21, 2010 at 9:33 am #

      Hindsight always being 20/20 does make it easier to say that Plouffe should have been called up as soon as Hardy went down. When Hardy was originally going to be out just a week or less, it was defensible to go with Harris and Casilla so as not to start Plouffe’s service clock. Perhaps the reason they are going with Plouffe now is that Hardy will be out for an extended period of time???

      I don’t mean to beat the proverbial dead horse here, but there is no point in having Harris on this team making roughly $1M more than either Casilla or Tolbert just to keep the bench warm. Harris isn’t even a legitimate pinch runner or defensive replacement. And he’s under contract for next year, too.

    • gobbledy May 21, 2010 at 9:39 am #

      mike i saw your black hole at 3b comment yesterday on len3 blog. i do agree but after listening to dick, bert and roy last night spend half the game proclaiming punto as the best fielder ever you and i must be wrong. sounded like they were getting us ready for a contract ext. soon.
      harris has always been hot and cold, this year he was hot in spring training still started the season on the bench and has never found it this year. not sure what you do at this point some guys need to play everyday to produce and others can go in and out and do fine. seems to me nicky hits better when he doesn’t play every day and harris needs to play every day. right now neither is hitting which is a problem. the black hole at 2b last yr just moved is all.

  5. mike wants wins May 21, 2010 at 10:04 am #

    Note, I injured myself this week, and am in a generally crabby mood. I’m trying not to let it effect this post….but just a warning.

    Service time/scmervice time. We were told money doesn’t matter any more. Also, it isn’t hindsight when Seth and others said it before the call up. I do agree that having four utility infielders doesn’t make much sense.

    Why were they worried about losing Casilla, if he doesn’t play hardly at all when Hardy is hurt? If he’s not playing now, when would he?

    Can anyone explain the two year deal for Harris? Is there any justification for that at all? I didn’t get it then, I don’t get it now.

    Yes, ggg, the 2B black hole is now at 3B. Unfortunately, it looks like 2B and 3B could still be black holes next year. There is not a clear MLB player ready right now. Valencia is power free. Not sure who 2B might be, unless Hughes figures out how to field (unless they re-sign the current 2B). Revere should have been traded last offseason for a legit 2B or 3B prospect, imo.

    As for Punto’s defense, let’s do some simple math. The NUMBER 1 3B in all of baseball last year had a UZR of 17.1. That’s the best 3B in all of baseball….so, if Punto is the best, he can save 17 runs in a season compared to average. Let’s look at his hitting…..fangraphs has him mostly as a SS, but even compared to SS, he’s -11 in hitting. I suppose I should go to back to working, but does anyone think Punto only creates 17 less runs than an average 3B in a year? Or, more importantly if you are building a great team, what is the difference between Punto and the 3B on the great teams? That said, he has a positve WAR on Fangraphs….and has most every year he’s played. So, he’s not useless. The question is, if you want to be a great team, can you have a black hole (offensively) at 3B, SS (and some would say 1 of the corner OF spots)?

    I’m not even going to touch on the pitching….

    • gobbledy May 21, 2010 at 2:37 pm #

      “some would say corner outfield…..”, which one mike? at least so far this year delmon and cuddy are a wash with dy better in the field. we need both of them to step it up soon, imo.

  6. jimcrikket May 21, 2010 at 10:45 am #

    If you look at Casilla’s numbers against Harris’ (without even considering defense), there’s no question who the regular SS should have been with Hardy out, imo. You have to like Plouffe’s bat this year, but 8 errors? Not sure how those all came about, but if it is indicative of the kind of defense he plays, you really can’t possibly afford a DEFENSIVE ‘black hole’ at SS.

    Seth… when you get to Beloit, please pull Hermsen aside and tell him to back off a bit. Give up some runs or something. The Snappers come down to Cedar Rapids in mid June and again in early August and I don’t want him shooting up the organizational chain before we get to watch that Iowa boy pitch down here!

  7. writingfordigital May 21, 2010 at 11:39 am #

    If Plouffe had come up, we would not have been forced to watch Brendan Harris hit a buck 80 as a starter. Brendan would have stayed on the bench where he belongs.

  8. DH in Philly May 21, 2010 at 11:58 am #

    Who ever said money doesn’t matter anymore??? Someone may have extrapolated that from the fact that payroll went up, but I doubt anyone ever said it. Just because there is a new stadium doesn’t mean that the Twins should start making the foolish business decisions that the bloggers would make if they were in charge.

  9. mike wants wins May 21, 2010 at 12:00 pm #

    Gardenhire is the 2B for Rochester? Ugh. They need someone else there while Hughes is hurt. The poor pitchers. I thought Toby was going to be the emergency catcher only…..

  10. mike wants wins May 21, 2010 at 12:06 pm #

    DH, no reason to be insulting…you could just offer your opinion. As for money not mattering, the Twins have publicly stated that they will do what is right for the team, and not worry about service clocks. Now, I take that with a grain of salt, but they said it.

  11. TT May 21, 2010 at 1:20 pm #

    Service clock has nothing to do with it. Harris has struggled, but that was hardly expected. He is hitting 65 points lower than his career average so far.

    Casilla is a utility guy at this point. He plays good defense, can pinch run and he seems to be hitting a bit better. We can only hope that Casilla is finally finding his potential.

    But if you look at their histories, you would expect Harris to hit considerably better. Getting him in the lineup every day was the right call.

    My guess is that if they would have recalled Tolbert again if they were allowed to. It sounds like Hardy will be ready early next week.

  12. JA May 21, 2010 at 1:34 pm #

    Hi Seth,
    Jesse Crain is not pitching very well, anyone can see that. However, he has been a model player and teammate by all accounts and has represented Minnesota and the Twins very well throughout his time here. So the unfortunate thing is that injuries and time may have caught up to Jesse for us too see him deliver on all the promise. If he does move on soon, I wish him nothing but good fortune. So the unfortunate thing isn’t that Jeff Manship will spend some more time in AAA, it’s that Jesse isn’t at his best.

  13. mike wants wins May 21, 2010 at 2:11 pm #

    I guess that raises the question “why did they send tolbert down before taking Hardy off the DL?”. No matter what the decision about who should be up, that decision was a mistake, in that it handcuffed them. That decision seems odd.

    Yes, JA, it is always sad when a player becomes not as good as he was. Nice post.

    • gobbledy May 21, 2010 at 2:40 pm #

      mike i think they brought up manship because of the 2 real short starts at toronto and the bullpen getting used up going into the sux series. right or wrong when your starters have a series of short starts the dominos fall.

  14. mike wants wins May 21, 2010 at 4:24 pm #

    ggg, that makes sense. Don’t agree with the reasoning, but it makes sense. But, if you are going to send someone down, make it Crain….if you need a long reliever.

  15. USAFChief May 22, 2010 at 5:50 am #

    “It would have been really pointless to have Plouffe sitting on the bench”

    Which is why many of us have been asking why Plouffe wasn’t brought up to play SS, every day, when Hardy went on the DL. Nobody wants to watch Brendan Harris play short, and adding Matt Tolbert to a team with Punto, Harris, and Casilla adds absolutely NOTHING to the team. Nothing. They were, in effect, playing with a 24 man roster.

    Self inflicted pain, and the Twins do this to themselves often.

    They lost their SS. Playing a substandard option at SS for a few days while they waited for Hardy to get back was fine. Once the decision was made to DL him, the proper choice was to get an every day SS here.

    And that ain’t Matt Tolbert. I don’t care if Plouffe never got a hit, he can at least play a passable shortstop. And that ain’t Brendan Harris.

  16. TT May 22, 2010 at 12:54 pm #

    “Nobody wants to watch Brendan Harris play short,”

    That is obviously not true. Gardenhire obviously did.

    More to the point, taking Hardy’s injury as an opportunity to get Harris in lineup for a while makes perfect sense. He didn’t exactly make great use of the opportunity, but that doesn’t mean it wasn’t the right decision.

  17. USAFChief May 22, 2010 at 5:45 pm #

    “That is obviously not true. Gardenhire obviously did. ”

    Are you intentionally being obtuse? Gardy obviously DOESN’T want to watch Harris play SS, or he would currently be doing so.

    Instead, he’s watching Plouffe play SS.

    Tolbert was useless. He provided nothing the Twins didn’t already have. Plouffe is at least capable of playing SS every day.

  18. TT May 23, 2010 at 4:50 pm #

    “Gardy obviously DOESN’T want to watch Harris play SS, or he would currently be doing so.”

    And he obviously did want to watch Harris play SS, or Harris wouldn’t have played there. He had three other options, Tolbert, Punto and Casilla.

    “he would currently be doing so.”

    Harris didn’t exactly shine did he? So now, with Plouffe the only option available, they are letting the prospect play.

  19. USAFChief May 24, 2010 at 2:10 pm #

    “And he obviously did want to watch Harris play SS, or Harris wouldn’t have played there. He had three other options, Tolbert, Punto and Casilla. ”

    Harris played SS because he was deemed the better of he and Casilla, two poor choices to play SS every day.

    Punto plays third, so he wasn’t an option. Punto’s arm isn’t good enough to play SS anymore, anyway, except in an emergency. Tolbert isn’t really an option at short. Casilla could have played SS, I agree.

    But when given the option of playing Plouffe or Harris (or Casilla), he chose Plouffe. Case closed.

    It’s similar to Gardy being handcuffed with Butera. Gardy wanted Ramos on the team, front office said no. When given the option, he played Ramos.

    The original point remains: Tolbert added nothing, wasn’t used (except for 3 PAs that could have gone to one of the other futility infielders already here), and was shipped back to Rochester having contributed zero. Plouffe should’ve been playing SS every day.

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