Wednesday, December 2, 2009
Plenty of rumors to follow, but nothing to really report, so here are just a few notesÖ Please remember to stop by later to see our NFL ďExpertĒ Pick panelís Week 13 Picks.
∑ Yesterday afternoon, Kelly Thesier tweeted that Brian Buscher had signed a minor league contract with the Cleveland Indians. He was disappointing in 2009. However, he played so infrequently, that expecting much of anything would not be fair. I thought in 2008, he was solid. He doesnít take a ton of walks, but he does seem to take pitches and put together solid at bats. No matter how you look at it, to get a guy to contribute in three big league seasons in the minor league portion of the Rule 5 draft is incredible.
∑ Cleveland also signed Luis Rodriguez to a minor league deal. I was always a fan of Luis(!). As you can see, he is the one player in Twins history to get the one-name name recognition, including an exclamation point! Although he was never top 30 of 40 prospect, I liked that he was just solid throughout his minor league career. He always walked as often or more than he struck out. He hit doubles. He then spent 2005-2007 as a utility player with the Twins. Over that time, he hit a combined .243/.316/.323. He has been in San Diego the last two years, getting time as their starting shortstop a couple of times. In 2008, he hit a respectable .287/..326/.351. In 2009, however, he fell to .202/.319/.260. However, in those two years with the Padres, he walked 50 times while striking out just 36 times. He isnít a terrific athlete for an infielder, and he isnít quick. On defense, his range was well below average. But Iím not going to apologize for being a fan of Luis(!).
∑ The Twins made the decision late Tuesday night to offer arbitration to Carl Pavano, a move that was the easy and right choice. The Twins will want a veteran starter in 2010. Pavano is that. The Twins have some wiggle room in spending. So, if Pavano decides to accept arbitration, the two sides will submit their numbers and determine how much he will be paid in 2010. I canít imagine he would get the rumored $10 million, but I think $7-8 million would make sense. Although Iím not a huge fan of bringing back Pavano, the one year deal means that it wonít hurt the Twins over the long haul. If he declines arbitration and signs elsewhere, the Twins will get a valuable supplemental first round draft pick
∑ As I mentioned yesterday, there seems to be quite a bit of confusion on Danny Valencia and Winter ball. Valencia is going to Puerto Rico, but he will be playing for Mayaguez, not Ponce. Also, he will be heading down there on December 10th.
∑ When I mentioned the other day that Joe Mauerís decision to sign with IMG for off-field representation, I said it was a non-story. But Marty Andrade told me I was wrong saying ďit means his autograph is about to get really scarce and probably increase in value 50% over the next few years.Ē†
∑ Twins Target posted his #9 Twins Prospect.